John Mayall

Live at the Marquee 1969

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This set was recorded at a June 30, 1969, performance at London's famous Marquee club. At that time, Mayall had just formed and started gigging with the drumless band that would play on what was (other than the Bluesbreakers' sole album with Eric Clapton) probably his most popular recording, The Turning Point. The set happened to be recorded because Mayall and his band were being filmed for a documentary, also called The Turning Point, which though released in the early '70s has rarely been shown. So far, all sounds good as far as signs indicating that this CD might be an interesting relic for Mayall fans. It's not, though, primarily because the sound is pretty crummy, on the order of an average live bootleg of the era. Actually, the instruments come through with fair (though not good) clarity, but the vocals are tinny, distant, and often indistinct. What's more, all seven of the these tracks (including two versions of "California") are available, with virtually the same arrangements and immensely superior sound, on the expanded CD version of the official album The Turning Point, recorded a mere two weeks later. Unless you're dying to hear the brief bit of "Sunshine of Your Love" that crops up in "So Hard to Share," there's no reason to pick this up when The Turning Point essentially captures the same band and the same set at the same moment in time, but with much better sound.

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