Donnerstag, 4. Februar 2016

The Kingston Trio - ...From The Hungry I (1959)

The Kingston Trio's self-titled debut album, recorded in early 1958, had been successful in capturing their range, but not the excitement or the good humor that the group generated on-stage. Their second LP, recorded live at the "Hungry I" in San Francisco on August 15 and 16, 1958, just a few days after the debut LP's release, captured a better picture of their total act, distilling down a major chunk of their live act to vinyl.

Dave Guard, Nick Reynolds, and Bob Shane obviously are all having a great time, and they're in top form musically, which brings the crowd (and the rest of us) along. Among the established parts of their current and future recorded repertoire represented here are "Zombie Jamboree" (identified as "the song that killed calypso") and "The Merry Minuet," interspersed with suitable live material, including "They Call the Wind Maria," featuring Shane in a breathtakingly beautiful take on the song from Paint Your Wagon.

The recording was about as fine as any live music document of this period - the microphone placement seems almost miraculous in terms of capturing the voices, guitars, banjo, bass, and bongos, plus the crowd reactions, and the only flaw (not perceived as such at the time) was that the show was recorded only in mono, which would eventually doom the album to deletion after more than a decade.

There have since been other live recordings by the group unearthed from this period, and within a year they would record a concert in stereo, but "...From the "Hungry I" is still the album by which most original fans first came to take in their sound, especially as its release coincided with the rise to the top of the charts of the single "Tom Dooley." 

The Kingsto Trio - ...From The Hungry I (1959)
(256 kbps, cover art included         

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