Rolling Stones – Drive Carefully (Vinyl Gang VGP-291)

Drive Carefully (Vinyl Gang VGP-291)

Folsom Field, Boulder, CO – October 4th, 1981

Disc 1 (59:06):  Under My Thumb, When The Whip Comes Down, Let’s Spend The Night Together, Shattered, Neighbours, Black Limousine, Just My Imagination, Twenty Flight Rock, Let Me Go, Time Is On My Side, Beast Of Burden, Waiting On A Friend, Let It Bleed

Disc 2 (65:39):  You Can’t Always Get What You Want, Little T & A, Tumbling Dice, She’s So Cold, All Down The Line, Band introduction, Hang Fire, Miss You, Start Me Up, Honky Tonk Women, Brown Sugar, Jumping Jack Flash, Street Fighting Man.  Bonus track, Folsom Field, Boulder, CO – October 3rd, 1981:  Tops

The Rolling Stones’ second of two shows at Folsom Field at the University of Colorado was first released on vinyl in 1982 Folsom Field (University of Colorado – Boulder).  The vinyl was copied on silver on Drive Carefully (P & C 1984 Concert Series MF-BC 1048) in 1991.  Three songs from a soundboard recording, “Brown Sugar,” “Jumping Jack Flash” and “Satisfaction” are found on Ride Like The Wind (The 1981 Collection) (Rattlesnake RS 041/042/043/044).  Vinyl Gang released Drive Carefully in 2001 and this remains so far the definitive silver edition of this tape.   

Still Life audience tapes are a dicey affair given the size of the venues.  This recording is very good sounding very clear but a bit thin.  A tape flip exists between cut between “Let Me Go” and “Time Is On My Side” and before “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” but no music is missing.

A majority of the concerts on this tour were played outdoors during the afternoon and the stage set up, with the large painting in pastel colors, presented a spectacular display.  This is the sixth show on the tour and is an energetic, happy and intriguing performance that easily sucks the listener into the show.  The opening song “Under My Thumb” serves as a declaration of intent.  For a decade of touring the Stones pretty much ignored their pre-Beggar’s Banquet output (except for “Satisfaction”).  But this tour saw the reintroduction of older tunes greatly expanding their live repertoire.

The day seems to have begun overcast but clears up early on in the show.  Jagger remarks “the sun is shining” before “Black Limousine.”  Before playing the Some Girls track “Beast Of Burden” Jagger asks, “How many of you were here in 1978…well for the newcomers, I hope you enjoy yourself.”

“You Can’t Always Get What You Want” was changed a bit to accommodate a saxophone solo.  Later on in the tour Ernie Watts joined the band and played jazzy cabaret style solos.  In Boulder the saxophone is handled by Lee Allen whose pedestrian playing renders the song rather flat.  After “Tumbling Dice” Jagger says:  “Bill wants to know something.  How many of you were at our first concert in Denver in 1966?  There was only twenty people there so we don’t expect you to say yes” to laughter as they go into “She’s So Cold.” 

“All Down The Line” follows and was not always played on this tour, making it in eighteen shows.  Playing “Miss You” signals the beginning of the finale with multiple hits played in a row.  “Start Me Up” is the current single and is received enthusiastically.   The final four songs all date from the late sixties output.   Mick loses misses a cue in “Jumping Jack Flash” somewhere in the middle but they pull it together.  At the end of the show Jagger tells the audience to drive carefully home, lending the tape its title.

Vinyl Gang include as a bonus the song “Tops” played at the first Boulder show on October 3rd.  This is a song that was played several times in the first week of the tour only to be dropped, never to reappear.  It’s a shame it was because it is an effective live piece.  It is good to have several recordings of the song however.  This set could have worked if it were a four disc set with both shows complete, but is still a strong title to have and is recommended because this is a fantastic concert in very good sound quality.  The packaging is the expected slimline double jewel case with high quality inserts and a photo from the tour on the front.  In the years since its release there have been no other making this really the definitive version of the audience recording. 

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  1. You’re correct, All Down The Line was played in all of the 1975 shows. What does that have to do with this?

  2. I think All Down The Line was actually played at all the 1975 shows. DP


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