Gram Parsons- Live Archive, Vol. 1

At the time of this incredible two-disc set’s release in 2007, the Gram Parsons rarities well had been wrung so dry that Amoeba Records co-founder Dave Pinz had to nose around another band’s vaults (the notoriously deep archives of the Grateful Dead) for these Flying Burrito Brothers tapes. The material–recorded by Bear Stanley, the Grateful Dead’s legendary live engineer–comprises two honky tonk-heavy sets from April 4, 1969 and April 6, 1969, when the Brothers opened for the Dead at San Francisco’s Avalon Ballroom.

While the Parsons-era Burritos were never the tightest live band, Archives, Vol.1 captures the one short era during which everyone in the band was together, getting along, and feeling great about the music they had discovered. You can hear it in the tracks: Chris Hillman’s delicate harmony on “Dark End of the Street,” Sneaky Pete Kleinow’s pedal steel pyrotechnics on Waylon Jennings’s “Sweet Mental Revenge,” and Parsons’s lovely tenor on a devastating version of “Hot Burrito #1.” This is the band’s finest hour; it didn’t last long, but thankfully for fans, it is thrillingly captured here.

Sin City (Live)
Thousand-Dollar Wedding (Home Demo)


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