Sweet Home Chicago 1981 (Dog N Cat DAC-004)
Rosemont Horizon, Chicago, IL – November 24th, 1981
Checkerboard Lounge, Chicago, IL – November 22nd, 1981
Disc 1: Under My Thumb, When The Whip Comes Down, Let’s Spend The Night Together, Shattered, Neighbors, Black Limousine, Just My Imagination, Twenty Flight Rock, Going To A Go-Go, Let Me Go, Time Is On My Side, Beast of Burden, Waiting On A Friend, Let It Bleed
Disc 2: You Can’t Always Get What You Want, Band introductions, Little T & A, Tumbling Dice, She’s So Cold, Hang Fire, Miss You (with Sugar Blue), Honky Tonk Women, Brown Sugar, Start Me Up, Jumping Jack Flash, Satisfaction, Star Spangled Banner
Disc 3: Baby Please Don’t Go, Hootchie Cootchie Man, Long Distance Call, Mannish Boy, Next Time You See Me, Talking About My Woman, Champagne And Reefer
The first two discs on this new release from Dog N Cat covers the November 24th Chicago gig at the Rosemont Horizon. Vinyl Gang released an audience recording of this same gig earlier in the year on In The Windy City (VGP-371) coupled with the Atlanta Fox Theater show on the same tour. Sweet Home Chicago 1981 utilizes the newly released excellent soundboard.
Just like the Seattle and San Francisco boards there are some cuts in the tape, but this one has a big twenty minute cut right in the middle, beginning at 2:05 in “Time Is On My Side” and ending at 1:40 in “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” where the soundboard picks up again. The beginning of the tape is also absent.
The very good sounding audience recording is used for the mc (no “Take The A Train” in this show) and the first ninety seconds of “Under My Thumb” and for the big gap in the middle. The sonic difference doesn’t detract from the enjoyment of the show, however, and the manufacturers did a phenomenal job with the seamless edits.
The concert itself is very spirited and perhaps one of the best from this tour. Spending several days in Chicago seems to have fired up the band. The opening numbers are delivered at a frightening pace and it never lets up. Bluesman Sugar Blue crashes the proceedings and reprises his harmonica in “Miss You” to the delight of the band. And this is one show where the horn section is really enjoyable, especially in “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”.
The third disc of this set contains the soundboard of the often-released November 22nd Checkerboard Lounge set with Muddy Waters. It’s a treat to hear the band jamming with the blues legend. The interplay between Muddy and Mick and Keith is pure magic! The only problem here is that only about half of the set is included. Why the entire set wasn’t included is a mystery and the only negative against this title. This oversight aside Sweet Home Chicago 1981 is definitely worth having.