The Flying Burrito Brothers

Authorized Bootleg: Fillmore East, New York, N.Y. - Late Show, November 7, 1970

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The Fillmore East show captured on this Authorized Bootleg occurred on November 7, 1970, not long after Gram Parsons and Chris Ethridge left the Flying Burrito Brothers and were replaced by Rick Roberts and Bernie Leadon. Head Burrito Brother Chris Hillman rounded out this lineup with Byrds drummer Michael Clarke and legendary steel guitarist Sneaky Pete Kleinow, all of which means that while this lineup lacked the star power of Parsons, it nevertheless packs considerable musical punch, the band sounding assured, in no way suggesting it's a group whose lineup is in flux. Apart from a few covers -- the storming closer “Six Days on the Road,” the instrumental “Dixie Breakdown,” and a nicely grooving “Willie and the Hand Jive” -- and the Roberts original “Feel Good Music,” the set list is culled entirely from the first two Burrito albums, slightly emphasizing faster material that suits a band whose playing is as propulsive as a motorcycle. And that’s the truly distinctive thing about this performance: its sheer velocity. The Burrito Brothers play like they have something to prove, hitting the chords harder on the rockers and never mellowing on the ballads. For those who love the 1972 live LP Last of the Red Hot Burritos, this is arguably a bit better; for anybody who tends to write off the post-Parsons Burritos, it’s a revelation.

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