of the Week [Recordings
of Indeterminate Origin]
It was fusion that killed the power trio. Jeff Beck formed Beck, Bogert & Appice in 1972 hoping to attain the same level of adulation and rewards that he thought he had missed out to Cream and Led Zeppelin. But on the night of Jan 26, 1974, at the Rainbow Theatre in London, he finally realized as BBA stretched out on what has been titled Rainbow Boogie, how unsatisfying it had all become.
Bassist and singer Tim Bogert, or was it drummer Carmine Appice?, was encouraging the audience to spell b-o-o-g-i-e and in similar Country Joe manner asking them "what's that spell" as Beck tugged and pulled, hummed and riffed a repeated guitar motif. It proved too much for the mercurial Englishman, known for his temper, and when the show was over, the band left separately, never to complete their second album.
The show was recorded and briefly considered for release by the record company. It was played on FM radio in the US and gave BBA's album sales a lift. Unfortunately, with the band no longer functioning, there was little point in releasing a live document. Only the Japanese subsidiary went ahead with a Beck, Bogart & Appice Live in Japan double LP, recorded over two nights at the Koseinin Hall in Osaka in 1973.
This Rainbow show is unique not only as the last recorded moment of the band but for previewing songs that were meant for BBA II. Tracks like Songs For Lovely Ladies [mistitled on this CD as Laughing Lady], the instrumental Jizz Whizz and Solid Lifter. Also included are tracks from the first BBA album - Superstition, Lady and Livin' Alone.
It also captured the two sides of BBA's split personality. The opening half of the show is incendiary with Beck riffing through Satisfied, Livin' Alone and a mighty 12-min guitar and drum effort on Morning Dew, while previewing his taste for fusion with the guitar front and centre on Solid Lifter and Jizz Whizz.
But as the show progressed, ennui sets in. The Stevie Wonder song, Superstition comes across with no enthusiasm and the final three songs are long and boring jams finally arriving at the end with an 11-min jam called Rainbow Boogie. The band was bankrupt of ideas.
There's a footnote to this story. Two sets were played that night. The first was recorded for possible release. Before the second set began, Tim Bogert got into a fight with Jeff Beck and according to Carmine Appice, you can hear the anger when Beck played the second set. Appice also got the stage engineer to record the first four songs from the second show and he claims Beck played even better. Tim Bogert left London the next day and headed back to America.
All of the first show has been captured in excellent stereo quality, although the vocals are badly miked. Beck would go on to record the wordless classic, Blow By Blow, and maintain his reputation as a guitarists' guitarist. But the format of the power trio probably died on this night. - Michael Cheah
Here are the tracks on Goodbye Lady. You can compare the setlist to the debut album and the official Live In Japan album.
1 Satisfied 4.55
On the Jeff Beck boxset, Beckology, this BBA song was listed "Blues Deluxe/BBA Boogie (live) - previously unreleased". This song was taken from the first show at the Rainbow Theatre.
& Appice 1973 debut album
BBA Live in Japan 1974
1. Superstition performed by Jeff Beck / Tim Bogert / Carmine Appice
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