I uploaded this rare 1978 live recording from the Montreux Jazz Festival to the Drunkard in October of 2005 as part of the original Live Upload Series. I suspect many of you were not readers back then so it’s with great pleasure I share it again here. I have several live albums from this New Orleans piano master, and this one is by far the best. Very raw arrangements with Booker backed by a loose pick-up band. Spiders on keys, indeed.

If you are unfamiliar with James Booker and/or traditional New Orleans piano-based music, this set – and a Professor Longhair collection – are a fine introduction. The video below of Booker performing “Papa Was A Rascal” is taken either from a French television performance from the same year — presumably from the same tour — or from the Montreux session itself. The exact date of the video is up for debate among fans.

James Booker :: Medley: Pretty Baby/Winin’ Boy Blues
MP3: James Booker :: Pixie
MP3: James Booker :: Medley: Penny Lane/I Saw Her Standing There
MP3: James Booker :: True
MP3: James Booker :: The Long Last Laugh
MP3: James Booker :: Junco Partner
MP3: James Booker :: Look What I’ve Got
MP3: James Booker :: Medley: Tipitina/The Grass Looks Greener
MP3: James Booker :: Papa Was A Rascal
MP3: James Booker :: Let’s Make A Better World

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