Personnel: Al Kooper (vocals, keyboards); Mike Bloomfield, Carlos Santana (electric guitar); Roosevelt Gook (piano); John Kahn (bass); Skip Prokop (drums); Paul Simon (background vocals); Elvin Bishop.
Reissue producer: Bob Irwin.
Engineers include: Phil Macy, Fred Catero, Don Puluse.
Recorded live at Bill Graham's Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco, California on September 26-28, 1968. Includes liner notes by Mike Bloomfield, Al Kooper and Tom Wheeler.
This warts-and-all document of three shows recorded live at the old Fillmore West in September 1968 is a genuinely entertaining period piece. Designed to cash in on the success of the Bloomfield/Kooper/Stills live-in-the-studio SUPER SESSION which had been a surprise hit earlier that year, this nonetheless features only one tune from that album, the lengthy psychedelic jam "His Holy Modal Majesty."
The rest of the album is mostly traditional blues, with the notable exceptions of an inventive slow soul version of Paul Simon's "59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy)," an all-instrumental take on the Band's "The Weight," and a loose run through of Traffic's "Mr. Fantasy," which gives Kooper the opportunity to quote from the Beatles then-current hit "Hey Jude." The ensemble playing is occasionally a little sloppy, and some of the soloing is by modern standards a tad indulgent, but by and large this is highly creative music-making regardless of its era.