Tim Buckley – Live At The Folklore Center, NYC: March 6, 1967 (Tompkins Square Records)

There’s no shortage of Tim Buckley live albums; so what makes this one so special? First, this is the earliest concert of Buckley’s career to see release, taking place between his first and second album, so you get an almost completely different set-list. Second, this is the most naked and intimate Buckley performance ever to be released, consisting of just his voice and acoustic guitar, recorded with a single microphone in front of an audience of about thirty-five people (check the cover photo for proof). The unadorned performance adds a rawness to the songs from his first two albums, stripping away the typical mid-’60s West Coast session-man instrumentation from the familiar studio versions. Last, six songs on the Folklore Center set-list never appeared on another Buckley album, studio or live. Rather surprising that he never revisited any of these songs later on, given the strength of the material – especially “Just Please Leave Me” and a mournful “Cripples Cry” – which is as good as anything else in his discography. It’s hard to believe this album, with its intense performance, exciting set-list and good sound quality (a shock given the 40+ year vintage – although you do hear an audience member have a coughing fit at one point) sat on the shelves for so long. An essential addition to the Tim Buckley discography.

Tracklisting :

  1. Song For Jainie
  2. I Never Asked To Be Your Mountain
  3. Wings
  4. Phantasmagoria In Two
  5. Just Please Leave Me *
  6. Dolphins
  7. I Can’t See You
  8. Troubadour
  9. Aren’t You The Girl
  10. What Do You Do (He Never Saw You) *
  11. No Man Can Find The War
  12. Carnival Song
  13. Cripples Cry *
  14. If The Rain Comes *
  15. Country Boy *
  16. I Can’t Leave You Loving Me *

*previously unreleaed