Doug Gray - vocals; Toy Caldwell - guitar, vocals; Tommy Caldwell - bass, vocals; George McCorkle - guitar; Jerry Eubanks - reeds; Paul Riddle - drums
Here we have a wonderful example of early Marshall Tucker Band live, just a few months after the release of their first album. Performances such as this one cemented their reputation as being the second greatest Southern rock band - right behind their good friends, The Allman Brothers Band, who headlined this night's show.
Listening to this performance, it is immediately apparent that this was no ordinary Southern rock band. With its amalgamation of soulful gospel singing, bluesy guitar riffs and jazzy reed sounds, Marshall Tucker had discovered a truly unique blend of country and rock.
This recording starts with the first song, "Hillbilly Band," already in progress. The tune - the first the group ever wrote - serves as a more than appropriate opener, showcasing all the best attributes of the group right off the bat. By the time they begin "Take The Highway," the audience is hooked. Toy Caldwell's searing guitar, Gray's soulful vocals and Eubank's flute riffs combine to create a countrified blend unlike any other at the time.
"Can't You See," the tune that effectively became the band's theme song, is up next, beginning subtly with Eubanks' flute and gradually building momentum. Toy Caldwell sings his heart out on this one, and Jaimoe from the Allman Brothers sits in adding additional percussive flavor.
"See You Later, I'm Gone," a fairly straightforward country tune, is next, followed by a fiercely-energetic "Ramblin." With its blistering, fast-paced rhythms and Doug Gray's formidable vocals, this drives it all home and leaves the audience panting in the dust for more.
When the group returns for the encore, they launch into a cover of B.B. King's classic "Everyday (I Have The Blues)." Delivered with spirited, superb jamming by all the band members, the tune would have certainly left the audience good and warmed up for the monumental Allman Brothers set still to come.
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