Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Legends Live at Montreux 1997 |
Actors: Steve Gadd, Joe Sample, Eric Clapton, Marcus Miller, David Sanborn
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
Legends is one of the most musically accomplished super groups of all time. With Eric Clapton on guitar, Joe Sample of The Crusaders on keyboards, virtuoso saxophone player David Sanborn and super session players Steve Gad... more »
All Star Band
L. A. Warner | Pennsylvania, USA | 09/18/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"When you look at the lineup for this band, how can you not buy this DVD! Great setting, the camera work is excellent, the audio is very good (except for two songs, see below).
The set list is a nice mix of jazz and blues, containing both outright jams as well as a few more mellow tunes. Realize these guys are not fantastic showmen, but they are incredible musicians so buy it for that reason. I've always been a Sanborn and Joe Sample fan and neither disappoint, delivering soulful performances. Steve Gadd is his ususal flawless self and Marcus Miller on bass is superb. Although Clapton is very good, his sound and some of his solos don't seem to fit with some of the songs. A little too much of a rock sound. At times I wish he had opted for the Gibson guitar (like he did on One more car, One more rider) to get that smoother, cleaner jazz sound on some of the tunes. All in all though, the musicianship is outstanding as you would expect from these guys.
As I said the sound quality is very good. It would be excellent had they not botched up what could be the best song on the disc. It's one of two times Clapton uses an acoustic and you can barely hear anything he plays...very disappointing. However, Joe Sample has an excellent solo here. Also, on the closing song (which is great) the mike is messed up and his voice fades in and out.
The video quality (along with the couple of audio issues above) is the main reason I don't give this 5 stars. If you are not watching this on a large screen HDTV, then don't bother reading any further as the issues are a moot point for you. The camera work is excellent in terms of capturing the concert and it looks great on a 32 inch CRT. The downer is it was shot in 4:3 and doesn't view near as well on a 52 inch HDTV. It loses some clarity on the full screen and there are faint white vertical lines that are noticable when there is a dark back drop. I thought it was the lighting at first, but now I don't think that is the case. I realize I'm being a little picky here but it just seems strange that the video has the look of 'widescreen' (black bars top and bottom) without the actual benefit of being shot in 16:9.
Regardless, I am still very happy to have this in my collection. These are some of the best musicians in the business and if you are a fan of their music, it's worth the buy."
Mario G. Perez Fonseca | Guitarland | 11/12/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"They say you become a legend after you die, but these guys are truly living legends. Amazing musicianship from the top in their fields. Clapton is at his best on this video, and although not a jazz musician, he brings the best of his blues-rock chops to this eclectic, fusion mix.
The viewer is treated to electric and acoustic sets, being the electric ones my favorites. The song that is worth the price of the whole DVD alone, in my humble opinion is 'Put it where you want it'. Amazing, energetic solos by Sanborn, Clapton and Sample.
About the DVD itself. Audio transfer is flawless, with DTS and Dobly tracks, you get a crisp, kind of live quality to the show.
The video is letterbox format, great for concerts, but colors seem to be a little washed off, my bootleg copy from japanese Tv seems to have more quality to it. No extras on this dvd :( and only a very straightforward menu animation.
For it's price, this is one of the best concerts out there, especially if you are a Clapton fan, but Sanborn and Miller also deliver the goods like no other. Recommended"
An exciting mixture of skilled musicians playing with zest
Ulf Nystrom | Gothenburg, Sweden | 09/27/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As I attended one the few concerts in July 1997 by ?Legends?, in Copenhagen, and liked it, I have now and then looked for a CD issue. Now, after 8 years, it is here as a DVD! It is an exciting mixture of skilled musicians, all of them seem inspired. They give each other space, essential in improvisational jazz music, which this to a certain extent is. Joe Sample and David Sanborn really show their skill as jazz musicians, and so of course Steve Gadd. When I had watched this DVD, I took out some old Crusaders stuff and realised that Joe was a real first class player even back then, even if I didn?t realise that at that time. Marcus Miller plays vividly in a funky style, inspired by Jaco Pastorius but no copy of him, he is a brilliant musician. His bass clarinet on ?In a sentimental mood/Layla ? brings a fresh touch. Eric Clapton, not being a jazz musician, is here a musical deviant, a very skilled such, and valiant. First I thought, it?s a pity that Clapton uses Stratocaster only (except some acoustic) and not bringing his Gibson ?Jazz Box?, L5 I think. Then I realised that it is physically impossible to play as Clapton does here on Stratocaster, on a ?Jazz Box?. That would force Clapton to a playing style which would limit his extraordinary skills as an improvisational guitarist, a skill he has in rock and blues, and not in jazz. If he tries to be at he same improvisational jazz level as his colleagues, using a Jazz Box, he would fail. (For those who don?t know, I can tell that the set of chords and chord progression used in jazz differs from those used in rock and blues music). I felt that stronger a couple of years later, when I read a Clapton interview for Guitar Player magazine. An extract of that interview is found in the DVD-sleeve:
?All the time that I knew I could play blues, I was still very insecure about my standing as a legitimate musician. I didn?t feel I could sit and have a conversation with a jazz player about music because they were on a higher level than me. Yet I?ve found over the last few years that I can approach any kind of music and bring a unique point of view to it. For example, when I toured with the Legends band, I thought I wasn?t worthy to play with them. But even though I felt I wasn?t in their league, when we talked about music, I realised, ?Hey, I do know enough to stand alongside these guys and play? ?.
I understand Clapton?s respectful attitude, although being, as stated in the DVD-sleeve, ?the world?s most famous living guitarist?. I really agree to his statement above, ?I can approach any kind of music and bring a unique point of view to it?. If you e.g. listen to ?Concert for George?, especially when he plays the special Ravi Shankar composition for George, you?ll see what I mean.
However, I still think it is pity that he used the same tone from his Stratocaster as he too often uses, I would have preferred a more mellow tone.
Unfortunately one tune is badly mixed, Clapton?s acoustic guitar is hardly audible, I guess the electric connection to the guitar was out of order. Funnily enough the sleeve text says ?Here, Clapton?s signature Martin acoustic underpins lead lines from Marcus Miller?s just-donned six-string bass.? The tune is ?In case you hadn?t noticed?. However, when I watched an excerpt from the some of the concerts on TV many years ago, which I have on a video, the mixing is fine.
I really like the mix of tunes, from a soft ?In sentimental mood? to a vivid ?Full House?. As I consider the live concert in 1997 as some of my most memorable concerts ever, I may overrate it somewhat. At the live concert the genuine zest for what they were doing was even more obvious. That passes a joy to the audience without any studied, sophisticated show.
So finally, after eight years delay, I really enjoy this DVD!
"Boring" ?? ...I beg to differ, amazon editorial
JESSE R. MC Glown | Enterprise, AL | 03/22/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD is a sensational value! Clapton "out of his element"? Hardly. While this forum may not necessarily be his forte, you wouldn't know it if you came in without a preconceived notion of who he is and what he represents...I think Eric holds his own extremely well with this stellar lineup. Everyone shines here. No blazing extended solos or gratuitous jams; just great musicians having a good time. This is, above all, a groove performance. Steve Gadd simply has to be one of the best "pocket" drummers of all time, and Joe Sample doesn't play the ivories so much as tickles them. David Sanborn hardly needs an introduction, and Marcus Miller on bass is just fun to watch. You could make the argument that this set would primarily appeal to musicians...but I'd defy anyone to not catch himself tapping along after a few of these tunes! Good show, especially at this price."