Drag City have announced the release of a live recording of the late John Renbourn at a Kyoto coffee house in 1978. Live In Kyoto 1978 is set for release on June 22nd featuring 13 tracks, available on digital, CD, vinyl and to stream. Drag City shared the following:
Given John Renbourn’s extensive catalog, the forthcoming Live in Kyoto 1978 might seem like an addition that only a true Renbourn-head could appreciate, but we are here to tell you that things are not what they seem to be. Or at least, that little factoid of fake isn’t! Regardless of whether or not you consider yourself a newbie or an old guard in the world of John Renbourn, Live in Kyoto 1978 showcases the talent and magnetism of a celebrated legend in the midst of his prime on a particularly hot night a long way from home.
John’s stunning rendition of the oft-covered English trad number, “The Cuckoo”, proves this point fantastically. His swift finger-picking sounds as if the guitar is playing itself and renders the packed crowd absolutely speechless – a singular effect of Renbourn’s gift. On this night (as on many others, we assume), the audience and performer were united as one. This live version of “The Cuckoo” could be one of Renbourn’s most enchanting performances ever! Now aren’t you glad there’s another John Renbourn live set available?
After hearing this we couldn’t help but agree:
There’s also a preview of Banks of the Sweet Primroses:
The recording was made by the late Satoro Fujii, whose archive of recordings was discovered posthumously and have begun to see release in recent years. Satoro captured the performance with pristine detail, allowing us to hear the fine detail of John’s fretwork and the warmth and delight in the room as he played.
Featuring notes from Masaki Batoh, who was one of the enchanted listeners in attendance, Live in Kyoto 1978 is a superb performance of John at the height of his powers, as well as a further demonstration that the work we do in this life will linger far beyond our lifespan. In the case of John Renbourn, this is a very good thing — long may he abide!
Live in Kyoto 1978 Tracklisting
3. I Know My Babe
4. So Early In The Spring
5. Kokomo Blues
6. The Cuckoo
7. Banks of the Sweet Primroses
8. John Barleycorn
9. Peacock Rag
10.The Earle of Salisbury
12. Lamentation For Owen Roe O’Neill/The Orphan/The English Dance
13.Medley: Gypsy Dance/Jew’s Dance
Also via streaming services: https://lnk.to/thecuckoo