Billy Blough - bass, vocals; Hank Carter - saxophone; Steve Chrismar - guitar; Jeff Simon - drums; George Thorogood - vocals, lead guitar; guest: Elvin Bishop - guitar
George Thorogood was living in Delaware and playing on a minor league baseball team in 1970 when he happened to attend a show by blues artist John Hammond. For Thorogood, that was his epiphany--the moment when decided to take his long time interest in playing blues guitar and turn it into a lasting career.
He gave up his baseball career and formed a band with area musicians called the Delaware Destroyers. The Destroyers, as they soon became known, built a solid following in the bars, and in 1973 took the leap forward, moving to Boston, where there was a thriving blues scene. A collection of demos was released on a small indie entitled Better Than The Rest (through licensing agreements, the LP would later be released on MCA Records after Throgood became popular, which angered him).
The Destroyers gradually became one of the most popular Boston-based blues-rock acts and in 1977 Rounder Records, one of the biggest regional blues and folk indie labels, heard the group and signed them. The initial LP for Rounder made a little noise, but it was the band's second Rounder release, Move It On Over, featuring its blistering hard rockin' cover of the Hank Williams' classic that firmly put the group on the international music scene.
By now, the band was called George Thorogood & the Destroyers and with Move It On Over, they had a gold record. Thorogood and the band then moved over to the bigger, international EMI label, who were determined to break the band worldwide. It did. With the release of Bad to the Bone, Thorogood and company saw platinum success. They continued a steady streak of blues rock album through 1992 that were all gold. By the end of the 80s, the group's large college/drinking crowd had morphed into solid cult following.
This show, originally presented by Bill Graham at San Francisco's Warfield Theater, is a classic Destroyers show from the mid 1980s. Highlights include Thorogood's re-make of Bo Didley's "Who Do You Love?" and a sassy medley of "I Drink Alone" into John Lee Hooker's "One Bourbon, One Scotch, and One Beer" (featuring a guest appearance by Elvin Bishop). Thorogood and company also offer up a pair of Chuck Berry classics in "Memphis" and "Reelin' and Rockin;'" as well as the obligatory hits, "Bad To The Bone," "Gear Jammer," and "Move It On Over."
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