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Rolling Stones – Cajun Queen’s Afternoon Delight (no label)

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 Cajun Queen’s Afternoon Delight (no label)

Dunkirk Hall, LSU, Baton Rouge, LA – June 1, 1975 (afternoon show)

Disc 1:  Fanfare For The Common Man, Honky Tonk Women, All Down The Line, If You Can’t Rock Me / Get Off Of My Cloud, Rocks Off, Ain’t Too Proud To Beg, Star Star, Gimme Shelter, You Gotta Move, You Can’t Always Get What You Want, band introduction, Happy, Tumbling Dice

Disc 2:  Luxury, Fingerprint File, Angie, That’s Life, Outa Space, Brown Sugar, Dance Little Sister, It’s Only Rock And Roll, Jumping Jack Flash, Street Fighting Man, Midnight Rambler

The Rolling Stones’ early show on June 1, 1975 is one of the most important over their forty-year career.  After being off of the road for more than a year and a half they were trying to return to live performance and fill the considerable shoes of the departed Mick Taylor.  In the preceding five years they increasingly relied upon his talents for their sound and there were obvious concerns about how to replace him.  Ron Wood of the Faces makes his debut with the band in this show after a considerable amount of rehearsing, which began in late April to May 4 at Andy Warhol’s church Estate in Montauk, Long Island.  Following the May 1 announcement for the tour on the back of a flatbed truck on 5th Avenue in New York, rehearsals continued in Hangar E in Stewart Airport in Newburg, New York from May 21. 

There was a final dress rehearsal in Baton Rouge on May 31, the day before the show, where they even worked on a version of “Slave.”  What follows is a nervous but generally effective performance.  The tape is very good and captures the dynamics of the show perfectly.  There are several cuts on the tape but one that eliminates part of “Outa Space” is the only one to be major.  The lowly tuned PA works against this tape, and there is some distortion present (most offensively during “Brown Sugar”) but overall is a very enjoyable experience.  This tape first surfaced on vinyl on the three LP set Cajun Queen’s Afternoon Delight (CS-1BR-75) (with the songs out of sequence and Billy Preston’s songs missing).  Others include the famous First Night Stand (TAKRL 2970) (missing the Preston songs and “Rocks Off,” “Happy,” and “Midnight Rambler”), and Recorded Live At Baton Rouge Louisiana June 1 1975 (Contra Band CBM RSBR A-D) (again missing the Preston songs and “Midnight Rambler.”) 

On compact disc it can be found on Baton Rouge 75 (Idol Mind 018/19), Somewhere Over The Rainbow, and Baton Rouge 75 (OBR).  The most recent release was in 2004 on the four-disc set First Night Stand (Vinyl Gang VGP 375) where it is paired with the evening show of the same day.  Cajun Queen’s Afternoon Delight is also very good with the treble cranked higher than the Vinyl Gang.  This is the trend of late for releases lately and this comes close to being too much.  Once one is into the concert it doesn’t become a concern, but the effect is a bit jarring at first.  Not only is this Ron Wood’s birthday, but is also the live debut for “If You Can’t Rock Me,” “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg,” “Luxury,” “Fingerprint File,” “Dance Little Sister,” and “It’s Only Rock And Roll.”  The tape begins in the middle of the “Fanfare For The Common Man” introduction before the band start with “Honky Tonk Women.” 

The concert staple “All Down The Line” follows before Jagger’s first words to the audience when he says, “We’ve never been here before in our lives.  The next one we’re gonna do is ‘If You Can’t Rock Me…’”  Afterwards there is some confusion on stage and Mick says, “I don’t know what we’re gonna do for the next number.  What are we gonna do, Keith?  How many of you come from New Orleans?  That’s a great noise.  How many come from Baton Rouge?  Pretty good.  I’ve forgotten it, complete forgotten this one.  We’ll try to remember it as we go along.”  They deliver a rusty, tentative version of “Rocks Off” and this proves to be its only appearance on this tour. 

Their cover of The Temptation’s “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg” follows.  “Star Star” is played much slower than other versions and Mick loses his place by the end throwing off the rest of the band.  ”Gimme Shelter” is much better as Wood nails down Taylor’s old solo.  Jagger invites Preston to come forward to help sing “You Gotta Move.”  This is the first performance of the full band electric version.  After “Happy” Mick again seems a bit confused, asking “what’s the next number, Keith?” “Fingerprint File” is one of the highlights in the set list on this tour.  It is played very deliberately and the audience cheer when Mick goes to bed at the end.  “Any requests?” Jagger asks afterwards.  “Fix the fucking PA” the taper shouts, and the volume does increase during the next number “Angie.”  After the Billy Preston numbers the band play “Brown Sugar” and a rare version of “Dance Little Sister.” 

This is the first of two performances on the tour with the second coming a week later on June 6 in Kansas City.  “It’s Only Rock And Roll,” a song that began life as a Ron Wood solo tune, is played for the first time and is followed by “Jumping Jack Flash” and a goofy version of “Street Fighting Man.”  “Midnight Rambler” is played as an encore in both the afternoon and evening shows on this day.  It would later be moved into the main set for the rest of the tour.  Mick’s vocals are treated to echo during the middle section and the band continues the main riff after the closing chord to whip the audience up into a final frenzy.  Cajun Queen’s Afternoon Delight is packaged in a double slimline jewel case with color glossy inserts.  There are photos of the May 1 press conference on the inside of the sleeve.  It is limited to only two hundred pressed copies.

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If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)

Rolling Stones - Cajun Queen's Afternoon Delight (no label), 2.5 out of 5 based on 1 rating

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