Way Back In The Hills (Eat A Peach EAT 90)
(70:17) Blue Moon Swamp World Premier, May 12, 1997 – Broadcast May 18, 1997 KTXQ-FM Dallass-Ft. Worth – Hosted by Red Beard, Small Recording Studio, Los Angeles, California, USA – Born On The Bayou, Blueboy, Bad Moon Rising, Joy Of My Life, Swamp River Days, Proud Mary, Fortunate Son
VH-1 Presents John Fogerty Hard Rock Live 1997 – Born On The Bayou, Green River, Walking In A Hurricane, I Put A Spell On You, Centerfield, Hot Rod Heart, Bad Moon Rising, Proud Mary, Fortunate Son, A Hundred And Ten In The Shade (with The Fairfield Four on backing vocal)
Buddy Holly Tribute, PBS Special, December 1987 – It’s So Easy, Cottonfields, Rave On
Way Back In The Hills from Eat A Peach features three John Fogerty recordings all taken from professional sources. Fogerty released Blue Moon Swamp on May 20, 1997 and performances promoting the new record are the main focus of this release. This is a return to the stage for John “so to speak” as this was his first record in a decade and John really didn’t miss a beat as the album would go on to win Best Rock Album at the 40th Grammy Awards the following year.
The first part of the disc comes directly from a broadcast so we are treated to a great sounding recording. There is a certain amount of compression usually associated with radio which can be expected but this runs slightly hot. The broadcast has Fogerty premiering some new tracks mixed with Creedence classics. His guitar has a nice little crunchy edge to it which works well during “Born On The Bayou”, and as for the “oldies”, he plays them very close to the CCR arrangements.
“Blueboy” is a track from his latest LP, Blue Moon Swamp, and Fogerty proves that he still has it in both his fingers and writing. Following “Bad Moon Rising”, “Joy Of My Life” brings a nice change of pace and is played on dobro with slide. “Swamp River Days” is also from the new LP and sounds like another catchy Fogerty riff that is right at home with the classics. “Proud Mary” is described by John as one of three songs that’s “better than me” and says “I want to thank the Mississippi River for that gift” after. He closes the program with the expected fan favorite “Fortunate Son”. (The last three tracks were accidentally left off the artwork but the label rectifies this by including a sticker on the outer plastic sleeve with the missing tracks)
The VH-1 portion sounds even better than the FM broadcast and is less compressed. He has some interesting dialog with the crowd as he explains “This is the rig I used to play a long time ago. That amplifier there was at Woodstock…the first one”. He even breaks out the Baseball Bat guitar (featured on the cover) for “Centerfield” but explains that it was never really a bat but does have the “Official Louisville Slugger stamp” logo. He also includes new tracks “Walking In A Hurricane”, “Hot Rod Heart”, and “A Hundred And Ten In The Shade”, the latter which features the Fairfield Four on backing vocals as it did on the Blue Moon Swamp LP. The strength of this new material again stands up to the Creedence classics but it is, of course, songs like “Born On The Bayou”, “Proud Mary” and “Fortunate Son” that bring the house down.
The remainder of the title is filled out with three live tracks from the Buddy Holly Tribute, a PBS Special from 1987. “Cottonfields” has a really nice vocal introduction and “Rave On” simply rocks. This is great bonus material to fill out the disc.
For the packaging, Eat A Peach use their single pocket mini-LP style jacket and include a 4-page booklet, no essay, just photos this time around. All the sources here sound great to say the least and are very enjoyable. John Fogerty doesn’t see too much action on silver boots these days and the label delivers a nice classy production. Fogerty has had a huge impact and influence on the face of Rock n’ Roll and whether or not you agree with his politics, his talent and songwriting ability is certainly undeniable. Way Back In The Hills from Eat A Peach is highly recommended for even the most casual of collectors.
“Of course I’d vote for Hillary,” Fogerty said. “I’m a life-long liberal, and for me, that has always translated into being a Democrat.”
As Fogerty has NEVER made any secret of this, I am surprised that you say “whether or not you agree with his
politics … “. They might be a bit boring but they’re hardly worth citing to qualify an otherwise favourable review unless, of course, CMR is a haven for the Trump camp and nobody told me!
CMR is not affiliated with any political party or world leaders for that matter. Some people won’t support certain artists, actors, or public figures based on their political or social views and that would be a shame as this is a fine release from Eat A Peach with some great performances from one of rocks pioneers. My comment wasn’t meant to start a political discussion so I will apologize if anyone took it that way.