My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Note: The Rdio imbeded linking doesn’t seem to be working right as of 3/21/2014. Here is a direct link to the album page on Rdio: http://rd.io/x/QVpb1yJcp30/
Background: Live at the Apollo was recorded in October of 1962 and released in May of 1963. The album was paid for at the expense of Brown and he also had to lobby King records to even put it out. Slowly sales of the album began to build based off of word of mouth and it ended up being huge (especially in S.E. U.S.) and spent 66 weeks on the Billboard Pop Albums Chart.
What I Liked:
This album may be the best thing I have EVER heard! Not just the best live album, but best recording. Do yourself a favor and quit reading here and go listen, there is no way I can do this album justice. I’ll start with a cliche though…. Brown is like a preacher speaking to a rapt congregation. They hang on his every word (and you can tell without even seeing, his every movement). They listen intently trying to take in what they can, but when he screams, their screams come out as well. On top of that, the band may have even a better performance than Brown. The sounds and changes they produce are stunning. There is a breakdown part in the middle of “Lost Someone” where Brown is almost whispering and the band is playing soft. All of the sudden the drummer hits a cymbal and the crowd screams, later he does it again and they scream again. It’s absolutely amazing!I’ve never been a big Brown fan (I’ve always heard his later sixties stuff, which moves too much towards funk for me), but this album has changed that. I’ll even listen to those songs I know with new ears again.
Now please go listen….. and turn it up really loud!
Rating (Out of 5): 5
Amazon Review (Out of 5):4.5
Is this my first time hearing this album? Yes (34/43)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 79%