Convention Center Atlantic City, NJ – December 19th 1989
Disc 1: Opening Continental Drift, Start Me Up, Bitch, Sad Sad Sad, Undercover Of The Night, Harlem Shuffle, Tumbling Dice, Miss You, Terrifying, Ruby Tuesday, Salt Of The Earth, Rock And A Hard Place, Mixed Emotions, Honky Tonk Women
Disc 2: Midnight Rambler, You Can’t Always Get What You Want, Little Red Rooster, Boogie Chillun’, Can’t Be Seen, Happy, Paint It Black, 2000 Light Years From Home, Sympathy For The Devil, Gimme Shelter
Disc 3: band introductions, It’s Only Rock And Roll, Brown Sugar, (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction, Jumpin’ Jack Flash, outro Carmen. Bonus tracks: 2000 Light Years From Home (Barcelona, Spain – June 13th, 1990), I Just Wanna Make Love To You (London, England – July 6th, 1990), Play With Fire (Clemson, SC – November 26th, 1989), Undercover Of The Night (Atlantic City, NJ – December 19th, 1989), Harlem Shuffle (Tokyo, Japan – February 27th, 1990), Tumbling Dice (London, England – August 24th, 1990), Street Fighting Man (London, England – August 25th, 1990), Gimme Shelter
When the Rolling Stones avoided slipping into history in the mid eighties and decided they had more to say as a band, they came back with a big bang. Steel Wheels, released on August 29th 1989 was their first studio album in three years and in peaking at number 3 on the Billboard charts was their highest position since 1981’s Tattoo You. The Steel Wheels/Urban Jungle tour lasted for a full year and took in 115 shows around the world. The American ended with three shows at the Convention Center in Atlantic City, New Jersey on December 17th, 19th, and 20th. And to celebrate the end of one of their most successful tours they decided to broadcast the second show as a pay-per-view event on Showtime. The Stones were one of the first bands to utilize this with a pay-per-view broadcast in December 1981, but for this event they pulled out all the stops with a long set list and many surpise guest.
This two and a half hour extravaganza guaranteed to be a great underground release and is one of the most popular Stones titles in existence. It has been pressed on vinyl several times. Atlantic City ‘ 89(Canjun Records ABC) is sourced from the broadcast but is missing “Happy,” “Tumbling Dice,” “Terrifying,” and “Can’t Be Seen.” Both Terrifying (Buccaneer 022/2) Atlantic City (Caution J 100) are three LP sets with the complete show.
The most famous release on compact disc is Atlantic City ‘ 89 (The Swinging Pig TSP-CD-075-3). This has the complete show from the broadcast and the first four versions are three disc sets and the fifth and final contains an extra bonus disc. This was released at the beginning of the protection gap era and was set up to challenge European copyright laws. The first edition was sold in German record stores and was reported to have sold over 75,000 copies. After a court challenge Swingin’ Pig omitted the cowbell intro to “Honky Tonk Women” to avoid copyright infringement.
Live In 1989, Steel Wheels U.S. Tour Vol. 3/4/5 (7747/7748/7749) is a three disc set missing “Terrifying,” “Can’t Be Seen,” and “Jumping Jack Flash” is incomplete. This was copied on Terrifying (COC 12191-3). Atlantic City Volume 1,2,3 is a copy of the third version of The Swingin’ Pig release but has a shortened version of “2000 Light Years From Home.” The complete concert can be found on Terrifying (Buccaneer 022/2), Atlantic City ‘ 89 (Dandelion DL 026-29) (which is a copy of the fifth edition, four disc set of The Swingin’ Pig), Atlantic City ‘ 89 (Dandelion DL 026-29), and A Roll Of The Dice (Phoenix Records D356467). In 2003 Mid Valley released Nineteen (The Rolling Stones With Eric Clapton) (MVR 185-189). This is a six disc set with the October 19th, 1989 Los Angeles show. Atlantic City was released seperatey on Cocaine And Kiss (Mid Valley MVR187-189). Finally Vinyl Gang released Terrifying (VGP 231) with this show plus seven bonus tracks.
SODD’s version of the show is similar to the Vinyl Gang. They increased the gain on the tape making it sound slightly brighter resembling a King Biscuit Flower Hour. The entire show spans two and a half discs and for the international broadcast they bring out all the stops. 1989 was the return of The Rolling Stones after years of squabbling between Mick and Keith, and in addition to featuring songs from Steel Wheels they also bring out lots of rarities and songs one would never think they would play on stage like “2000 Light Years From Home” from Their Satanic Majestie’s Request. All three shows would feature guest appearances. On this recording Axl Rose and Izzy Stratlin from Guns N Roses join them onstage for a rare rendition of “Salt Of The Earth.” The only previous live appearance was in the Rock And Roll Circus where Jagger sang the words over pre-recorded instruments. It would be in the set for all three Atlantic City shows and wouldn’t be played again until the 2001 Concert For New York.
Eric Clapton joins them for “Little Red Rooster” and “Boogie Chillun’.” And Jagger introduces one of their heroes John Lee Hooker to sing on “Boogie Chillun'” and these shows were the first time they ever covered this blues classic on stage. The show ends with a long version of “Satisfaction” and the final track contains the Toreador Song from Bizet’s Carmen and the prelude to act three of Wagner’s Die Walküre over the PA. Seven of the bonus tracks are also found on the Vinyl Gang (albeit in different order). The final track is a live version of “Gimme Shelter” from the tour which was released as a single for the Putting Our House In Order project in 1993. The Food Records project collected various versions of the track by the following bands and collaborations, the proceeds of which went to the Shelter charity’s “Putting Our House in Order” homeless initiative. The versions were issued across various formats, and had a live version of the song by The Rolling Stones as a common lead track to ensure chart eligibility. This is a very good version of the tape by SODD and is worth having.