J.D. Souther - lead vocals, acoustic and electric guitars; Jimmy Bond - bass; Michael Botts - drums; Ned Doheny - guitar, background vocals; Robert "Waddy" Wachtel - guitar
Emerging from the same southern California folk-country-rock scene that delivered Linda Ronstadt, The Eagles and Jackson Browne, J.D. Souther has claimed more of a stake in the business as a successful songwriter than as a performer. He has written and co-written for countless artists, including the aforementioned Ronstadt, The Eagles, Browne and, additionally, James Taylor.
After moving to Los Angeles from Texas in his early twenties to pursue a career as a session musician and songwriter, Souther met up and rented an apartment with another aspiring singer/songwriter, Glenn Frey. The two formed a duo called Longbranch Pennywhistle. They got a deal on the small Amos label, but failed to release any chart-breaking hits. The experience did, however, spawn a songwriting relationship that would last for years. In the end, Souther and Frey penned several hits for Frey's next band, The Eagles - among them "Best of My Love," "Heartache Tonight" and "New Kid in Town."
Souther, moreover, produced, co-wrote and performed with his friend Linda Ronstadt on her 1973 chart-topping Don't Cry Now album. This experience led to an offer from David Geffen to be a part of a new super group he was forming with Poco's Richie Furray and The Byrds/Burrito Brothers mainstay Chris Hillman. Together as the Souther-Hillman-Furray band, they made two albums and went on two tours before breaking up in 1975.
It was shortly after the breakup of the SHF Band and during the making of his debut solo album that Souther played this show at San Francisco's Boarding House. As a solo artist, Souther was still getting his performer's legs on the ground, and this show is short and somewhat uneven as a result; but it gives a good idea, nonetheless, of the foundation he was building for future solo success.
Souther finally broke through with the hit title track of his 1979 album, You're Only Lonely. For fans of either this last hit or of all Souther's multifarious songwriting efforts, this show gives a stripped-down, candid presentation of a competent songwriter in the early, formative stages of his career - an artist with something real and genuine to express who was still finding the means through which to engage and express it.
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