A legendary event in the incredible 60-year history of the Rolling Stones is released in full for the first time.
El Mocambo 1977 marks the first official appearance of the group's two famous secret concerts at the 300-capacity Toronto club in March 1977.
It features the Stones' full set from the March 5 show, plus three bonus tracks from the March 4 gig, newly mixed by Bob Clearmountain.
Only four of the performances found their way onto the Love You Live album that followed in September 1977, which was dominated by tracks captured on the band's 1975 and '76 tours, with the full set having never been heard before.
As the Stones took to the stage of the "El Mo," a fixture of the Toronto music scene since the 1940s, punk and disco were both rearing into full view, supposedly ready to see off a band who had already been at the top of their game for 15 years. Over two nights, in an intimate space in one of their favorite cities, they were about to make that prognosis look foolish indeed.
The gigs became reality after the El Mocambo was identified as the potential home for a secret booking.
A radio contest was organized in which the prize was tickets to see Canadian rock heroes April Wine, supported by an unknown band called the Cockroaches.
Guess who they turned out to be...
On the nights, naturally, April Wine were themselves the opening act, and so it was that the Stones rolled back the years to the exhilarating club incarnation of their early years.
Against all the odds, the band produced two nights of exhilarating music that they still talk about in Toronto, and in Rolling Stones legend, to this day.
It was a setlist for all seasons, from Muddy Waters' "Mannish Boy" and Bo Diddley's "Crackin' Up" to staples such as "Let's Spend The Night Together" and "Tumbling Dice," and back to the blues with Big Maceo's "Worried Life Blues" and Willie Dixon's "Little Red Rooster."
There was the live debut of "Worried About You," not heard in studio form until 1981's Tattoo You, and more highlights from "Honky Tonk Women" to "Hot Stuff."
Forty-five years on, this is a trip back to the intensity of the Crawdaddy Club in the Stones' earliest days, as revisited by the greatest rock 'n' roll band in the world.
Live at the El Mocambo presents the Stones as something between a hard-working club band and conquering heroes hawking their latest ware...The Stones often sound as if they're enjoying hunkering down on a smaller stage, giving enthusiastic performances that avoid sloppiness. It adds up to a gas, a record that belongs alongside Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out! and Brussels Affair as among the best official live Stones albums.
The continued dredging of the Rolling Stones archives has once again uncovered a fascinating artifact. Following the release of Black & Blue, Mick, Keef and the boys decided to dip their toes into a North American tour by playing two somewhat secret shows at Toronto's El Mocambo, a club that held an estimated 650 people. As always, scandal followed them as Richards was dealing with a drug bust and Mick showed up at the gigs with the estranged wife of Canada's prime minister. As for the gigs, by all accounts, the first one was awful. But on the next night, the gears locked into place and the Stones ripped that joint apart. This 4 LP set is comprised mostly of recordings from that second gig, and it positively smokes. Loosened up by low stakes, the band dips into their bag of old blues and R&B covers ('Route 66,' 'Little Red Rooster'), and lays waste to originals from throughout their already stuffed catalog.
- Limited Edition
- 4LP Box Set
- Never-Before-Heard Full Set from the March 5, 1977 Show
- Recorded Professionally by the Band in Front of Just 300 People
- First Ever Release of the Full Set
- 3 Bonus Tracks from the March 4, 1977 Gig
- Newly Mixed by Bob Clearmountain
- Live Debut of "Worried about You"
- 2 Gatefold Jackets
- Die-Cut Slipcase
- Special Etching
- Made in France
- Honky Tonk Women
- All Down the Line
- Hand of Fate
- Route 66
- Fool to Cry
- Crazy Mama
- Mannish Boy
- Crackin' Up
- Dance Little Sister
- Around & Around
- Tumbling Dice
- Hot Stuff
- Star Star
- Let's Spend the Night Together
- Worried Life Blues
- Little Red Rooster
- It's Only Rock 'N' Roll (But I Like It)
- Rip This Joint
- Brown Sugar
- Jumpin' Jack Flash
- Worried about You