Thursday, January 08, 2009

Blasts from the past

I fancy myself to be somewhat encyclopedic about musicians that I love... I seem to remember incredible minutiae about what their career arcs are, what guitars they played, what albums came out when, on what label, etc.

Imagine my surprise when, in the course of doing a little research into the first Tony Williams Lifetime band, I read the Wikipedia entry on them and discovered that, between the last of the Tony Williams Lifetime lineups in 1972 and the New Tony Williams Lifetime lineup in 1975 (whose first album, Believe It, introduced much of the world to the amazing guitar work of Allan Holdsworth), there was a version of the band called Wildlife that recorded tracks for an album that was never released. The band included Jack Bruce and Holdsworth.

Somehow, after 34 years had gone by, I had never know of this, despite otherwise knowing about virtually everything else Holdsworth ever did, not to mention Williams and Bruce.

Either I knew it and aliens erased this memory when they abducted me, or I really somehow never knew about it at all.

At any rate, bootlegs of the tapes (often referred to as the Stockholm Tapes) seem to exist, and recently someone posted them on YouTube with as a static, music-only video file. I've added them to my YouTube favorites if you want to check them out.

Very interesting stuff. I've never heard the prior Lifetime album, The Old Bum's Rush, so I don't know whether or not it's along those lines, but it's certainly very different than the New Tony Williams Lifetime material was in 1975-76.

Every so often something like this pops out of the woodwork. Usually it's somewhat disappointing - things left unreleased often were that way for a good reason.