Some might think it an odd distinction, but give or take his Boston homeboy Steven Tyler of Aerosmith, no rock star in the '70s anticipated rap music as thoroughly as Peter Wolf of the J. Geils Band. Like Tyler, his verbose tongue-twisting was clearly schooled in the funk and blues that formed the foundation of Geils' boogie rock. But Wolf's style was equally indebted to the jive-talking disc jockeys who dominated much of rock 'n' roll radio in the '50s and '60s. Born in 1946 in the Bronx, he was just the right age for them. So it's no surprise that his own entry in the music world was as a DJ, for Boston's underground FM rock station WBCN. Before long he took his microphone skills to the stage, first in a local band called the Hallucinations and then in the Geils Band, whose initial regional popularity expanded through the '70s, eventually climaxing with 1981's chart-topping Freeze-Frame before they imploded. Three years later, on his first solo album, Wolf made his hip-hop connection explicit by teaming up with electro-funk producer Michael Jonzun of the Jonzun Crew. He has released several more solo albums since, increasingly adopting a more adult alternative aesthetic.
Peter Wolf Concert Films
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 53 minThis episode features the eclectic, dynamic and wonderful Peter Wolf who is best known for his years fronting the J. Geils Band. Wolf's delivery is high velocity all the way with songs including: "Growin' Pain," "Long Way Back Again," "Nothing But The Wheel," "Long Line," "Homework," "Believe in Me," "Sleepless," "Cry One More Time," "All Torn Up" and "Waiting on The Moon." Wolf recently scored a record within Rolling Stone's list of the "500 Greatest Albums of All Time" with his solo release, "Sleepless." Throughout the evening, his soundscape washes through the audience and locks them into a syncopated, pulsating rhythm. His effervescent energy parallels performers half his age. His soulful vocals and rollicking persona culminate in a performance not to be missed.
Peter Wolf Top Tracks
Classic Albums: Damn The Torpedoes
Runtime: 56 minThis film tells the story behind the creation of this great rock 'n' roll album and the dramatic transformation in the band's career that took place following its release. Through interviews, new and archive performances and analysis we discover how Tom Petty, Mike Campbell, Benmont Tench, Ron Blair and Stan Lynch created their songs and sounds with the help of Co-Producer Jimmy Iovine and Engineer Shelly Yakus.
The Story of Rod Stewart
Runtime: 54 minRod Stewart's incredible career spans 5 decades and encompasses a string of number one albums and hit singles. With over 100 million records sold worldwide, Stewart ranks among the best selling artists of all time and with good reason. From rock to pop and heartfelt soul, Stewart is a rare genre-spanning artist, appealing to a massive global audience, with more fans today than ever before. His trademark gravely voice, instantly recognizable the world over has helped define and propel him from truly humble beginnings to worldwide superstardom. From his early days with the band Faces to the launch of his solo career and beyond Rod Stewart has worked with some of the biggest names in the industry and has become a pop legend in his own right. This is his remarkable story. Featuring music performance (both live and from pop video footage) from some of his best known songs, this inspiring tale is a must have for any Rod Stewart fan.
Classic Albums: The Band
Runtime: 59 minComprised of Rick Danko, Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, Richard Manuel and Robbie Robertson, The Band's self-titled sophomore effort spent 24 weeks in the Billboard Top 40. The album was released at a time when the US album charts were taken over by the psychedelic rock movement, and despite this, the album had the aforementioned chart success and would go on to sell over one million copies. This edition of the "Classic Albums" series focuses on The Band's follow-up to "MUSIC FROM BIG PINK". Featuring classics such as "Up On Cripple Creek", "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down", and "Rag Mama Rag", the story of the album is told through interviews with surviving members of The Band, fellow musicians Eric Clapton, Don Was, and George Harrison, and vintage footage. The Band is a classic album!
Hammersmith Odeon London '75
Runtime: 2 hr 10 minThis is the stuff of legend. Born to Run had been released to unanimous acclaim. Bruce and band went to the U.K., where they were hyped as the band to see-and with the stakes so high, they didn’t back down. These are definitive performances. “Thunder Road” has never sounded more naked and vulnerable. “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out” is clutch, a tight, affirmative performance that swings and punches with authority. “Spirit in the Night” slinks and unfolds like the New Jersey shoreline. The mix from Bob Clearmountain points up the band's incomparable chemistry, unlocking the magic and spotlighting the instruments while never sacrificing the wall of sound. By 1975, Springsteen had a complex web of songs with the most inventive structures imaginable. From the ethereal organ haunting the ghosts of “Lost in the Flood” or the simple piano accompaniment driving “For You” to the wistful memories of “Backstreets” and the urban sprawl of “Jungleland,” Bruce and The E Street Band were never more operatic or intense.
Live At Montreux 2005
Runtime: 1 hr 6 minSteve Earle’s solo performance at the 2005 Montreux Festival is a charismatic triumph. Armed with just an acoustic guitar and a harmonica he performs tracks from across his career, with an emphasis on his later output but also going right back to songs from his breakthrough album “Copperhead Road” from 1988. The songs are performed with his characteristic combination of honesty, outspoken views and self-deprecating humour.
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 1 hr 33 minREO SPEEDWAGON LIVE IN THE HEARTLAND presents Kevin Cronin (lead vocals, guitar), Bruce Hall (bass), Neal Doughty (keyboards), Dave Amato (lead guitar) and Bryan Hitt (drums) performing a full-throttle, 16-song set that spans the band's celebrated 35-year career from the Number 1 charting "Keep On Loving You" and "Can't Fight This Feeling" to hits from their most recent album release Find Your Own Way Home.
Live in Chicago
Runtime: 1 hr 54 minSoundstage captures a radiant Stevie Nicks in her first filmed solo performance since 1987. "Live In Chicago" includes all the timeless Nicks songs from her solo projects as well as songs written as a member of the legendary rockers Fleetwood Mac. Along with Stevie classics such as "Stand Back," "Rhiannon," "Dreams," "Gold Dust Woman," "Landslide" and "Edge Of Seventeen," the video also features stunning cover songs, including Dave Matthews' "Crash Into Me" and a tear-down-the-house finale of Led Zeppelin's "Rock And Roll."
Live at Soundstage - Part One
Runtime: 49 minWith her passionate voice and hearty riffs, this music teacher turned rock icon reminds the rest of us to look inside and lighten up with hits including "Soak Up The Sun," "Everyday is a Winding Road" and an exuberant cover of "Peace, Love and Understanding." Crow's two part Soundstage performance is also a look back at the classics that catapulted her career from the snappy "All I Wanna Do," to the whispery swan song "Strong Enough," to one of her earliest releases "Leaving Las Vegas."
All three hits helped comprose her debut Tuesday Night Music Club, which garnered Grammy honors for Best New Artist, Best Female Rock Vocal, and Record of the year in 1994. Later favorites featured in the set include "Safe and Sound," from the White Oleander soundtrack, "You're an Original" and "Members Only" off the Globe Sessions.
In Concert: Live at the BBC Radio Theatre
Runtime: 1 hr 16 minSir Van Morrison takes to the stage at The BBC Radio Theatre for an intimate In Concert performance. Belfast born ‘Van the man’ is among popular music's true innovators and arguably one of the most influential vocalists in the history of rock and roll. The Grammy winning Celtic soul troubadour has been fusing R&B, jazz, blues, and Celtic folk throughout his musical career and in this special, he performs a selection of tracks, old and new from his revered back catalogue of work to his new album ‘Keep Me Singing’.
Skin it Back
Runtime: 1 hr 12 minFilmed at the Grugahalle in Essen in 1977, just a few days before the recording of their legendary live album "Waiting For Columbus", this concert captures the classic seventies Little Feat line-up led by the late Lowell George at the very peak of their powers.
Live at Shea Stadium
Runtime: 2 hr 21 minWith Beatlemania at its height in 1965, Shea Stadium in Queens, New York, was the site of the first stadium show ever by The Beatles, or any rock & roll band for that matter. The Beatles' Shea performances made an impression on a young working-class musician from Long Island named Billy Joel. When the Mets built a new stadium and said goodbye to Shea in 2008, the local native turned superstar was the logical choice to give it a proper sendoff.
The companion to the acclaimed documentary The Last Play At Shea, the premiere release of Billy Joel Live At Shea Stadium features a full concert-length program: more than two hours of hits, history, memories and guest stars including Paul McCartney, all in riveting performances worthy of the historic building where it all went down.
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 55 minSmooth delivery, high-spirited melodies, that velvet voice and a soul-stirring rhythmic foundation. All are the elements that Steve Winwood brings to Soundstage featuring his recent work from the album About Time along with his classic hits including "Why Can't We Live Together" and "Back in the High Life." Winwood also performs "Dear Mr. Fantasy" and "The Low Spark of High-Heeled Boys" - hits from his days with Traffic (recently inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame).
Live in Budokan
Runtime: 1 hr 26 minStudio releases never fully conveyed Cheap Trick’s muscle, but the band harnessed the raw energy of their live show with 1978’s At Budokan (Live). Recorded in Tokyo before 12,000 feverish fans, “Hello There” and “Lookout” are the dictionary definition of how live rock ’n’ roll should sound. A cover of “Ain’t That a Shame” highlights the band’s connection to a timeless tradition of teen-rock abandon, but “Surrender” and “I Want You to Want Me” are the gold coins that secured them their own space in the rock canon.
Runtime: 1 hr 32 minFor more than two decades, Jackson Browne has been one of the most compelling artists in popular music. In August of 1994, The Disney Channel presented "Jackson Browne: Going Home," a chronicle of Jackson’s remarkable career. Jackson Browne: Going Home contains interviews, performances and rare footage spanning twenty-five years featuring Don Henley, Bonnie Raitt, David Crosby, Graham Nash, The Eagles, David Lindley, Jennifer Warnes and many more.
Live in London
Runtime: 1 hr"Live In London" is a live performance masterpiece that captures The Pretenders at the top of their game. If you saw them live on their 2009 tour, you'll know what I'm talking about. You owe it to yourself to get this program as a reminder of just how amazing this band is on the road.
"Live In London" succeeds where The Pretenders' studio albums fail. They are one of those rare bands that truly does sound better when they're playing in front of an audience -- an intimate small theater crowd here.
With all due respect to original guitarist James Honeyman Scott and bassist Pete Farndon, The Pretenders latest lineup is the best Chrissie Hynde has ever staged. With the steady pounding of original drummer Martin Chambers, newcomers James Walbourne on guitar, Nick Wilkinson on bass and Eric Heywood on pedal steel rock from start to finish, revitalizing Pretenders' classics like "Message of Love" and "Kid," while adding new ones like "Boots of Chinese Plastic" to the playlist.
You'll be blown away by Walbourne's electrifying guitar work. It starts with the first licks of the opener "Chinese Plastic," scorches through "Rosalee," and climaxes with the show-stopper "Precious." Walbourne delivers pure, unadulterated, raw, rip-snorting rock 'n' roll. His on-stage chemistry with Hynde is self-evident.
As per usual, Hynde's vocals are impeccable, showing great range, dynamics and emotion, equally adept at punk rockers like "The Wait" and ballads like "I'll Stand By You." This woman has earned the right to work the stage with the swagger of a rock star. She is it.
The direction and camera work throughout "Live In London" give the viewer the perspective of being on stage with The Pretenders. Tight crops interspersed with effective wide angles make one feel like he can count the streaks of mascara multiplying on Hynde's face and see the beads of sweat building on Chambers' brow as the night rocks on.
Beneath this Gruff Exterior
Runtime: 54 minInventive performer and poignant songwriter John Hiatt captures the attention of fans and critics alike. In this Soundstage performance, which features Dar Williams and Robinella and the CCstringband, Hiatt performs "My Baby Blue" from his most recent album Beneath This Gruff Exterior. He also showcases timeless pieces like "The Thing Called Love" and "Memphis in the Meantime." Folk-rocker Dar Williams takes the stage to perform "I Saw a Bird Fly Away," a piece which encapsulates Williams' ability to combine sensitivity with not only pathos, but also a sharp wit. East Tennessee natives Robinella and the CCstringband close out the show with new songs including "Honey Honey Bee" and "Man Over." Both songs are a testament to the acclaim that this jazz-bluegrass-swing band has earned from not just critics, but fans and peers alike.
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 54 minOne of the most loved bands in rock history, as well as one of the most commercially successful-with 50 hit songs in the U.S. alone, 18 gold records, a Grammy, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame Chicago have maintained the unflagging devotion of millions of devoted fans throughout their 37-year career. It began with the goal of incorporating the diverse musical range of their hometown Chicago, and incorporating the big-band aesthetic that included horns which had been virtually left behind in the world of rock and roll, Chicago went on to create a sound that remains unparalleled in rock music. Incorporating rock as only one genre among the many that they drew from, the band courageously rejected the trappings of celebrity in order for the music to stand on its own. This program documents a live show that was broadcast on PBS in June of 2003 where they play many of their hits from throughout their long career, including "25 or Six to Four," "You're the Inspiration," "Saturday in the Park," and "Beginnings," among many others.
The Deep End: Face the Face
Runtime: 1 hr 27 minThis show was filmed for the famous German TV series Rockpalast at MIDEM in Cannes on 29th January 1986. Pete Townshend’s Deep End were touring in support of Townshend’s solo concept album “White City: A Novel”. Several of the musicians that appeared on the album were featured in the line-up of the Deep End including Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour on lead guitar. The set list has tracks from the “White City” album, other Pete Townshend solo tracks, Who classics, David Gilmour’s song “Blue Light” and a couple of surprises. Pete Townshend and the band deliver an outstanding performance that showcases him as a solo artist as distinct from his work with The Who.