Over the years, there have been some great live performances by Prince captured on tape and video. Over the years, the mighty purple one’s lawyers have dutifully gone about their business removing things from the internet, keeping them from fans’ eyes and ears.
There have been some great shows issued officially, of course. The VHS of the near three hour show from the ‘Purple Rain’ tour is legendary (and overdue a DVD reissue) and – even with overdubs – the ‘Sign ‘O’ The Times’ concert movie is beloved by fans.
For the past week, Real Gone has been running a Led Zeppelin poll. A huge poll containing each of the Zep studio recordings, rather than just letting fans come and choose their favourites, we structured things slightly differently. Voters were given nine votes and only allowed to pick one track from each of the albums.
A few people claimed this to be unfair – after all, when faced with an album as strong as Led Zeppelin’s fourth, how could you possibly choose ‘Stairway To Heaven’ over ‘The Battle of Evermore’, or even ‘When The Levee Breaks’ over the mighty ‘Black Dog’ with its huge riffs? How could only one vote be allocated to ‘Physical Graffiti’ – a sprawling double album featuring fifteen songs and at least seven cast iron classics? Therein lied the big challenge.
In September 2013, the Universal Music group announced an addition to their ever growing collection of lavish, multi-disc box sets. ‘Give Me Strength’, a near comprehensive collection of Eric Clapton’s 1974/75 studio sessions with the addition of a few unreleased nuggets became a reality. In addition to its two discs of studio recordings, the set also pulls together two discs of live material from the three concerts that spawned 1975’s ‘EC Was Here’ live album (nice, but all previously released on the ‘Crossroads 2: Live In The 70s’ four disc set).
In the 1990s, a deluxe edition (or special edition) album invariably meant a double disc set, ie: the original release plus bonus disc of rarities, b-sides and/or live tracks. In the 21st century, the big record companies have really expanded on this concept, with the “deluxe edition” now meaning multi-disc packages, in some cases retailing at a three-figure price point.