Fuel 2000's Sold Out! The Greatest Rock & Roll Show in the World unfortunately does not capture the legendary piano triumvirate of Fats Domino, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Little Richard at the peak of their performing skills. To begin with, Fats Domino takes his tunes at a slower pace than on the original records, thereby throwing his band off as they try and goose the tempo along, especially on "Blueberry Hill." The lone highlight from Fats' set is "Walkin' to New Orleans," which improves immensely sans the sappy string arrangement. Next up is "The Killer," whose actual performance is indifferent, but during "Drinkin' Wine Spo Dee-O-Dee," a jarring change in sound quality occurs making it obvious that this tune is taken from an entirely different era and spotlights a much younger and wilder Jerry Lee Lewis. Evidently continuity wasn't a concern when assembling these tracks. Little Richard's set suffers from the opposite of what hindered Fats Domino's, in that his pickup band can't keep up with him. The tentative horn section and an extremely loud bass player, who loves his fuzz pedal, are unsure of how the tunes go. Making matters worse, the boisterous Little Richard gives them specific directions on the bandstand, like what to play and when to play it! By the time of "Reddy Teddy," which is taken at warp speed, Richard splits after singing the first few lines, leaving the band to vamp for the remainder. No doubt Mr. Penniman was a tad anxious to get the show over with. If that wasn't bad enough, during the entirety of Richard's set, his voice and piano are only audible on the right channel and, more often than not, are drowned out. (For what it's worth, "Rip It Up" is also included as a hidden bonus track.) While the liner notes are well written and generally informative in tracing the careers of these three piano pounders, there is no indication whatsoever of where, when, or why these tracks were recorded. Rock & roll heroes of the caliber of Fats Domino, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Little Richard deserve better than this and so do their fans.
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AllMusic Review by Al Campbell