Unplugged (1991)

 
1. Be-Bob-A-Lula 2. I Lost My Little Girl 3. Here, There and Everywhere 4. Blue Moon of Kentucky 5. We Can Work it Out 6. San Francisco Bay Blues 7. I've Just Seen a Face 8. Every Night 9. She's a Woman 10.Hi-Heel Sneakers 11.And I Lover Her 12.That Would Be Something 13.Blackbird 14.Ain't No Sunshine 15.Good Rocking Tonight 16.Singing the Blues 17.Junk

 

Released very shortly after his mammoth stadium tour souvenir Tripping the Live Fantastic, this one does a complete 180 degree turn. This is a small, intimate, setting where Paul croons mostly golden oldies. I'm not sure why this one has the word "bootleg" in the title, but one thing that I do remember is that this CD was "out of print" for a long time shortly after it was released, so if you had a copy, it was a bit of a collector's item. Whatever the reason, it's back in circulation now.

Anytime you give Paul McCartney a musical instrument or two and put him in front of an audience, you're going to get some great results. He enjoys a crowd, and enjoys playing. He probably enjoyed this since the setting was so radically different from what he was used to throughout his career. Maybe it's the mixing of the album, but the audience doesn't sound like they're going too crazy over the songs. They're appreciative, sure, but that's about it. They seem a bit too toned down when having the opportunity to sit in right in front of one of the greats.

Paul chooses to stick to mostly older, unheard of stuff, and whereas it's nice to hear some unfamiliar songs, you have to wonder if the folks were expecting maybe a handful of more familiar tunes. At this point in his career, anything by The Beatles is recognizable, and this album has roughly one-third of some of the "lesser" known Beatles songs. He throws in some obscure (but good) solo songs from his career, but mostly does renditions of the old favorites from when he was younger. It's a bit easy to get this one confused with CHOBA B CCCP. Therefore, you almost wish that, since he just recently covered similar ground, that he may leave those covers on the shelf and do more of his own stuff. He certainly had enough material.

All in all this is a pleasant release, and to be fair, most critics and fans salivate over this one. I can't help to think it's a bit unnecessary despite all of its charms.

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