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After 33 Years The Concert Video All Supertramp Fans Have Wanted To See!
on 21 August 2012
1) School 2) Bloody Well Right 3) The Logical Song 4) Goodbye Stranger 5) Breakfast In America 6) Hide In Your Shell 7) Asylum 8) Even In The Quietest Moments 9) Give A Little Bit 10) Dreamer 11) Rudy 12) Take The Long Way Home 13) Another Man's Woman 14) Child Of Vision 15) Fool's Overture 16) Two Of Us 17) Crime Of The Century ' Credits music 'From Now On'
I've been fortunate to see a couple of preview tracks and this Blu-ray promises to deliver what all Supertramp fans have wanted to see since the 1979 World tour. As Supertramp have said Crime Of The Century marked their creative pinnacle and Breakfast In America marked their commercial pinnacle. Filmed in the months after the release of Breakfast in America this concert captures the classic line-up with Roger Hodgson and Rick Davies bringing together their rich talents to form the nucleus of what many regard as one of the best ever British rock groups. Sadly, the early 1980s marked the eventual parting of the ways between Roger and the rest of the group and things were never the same for Supertramp after Hodgson's departure. Therefore this concert represents Supertramp at their best.
Although the Paris concert was filmed and recorded on 1st December 1979, it wasn't until July 2006 that the original master tapes of the album were rediscovered in the barn of the band's drummer Bob Siebenberg, along with video footage, not seen since the time of recording. The tapes were sent to Cups 'N Strings Studios in Santa Monica, California, for digital remastering. The tapes were initially in bad technical shape, but were successfully transferred. The video was sent to Peter Clifton, the creator of Led Zeppelin's 1973 concert film The Song Remains the Same, in New Zealand, for further editing. To read more about the discovery and restoration of the original film and audio master tape check out this link from 2006 when the restoration project started on this release:[...]
It is amazing to learn that "the condition of these tapes was appalling," according to Russel Pope, who co-produced the original project with Peter Henderson, the live engineer for the Paris concerts. "And the film footage has been sitting in the vaults since the day it was shot. Everything was stashed away and now it's all being reassembled... The 2-inch analog tape masters were a bio-hazard. They were covered with cow dung. We cleaned them up as best we could before putting them in the convection oven for baking, which produced some very penetrating odors. Luckily, we were able to salvage all of the tapes and transfer them successfully to Pro Tools" according to Bruce Maddocks, chief engineer at Cups N' Strings Studios.
Given the age of the film, this disc has great picture quality (restored from the original 16mm stock film) and an amazing 5.1 surround sound mix undertaken by Supertramp's Peter Henderson and the original sound engineer, Russel Pope, from the original multi-tracks and both the DVD and Blu-ray contain the soundtrack in both stereo and 5.1 surround sound (although the Blu-ray sound is uncompressed).
To quote Supertramp's former manager, Dave Margereson: "Finally released after all this time, the only footage of Supertramp at their very best. For me, as their old manager, watching the film was like coming home, any bitter-sweet memories from the intervening years swept away as I was transported back to that special band and those special concerts of 1979...Man, they really were that good!"
Note: Since posting this review Roger Hodgson has issued the following statement:
"Dear friends and fans,
Many of you have asked me about the status of the Paris DVD, so I wanted to write to you directly with the latest news. Unfortunately many laws, both legal and moral, were broken and the Paris DVD is now about to be put out using illegal and unethical methods. It is now in the hands of attorneys to resolve the legal dispute between the publishing company and the labels. I don't know which side will win, yet what I've learned in the music business, it's usually whichever attorneys have the most funding, not necessarily the ones who are in the right.
What Eagle Rock and John, Bob and Dougie (who are calling themselves "the Supertramp Partnership") are trying to do is to take away our songwriters rights. Legally, a label needs songwriters' and publisher's approval to put this type of product out and instead they are twisting some kind of legal loophole trying to say they don't need the required licenses. Songwriters are given legal rights and yet in the industry, they are getting ripped off in all kinds of ways and if this goes through, it is going to make things even more difficult for songwriters. What they are trying to do in claiming they can take away the songwriters and publishing rights could make it possible for other labels to do this to other songwriters in the future.
An attorney friend of mine who has been in the music industry 40 years who is also a publisher and has worked a lot with the Beatles catalog said he has never heard of anyone doing this in the music business - for a label to try to put out a DVD without the publishing company and songwriter's approval. This whole issue is much bigger than this one DVD. They are not only trying to take away rights from Rick and myself as songwriters, they are affecting the rights of songwriters all over the world with what they are trying to do.
Back in the spring and summer of 2011, I was working with the band and Eagle in a spirit of cooperation to release the Paris DVD. I spent many, many hours reviewing and giving artistic feedback and edits - and this was only at the very beginning of putting together the DVD. There were many things I compromised on, yet we told them I would give my songwriters approval and other rights that I have as a founding member of Supertramp as long as they incorporated the minimal things I asked for - and that they agreed to in writing and then I heard nothing else about it.
Last summer we were told that the DVD was shelved because of whatever quality issues Rick had with it, he did not approve of the release. And we were told Eagle would not release the DVD until they got approval from the publishing company, who represent the songwriters - so I thought the project was dead. Then a few weeks ago I found out the band guys had been working on the DVD all this time secretly behind my back, completely violating the spirit of cooperation I had been in with them up until then.
The only reason I even received a copy was because a fan let me know it was coming out and I asked Eagle to send me one, which I received just a few days ago - after it has already been shipped to distributors. I was shocked receiving the DVD completely manufactured and shrink wrapped before I'd even seen it! There is a whole montage of pictures, bonus materials and liner notes which I have never seen and have never been given the opportunity to comment on. They are putting out a product that is supposed to be representing all five of us, and it's not. It is only representing the three of them.
Bob, John and Dougie are representing themselves to Eagle as the `Supertramp partnership' and the contract is just between the three of them and Eagle. Whether you are a Rick fan or a Roger fan or both, I feel all fans would agree that it's not right for the three non-songwriters to control the Supertramp catalog, claiming I have no artistic voice, no input, no say at all in the creation of any Supertramp products, and yet they want to use my performances, my image and likeness and my songs.
To have received this DVD all packaged at the very last minute feels very out of integrity. They have not kept their agreements and have not honored my artistic, creative, technical or editorial inputs at all. For example, I wanted the songs to have correct writer's credit and for it to be delineated who wrote which songs. And instead they have gone so far as to completely bury who the songwriters are from the public. There is no credit being given to the songwriters or the publishers on the packaging or the film yet credit is being given to the merchandisers, the trucking company and who dressed up in a monkey suit. They don't list the songwriters at all, giving the illusion to the public that Supertramp wrote the songs, which is not true at all. And they know how important it has been to me as a songwriter to have my songs delineated. That is the only thing that I had to help me continue on with my career beyond Supertramp.
I know the three of them are going to say they are doing it for the fans, but that is not what is really going on. If they were really thinking about the fans, they would know that fans would want me to have input on the DVD. This isn't about the fans or about the music. This DVD is about a power play, it's about money, control, envy and underhanded music business tactics and I want nothing to do with it.
For me I truly was getting involved because so many of you have said you wanted a DVD from one of the concerts when I was with the band. And I hope you can understand that while I always wanted something like this out there, I cannot approve of a product that is created with this kind of manipulation and deceit because I believe that the energy and where you come from when you create something is very important.
The other reason I wanted to work on the DVD was to ensure that all five members could share their experiences from that tour, and I wanted to make sure it would be the best quality product possible. Unfortunately, I also cannot endorse the DVD because of its technical shortcomings, editorial inaccuracies and poor quality.
So I don't want any fans out there to be fooled, and for anyone who decides to buy the DVD, I wanted you to know this DVD was created out of very questionable legal maneuvering. The band that you see playing on the DVD has not existed for 30 years. Now it's all about business and the business part of music can be ruthless and backstabbing, just as any other business can be. That is one of the reasons I left LA and wanted to get out of the music business all those years ago. It's not how I want to live my life and it's not why I do music.
This is one of the reasons that I'm happier now than I ever have been touring the way I'm touring - not caught up in the music industry and all the ugly parts of the business. No record label owns me, no publisher owns me, no managers own me, no agents own me. I can stay true to myself and tour when I want, how I want. I can play to 3000 or 85,000 or anywhere in between - I'm ok not playing huge arenas anymore, it's about playing music to help make people happy, it doesn't matter what size the audience is.
I became a musician when I was 12. It's what I love to do and it's what I'm good at. And I will continue for as long as I can travelling around the world doing concerts. For me, one of the most important things as an artist is to play music for the art, for the magic that's possible with music to help lift people's spirits, help open their hearts to receive some healing and relief from all the troubles in this world.
I want to keep this Paris DVD issue separate from what I've been striving for all these years as an artist, my reasons for touring and playing music. I know many of you wanted to know my thoughts about the Paris DVD, so that is why I'm just sending this to the fan sites and you're welcome to leave any comments there on the sites.
For something more positive and uplifting, you can visit my Facebook or website guestbook and read some really amazing and touching stories from fans around the world. I so appreciate you all and am fully aware that if it wasn't for you loving the music or my songs I wouldn't be out here performing like this. Reading your stories and experiences from the shows is my inspiration.