In 2000 an archive concert recording of The Byrds was released, taken from performances at the Fillmore West on February 7th and 8th, 1969. This was shortly after the release of Dr Byrds & Mr Hyde, and so was one of the earliest performances with the newly configured lineup of founder Roger McGuinn (lead vocals & 12-string guitar) with new members Clarence White (lead guitar), John York (bass) and Gene Parsons (drums). This period saw the band's album sales slow down, but at the same time they put on a much better live show than the 'classic' line-up could ever do, boasting far better musicians all round. It was also the period when they fully embraced their new country-rock style.
In fact almost all of the songs on this live album are country-based, including covers of country classics such as "Close Up The Honky Tonks", "The Christian Life", "Sing Me Back Home" and "Buckaroo", along with a large number of songs from the most recent album. Their days as highly-regarded folk-rock pioneers are given a nod with a few of their earlier hits (three of them stringed together into a medley), but otherwise these recordings are definately of a country-rock band. Compared to their later live recordings on (Untitled), it's a much more laid-back affair. Certainly not essential listening, but should prove very interesting for Byrds fans.
More from The Byrds