December 31: The Band played at Civic Auditorium SF in 1983

the band rick danko 1983

One of the most anticipated gigs of 1983 came at the very end of the year, when the Band returned to the city of The Last Waltz when invited to open for the Grateful Dead at their annual New Year’s Eve extravaganza. Before a sold-out crowd at San Francisco’s Civic Auditorium, the Band proved they were still one of the best sounding groups on the planet, delivering a performance that not only delighted the San Francisco audience, but the Band members themselves. Performing classic original material as well as a smattering of choice covers, this performance was captured by the Bill Graham Presents crew and is presented here in its entirety.
~concertvault.com

Richard Manual 1983

  • Rick Danko – bass, acoustic guitar, vocals
  • Levon Helm – drums, mandolin, harmonica, vocals
  • Richard Manuel – piano, drums, vocals
  • Garth Hudson – organ, piano, synthesizer, accordion, saxophones
  • Earl Cate – electric guitar, background vocals
  • Ernie Cate – keyboards
  • Ron Eoff – bass, background vocals
  • Terry Cagle – drums

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December 30: The fantastic Patti Smith was born in 1946

To be an artist — actually, to be a human being in these times — it’s all difficult. … What matters is to know what you want and pursue it. … [Life] is like a roller coaster. It’s never going to be perfect — it is going to have perfect moments, and then rough spots, but it’s all worth it.
~Patti Smith

“I don’t fuck much with the past but I fuck plenty with the future.”
~Patti Smith

“A writer, or any artist, can’t expect to be embraced by the people [but] you just keep doing your work — because you have to, because it’s your calling.”
~Patti Smith

Punk rock’s poet laureate Patti Smith ranks among the most influential female rock & rollers of all time. Ambitious, unconventional, and challenging, Smith’s music was hailed as the most exciting fusion of rock and poetry since Bob Dylan’s heyday.
~Steve Huey (allmusic.com)

For other Patti Smith quotes check out: Patti Smith Quotes @ 1oohabits.com

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December 29: The late great Rick Danko was born in 1942

I saw Ronnie Hawkins play near my hometown, Port Dover, Ontario, and I saw him play there on New Year’s Eve and the following spring I booked myself to be his opening act on maybe five shows, and he hired me after the first night.
-RickDanko

You put a song on the record or on tape and you stop singing it. You just don’t sit around and sing it anymore unless you’re performing. That’s kind of sad.
-Rick Danko

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December 29: Bruce Springsteen played Nassau Coliseum in 1980

BS - Coliseum 29 1980

Bruce played 3 concerts @ Nassau Coliseum at the end of 1980, and the New-year eve concert is the most famous. The concert bootleg “Nassau Night” (Crystal Cat) from the 12-31-1980 concert is one of the most famous (& best) Springsteen boots. BUT the concert he played on the 29th is also fantastic… and he played a heavenly version of “Incident on 57th Street” (only River Tour version – and next live version didn’t come until September 25th 1999 in Philadelphia, PA)

Incident on 57th Street – 1980-12-29:

“This is, uh…this is a song we haven’t done in a real long time…(?) …this is, uh, I hope I remember all the words, alright, I might not, I just learned them (?)…”
~Bruce intro for “Incident..”

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December 28: The late great Pops Staples was born in 1914

pops staples

The late great Pops Staples was born in 1914

Roebuck “Pops” Staples (December 28, 1914 – December 19, 2000) was an American gospel and R&B musician.

A pivotal figure in gospel in the 1960s and 70s, he was a tremendous songwriter, guitarist and singer. He was the patriarch and member of singing group The Staple Singers, which included his son Pervis and daughters Mavis, Yvonne, and Cleotha, later just Pops and his daughters.

Pops Staples – Gotta serve somebody (Jools Holland, 1994(?)):

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December 27: Bob Dylan released John Wesley Harding in 1967

Check out this post @ alldylan.com -> Dec 27: Bob Dylan released John Wesley Harding in 1967

Other December 27:

  • Bob Dylan recorded master versions of “Idiot Wind” & “You’re A Big Girl Now” in 1974 @ Sound 80 Studio, Minneapolis, Minnesota.
    BobDylan blood on the tracks
  • Songs of Leonard Cohen is the 1967 debut album of Canadian musician Leonard Cohen. It foreshadowed the future path of his career, with less success in the United States and far better in Europe, reaching #83 on the Billboard chart but achieving gold status only in 1989, while it reached #13 in UK and spent nearly a year and a half in the UK album charts.
    SongsOfLeonardCohen

    Released December 27, 1967
    (limited release);
    February 1968
    Recorded August 1967
    Columbia Studio E, New York
    Genre Folk
    Length 41:09
    Label Columbia
    Producer John Simon
  • Pretenders is the debut studio album by the British New Wave band The Pretenders, released on December 27, 1979 under Real Records (Sire Records in the United States). A combination of rock, punk, and pop music, this album made the band famous. The album features the singles “Stop Your Sobbing” “Kid” and “Brass in Pocket”.
    Pretenders_album

    Released December 27, 1979
    Recorded 1979 at Wessex Studios and Air Studios
    Genre New wave, punk rock
    Length 47:04
    Label Real (UK), Sire (US)
    Producer Chris Thomas, except “Stop Your Sobbing” produced by Nick Lowe

December 27 – Spotify playlist:

-Egil