Saturday, October 06, 2012

Saturday Night Live Music: "Steamroller" and Much More

I'd never consciously listened to a James Taylor song before the two years I spent in South Korea on a proselytizing mission for the Mormon church from 1988-1990. I'm sure I'd heard his music before, but I hadn't paid any attention to it. But while a missionary in Korea--alternately confused, excited, frightened, and bored--the songs of JT, which I picked up from contraband music tapes and from a fellow missionary who had broken the rules and brought his guitar with him to Korea, absolutely went to my heart. After I came home to U.S., I bought his albums, and then, while an undergraduate at BYU, would drive up into the mountains, and just listen to them while staring at the stars. Kind of pathetic/romantic, I know, but true all the same. JT is the only major musical performer that I've ever paid serious money to see live in concert twice--and of those concerts, the best one was during his tour for New Moon Shine, which is exactly the tour which the following bootleg recording of JT and his band's dress rehearsal captures. I remember so much from that evening in the spring of 1992, which you hear here--"Down in the Hole," "Shed a Little Light," and most of all, an awesome version of "Steamroller," with Don Grolick at the piano and Jimmy Johnson on bass. It begins around 7:40, but seriously: listen to the whole thing.

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