Steve Goodman

Live from Austin City Limits and More [Video/DVD]

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Steve Goodman performed twice on Austin City Limits, on September 9, 1977, and again on January 17, 1982, and the 11 songs he played on the first show, plus the seven he did on the second show, make up the bulk of this video. In 1977, the 29-year-old Goodman, sporting long hair and a beard, is surprisingly animated for a man alone with an acoustic guitar, jumping and dancing and taking a cappella vocals during such songs as "The 20th Century Is Almost Over." He is a bundle of energy, only slowing down in the encores for a deliberate reading of "My Old Man." The footage then jumps ahead to October 15, 1983, less than a year before his death, when he is interviewed at Wrigley Field on his lifelong love of the Chicago Cubs and sings "A Dying Cub Fan's Last Request" after saying he did not have himself in mind when he wrote it, despite his bout with leukemia. Back at Austin City Limits in 1982, a more restrained performer than the pixie from 1977 gives confident renditions of such favorites as "City of New Orleans," joined by mandolinist Jethro Burns. The seventh tune, "Souvenirs," is actually one from John Prine's set at the same taping, for which Prine brings Goodman up as a guest. The 90 minutes of performance clips end with a February 6, 1978, studio rendition of "You're the Girl I Love" from Goodman's then-recently released album Say It in Private. Also included is a 30-minute documentary on Goodman consisting of interview segments with Prine, Kris Kristofferson, Marty Stuart, Arlo Guthrie, Goodman's widow, and his manager, all discussing his career. The result is a well-rounded look at Goodman featuring good performances of some of his best songs and insight into what he was like.