Some might think it an odd distinction, but give or take his Boston homeboy Steven Tyler of Aerosmith, no rock star in the '70s anticipated rap music as thoroughly as Peter Wolf of the J. Geils Band. Like Tyler, his verbose tongue-twisting was clearly schooled in the funk and blues that formed the foundation of Geils' boogie rock. But Wolf's style was equally indebted to the jive-talking disc jockeys who dominated much of rock 'n' roll radio in the '50s and '60s. Born in 1946 in the Bronx, he was just the right age for them. So it's no surprise that his own entry in the music world was as a DJ, for Boston's underground FM rock station WBCN. Before long he took his microphone skills to the stage, first in a local band called the Hallucinations and then in the Geils Band, whose initial regional popularity expanded through the '70s, eventually climaxing with 1981's chart-topping Freeze-Frame before they imploded. Three years later, on his first solo album, Wolf made his hip-hop connection explicit by teaming up with electro-funk producer Michael Jonzun of the Jonzun Crew. He has released several more solo albums since, increasingly adopting a more adult alternative aesthetic.
Peter Wolf Concert Films
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 53 minThis episode features the eclectic, dynamic and wonderful Peter Wolf who is best known for his years fronting the J. Geils Band. Wolf's delivery is high velocity all the way with songs including: "Growin' Pain," "Long Way Back Again," "Nothing But The Wheel," "Long Line," "Homework," "Believe in Me," "Sleepless," "Cry One More Time," "All Torn Up" and "Waiting on The Moon." Wolf recently scored a record within Rolling Stone's list of the "500 Greatest Albums of All Time" with his solo release, "Sleepless." Throughout the evening, his soundscape washes through the audience and locks them into a syncopated, pulsating rhythm. His effervescent energy parallels performers half his age. His soulful vocals and rollicking persona culminate in a performance not to be missed.
Peter Wolf Top Tracks
Live in Dublin
Runtime: 2 hr 9 minRecorded over three nights at The Point Theatre in 2006, Live In Dublin features Bruce Springsteen and The Sessions Band tackling deep cuts from Springsteen's catalog and exciting folk covers in a raw, stripped-down style.
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 1 hr 33 minREO SPEEDWAGON LIVE IN THE HEARTLAND presents Kevin Cronin (lead vocals, guitar), Bruce Hall (bass), Neal Doughty (keyboards), Dave Amato (lead guitar) and Bryan Hitt (drums) performing a full-throttle, 16-song set that spans the band's celebrated 35-year career from the Number 1 charting "Keep On Loving You" and "Can't Fight This Feeling" to hits from their most recent album release Find Your Own Way Home.
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 54 minOne of the most loved bands in rock history, as well as one of the most commercially successful-with 50 hit songs in the U.S. alone, 18 gold records, a Grammy, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame Chicago have maintained the unflagging devotion of millions of devoted fans throughout their 37-year career. It began with the goal of incorporating the diverse musical range of their hometown Chicago, and incorporating the big-band aesthetic that included horns which had been virtually left behind in the world of rock and roll, Chicago went on to create a sound that remains unparalleled in rock music. Incorporating rock as only one genre among the many that they drew from, the band courageously rejected the trappings of celebrity in order for the music to stand on its own. This program documents a live show that was broadcast on PBS in June of 2003 where they play many of their hits from throughout their long career, including "25 or Six to Four," "You're the Inspiration," "Saturday in the Park," and "Beginnings," among many others.
Live in London
Runtime: 1 hr"Live In London" is a live performance masterpiece that captures The Pretenders at the top of their game. If you saw them live on their 2009 tour, you'll know what I'm talking about. You owe it to yourself to get this program as a reminder of just how amazing this band is on the road.
"Live In London" succeeds where The Pretenders' studio albums fail. They are one of those rare bands that truly does sound better when they're playing in front of an audience -- an intimate small theater crowd here.
With all due respect to original guitarist James Honeyman Scott and bassist Pete Farndon, The Pretenders latest lineup is the best Chrissie Hynde has ever staged. With the steady pounding of original drummer Martin Chambers, newcomers James Walbourne on guitar, Nick Wilkinson on bass and Eric Heywood on pedal steel rock from start to finish, revitalizing Pretenders' classics like "Message of Love" and "Kid," while adding new ones like "Boots of Chinese Plastic" to the playlist.
You'll be blown away by Walbourne's electrifying guitar work. It starts with the first licks of the opener "Chinese Plastic," scorches through "Rosalee," and climaxes with the show-stopper "Precious." Walbourne delivers pure, unadulterated, raw, rip-snorting rock 'n' roll. His on-stage chemistry with Hynde is self-evident.
As per usual, Hynde's vocals are impeccable, showing great range, dynamics and emotion, equally adept at punk rockers like "The Wait" and ballads like "I'll Stand By You." This woman has earned the right to work the stage with the swagger of a rock star. She is it.
The direction and camera work throughout "Live In London" give the viewer the perspective of being on stage with The Pretenders. Tight crops interspersed with effective wide angles make one feel like he can count the streaks of mascara multiplying on Hynde's face and see the beads of sweat building on Chambers' brow as the night rocks on.
Classic Albums: Damn The Torpedoes
Runtime: 56 minThis film tells the story behind the creation of this great rock 'n' roll album and the dramatic transformation in the band's career that took place following its release. Through interviews, new and archive performances and analysis we discover how Tom Petty, Mike Campbell, Benmont Tench, Ron Blair and Stan Lynch created their songs and sounds with the help of Co-Producer Jimmy Iovine and Engineer Shelly Yakus.
Live: Greetings from the West
Runtime: 1 hr 43 minDan Fogelberg Live - Greetings From The West is an intimate acoustic set from St. Louis' Fox Theatre, shot in 1991. It includes "Leader of the Band," "Road Beneath My Wheels," "The Power of Gold," "Same Old Lang Syne" and other favorites.
Live in Chicago
Runtime: 1 hr 54 minSoundstage captures a radiant Stevie Nicks in her first filmed solo performance since 1987. "Live In Chicago" includes all the timeless Nicks songs from her solo projects as well as songs written as a member of the legendary rockers Fleetwood Mac. Along with Stevie classics such as "Stand Back," "Rhiannon," "Dreams," "Gold Dust Woman," "Landslide" and "Edge Of Seventeen," the video also features stunning cover songs, including Dave Matthews' "Crash Into Me" and a tear-down-the-house finale of Led Zeppelin's "Rock And Roll."
Detour Live At Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
Runtime: 1 hr 46 minElvis Costello brings his solo show Detour to the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall. Combining classic songs performed with guitar or at the piano with reminiscences of his family, life and career, it is by turns touching, humorous, thoughtful and uplifting. The set features recent songs such as “Church Underground” and “Jimmie Standing In The Rain” alongside much loved tracks from across his career including “Watching The Detectives, ” “A Good Year For The Roses, ” “Accidents Will Happen, ” “Shipbuilding” and “I Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down” all given a new twist in their solo renditions. The show also features guest appearances by sister act Larkin Poe.
Live In Barcelona
Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band
Runtime: 2 hr 57 minRecorded in 2002, partly broadcast on CBS and performed to a crowd best described as “deliriously insane,” Barcelona captures the E Street Band with new addition Soozie Tyrell firing on all cylinders on the tour behind The Rising. Barcelona marked the first time that a complete Springsteen show was released on either audio or video.
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 55 minSmooth delivery, high-spirited melodies, that velvet voice and a soul-stirring rhythmic foundation. All are the elements that Steve Winwood brings to Soundstage featuring his recent work from the album About Time along with his classic hits including "Why Can't We Live Together" and "Back in the High Life." Winwood also performs "Dear Mr. Fantasy" and "The Low Spark of High-Heeled Boys" - hits from his days with Traffic (recently inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame).
Live at Shea Stadium
Runtime: 2 hr 21 minWith Beatlemania at its height in 1965, Shea Stadium in Queens, New York, was the site of the first stadium show ever by The Beatles, or any rock & roll band for that matter. The Beatles' Shea performances made an impression on a young working-class musician from Long Island named Billy Joel. When the Mets built a new stadium and said goodbye to Shea in 2008, the local native turned superstar was the logical choice to give it a proper sendoff.
The companion to the acclaimed documentary The Last Play At Shea, the premiere release of Billy Joel Live At Shea Stadium features a full concert-length program: more than two hours of hits, history, memories and guest stars including Paul McCartney, all in riveting performances worthy of the historic building where it all went down.
I’ll Do Anything: Live in Concert
Runtime: 1 hr 45 minJackson Browne's I'll do Anything Live In Concert features over 90 minutes of music from Jackson's entire body of work. Recorded during his 2012 Tour at the Paramount Theatre in Denver, CO, the release also features Sara Watkins, Sean Watkins, Tyler Chester, Fritz Lewak, and Val McCallum.
Front Row Center
Runtime: 55 minWell known for their four decades of almost non-stop touring and new music, the group combines their famous power pop and melodic sounds as they rock out in this special concert. Seventeen studio albums under their belt make for so many great songs including favorites like 'Surrender,' 'Dream Police' and 'I Want You to Want Me.'
Beneath this Gruff Exterior
Runtime: 54 minInventive performer and poignant songwriter John Hiatt captures the attention of fans and critics alike. In this Soundstage performance, which features Dar Williams and Robinella and the CCstringband, Hiatt performs "My Baby Blue" from his most recent album Beneath This Gruff Exterior. He also showcases timeless pieces like "The Thing Called Love" and "Memphis in the Meantime." Folk-rocker Dar Williams takes the stage to perform "I Saw a Bird Fly Away," a piece which encapsulates Williams' ability to combine sensitivity with not only pathos, but also a sharp wit. East Tennessee natives Robinella and the CCstringband close out the show with new songs including "Honey Honey Bee" and "Man Over." Both songs are a testament to the acclaim that this jazz-bluegrass-swing band has earned from not just critics, but fans and peers alike.
The Deep End: Face the Face
Runtime: 1 hr 27 minThis show was filmed for the famous German TV series Rockpalast at MIDEM in Cannes on 29th January 1986. Pete Townshend’s Deep End were touring in support of Townshend’s solo concept album “White City: A Novel”. Several of the musicians that appeared on the album were featured in the line-up of the Deep End including Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour on lead guitar. The set list has tracks from the “White City” album, other Pete Townshend solo tracks, Who classics, David Gilmour’s song “Blue Light” and a couple of surprises. Pete Townshend and the band deliver an outstanding performance that showcases him as a solo artist as distinct from his work with The Who.
Live in Holland, 1976
Runtime: 54 minLittle Feat are one of the most influential American bands of the seventies. Founded by Lowell George and Bill Payne in L.A. during 1969; they produced a series of highly original albums over the next decade featuring an eclectic blend of rock 'n' roll, blues, country, folk, soul, and jazz before the death of Lowell George in 1979, which brought the first phase of the band's existence to an end. This film captures the band's performance at the famous Dutch festival Pinkpop on June 7th, 1976 and captures the band's classic line-up at the peak of their powers performing many of their best known tracks.