The Offender Meets the Pretender is a widely-bootlegged Dutch radio program featuring songs by, and interviews with, Warren Zevon alongside his friend and colleague Jackson Browne. The recordings are from Zevon’s first tour in 1976/77, shortly after the release of his self-titled second album, which included guest appearances in the middle of Jackson Browne’s concerts.
–Warren Zevon Wiki
Live at the VPRO Studios, Hilversum, the Netherlands; December 8, 1976
Live at RAI Congrescentrum, Amsterdam, the Netherlands; December 9, 1976
On May 14, 2000 …Zevon appeared as a musical guest on the long-running BBC TV music variety series Later . . . with Jools Holland, where he performed a deep track from the new album—the frank, foreboding, and funny “My Shit’s Fucked Up.”
Shadowy and sparse musically and visually, the lurking live rendition of “My Shit’s Fucked Up” is unequivocally one of Zevon’s most captivating solo performances, electric or acoustic; one that would ironically accumulate significant emotional consequence. The song, the album, and Zevon’s peripheral performance became prophetic, unknowingly setting a haunting tone for his next three years and records.
-George Plasketes (Warren Zevon: Desperado of Los Angeles)
…. this performance captures a classic Warren Zevon show, when many believe he was at the height of his creative prowess. Near the start of the show, Zevon steps up to the microphone and exclaims: “It’s great to be back in Philadelphia… And it’s great to be in a rock and roll band!” Then, he launches into a blistering version of his hit, “Excitable Boy,” with all the bravado of a pool hall punk. A song about a high school age sociopath’s murderous prom night, this is a prime example of Zevon’s extremely macabre outlook. Later in the show, he reminds the audience: “This is one of the best audiences I have ever seen; I may go berserk!”
This performance, recorded in 1978 after the release of Excitable Boy, captures that pivotal moment in time, just as Zevon was riding up the hit single charts with “Werewolves of London.” His band is a bit ragged and Zevon’s vocals are certainly an acquired taste, but his spirit and performance more than makes up for any weaknesses. Fans of that breakthrough album will be delighted here, as that material weighs heavy in this performance.
Auditorium le Plateau
July 30, 1978