The Rolling Stones – Mahalo Nui Loa, Hawaii (The definitive first night) (Golden Eggs – Egg 124)

The Rolling Stones – Mahalo Nui Loa, Hawaii (The definitive first night) (Golden Eggs – Egg 124)

Brown Sugar / Bitch / Rocks Off / Gimme Shelter / It’s All Over Now / Happy / Tumbling Dice / Sweet Virginia / band introductions / Dead Flowers / you Can’t Always Get What You Want / All Down The Line / Midnight Rambler / Live With Me / Rip This Joint / Jumping Jack Flash / Street Fighting Man – Bonus track – Radio promo advertisement for Rolling Stones concert in Honolulu, 1973.

HIC Arena, Honolulu, HI, January 21st, 1973.

Long one of the staples of the Stones Bootleg range, of the three shows that the Stones played at the HIC arena, Honolulu, the first night is the most bootlegged with, at the time of writing, a mind boggling 19 different variations – Including The Godfather Records, “Methodical Slow-Burn in Honolulu” – complete or incomplete, all looking like they’re from the same tape – That is Dave and Donn’s – a pair of tapers who were prolific in the early 70’s at capturing shows together. The tapes were given up to JEMS (A crack team of tapers – and so much more – themselves) to transfer and liberate to the collectors community. This particular recording was bundled together through an archive series and forms the greater part of of some of your earlier collection. The night itself was the second of the Pacific tour – Itself an almost ‘extension’ of the STP tour from the year before and the band, coming out of their Christmas break, were just as energised as before if not a little better. They had big shoes to fill this evening as, from the liner notes, Elvis had played the venue previously through a syndicated satellite show and when the eyes of the world are upon you .. Where to go next? 

One person, known as Captain Acid, requested the raw transfers of these recordings and this is where the latest pressing on Golden Eggs appears to be from. Originally uploaded to the internet in December 2019, ’Thank You for Your Wine, Honolulu’ was gently reworked from it’s original transfer, uploaded to various sites and forums and now forms, ‘Mahalo Nui Loa, Hawaii’.

Suggesting a ‘definitive’ in terms, this is a very good recording from the time with the right amount of rowdy audience interaction and the band tearing it up on stage – They were obviously making sure that any of the King’s efforts to put on a great show were made obsolete buy the worlds greater rock and rollers. There are a couple of shifts to the recordings almost as if the tape is a composite of two different recordings (if we’e to assume that both Dave and Donn each held a recorder – though the way it has been mixed levels the sound out nicely and it’s cuts don’t jar. Another of the main draws to this recording is the inclusion of ‘Live With Me’ that was dropped from the rest of this and the European leg of the tour, among with another couple of era reflective rarities.  

The tape starts up around 30 seconds before the band enter on to the stage, and includes whoops and hollers of the excitable audience right at the at the beginning, the band begin with a hammer heavy, ‘Brown Sugar’, at the 1:55 mark, the tape seems to switch to a more muffled sound, almost like a different source, whether this is a different tape merge (My impression) or simply just movement of the mikes, who knows). It’s worth noting that the acoustic section (’Sweet Virginia’, ‘Dead Flowers’) sounds just as good as the rest of the electric set, Charlie’s shuffles, loud enough to be apparent without taking steam off of the rest of the band. 
There’s a neat little bonus at the end, straight from the radio, you can relive the excitement of the announcement of the Stones bringing their latest show to your local venue – With all it’s AM glory – The fidelity is a shade below the actual audience recording but it’s a nice little sting to stick on the end of the main attraction. 

The packaging utilises William Stouts classic ‘Stone head’ portrait line-up in deep red and yellow tones. The interior of the gatefold has some beautiful colour photos from the Hawaiian shows and a new set of liner notes describing the shows and the events surrounding them.

Almost certainly a ‘must have’, the show is described as one of Dave and Don’s best, the remastering touch keeps it levelled. Highly recommended for all!

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