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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

James Brown Live At The Apollo

James Brown

1963

Wikipedia

James Brown Live At The Apollo

Rating

3.52

Votes

3760

Reviews

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4

This man will make your liver quiver! This man will make your bladder splatter! This man will make your knees freeze! If you will let’s all welcome the worlds Godfather of Soul, Soul Brother #1, JAMES BROWN!!! 1001 Albums To Hear Before You Die Day 9. I FEEL GOOD!! The album for today is Live At The Apollo (1962). Let me start by saying that it would be an impossible task to find another more influential artist in the history of modern music and dance. The best you can convince me of, is that he’s had some equals along the way, though few and far between. Now that we have that settled, I thought to myself, what’s my first memory of James Brown and his funky, soulful music? My first conscience memory is Living In America, the super smash, Grammy winning song that also just happened to be in the blockbuster film Rocky IV in 1986. Seeing The Godfather Of Funk giving an explosive performance in that movie moments before Apollo Creed would die in the ring against Ivan Drago changed my childhood. Apollo the boxer died in the movie. Live at the Apollo from Mr. Brown lives on forever. Mr. Please Please Please was only 29 when he recorded this live album at the historic Apollo Theater, a theater named after a Greek God that hosted many, many musical Gods over the years. Brown paid for this project out of his own pocket as his label didn’t think he held the same appeal to deliver a live recording that someone like Sam Cooke had at the time. In early ‘63 this album came out and it was so popular that it was hard to find a copy. Record stores bought cases upon cases in order to meet the demand, and if you found a copy, you had to share it with the whole household, and it was played so much that when you finally wore it out you had to re-up. Most of Mr. Dynamite’s biggest hits weren’t even recorded yet in 1962. Deciding to showcase his best repertoire at the time in a live setting was a genius move. Sure, James Brown sounded just as good on his records as he did in his live performances, but there is an electricity in hearing it live, even if it’s just on an 8-track in the 60’s or Spotify in 2021. You can almost feel the vibrations of this man working up a sweat. Just listen to the crowd go berserk. On the song Lost Someone you can hear the girls in the crowd literally falling apart at the seams. James Brown had the crowd in the palm of his hands and he knew it. His band, The Famous Flames, are “Clean as a silk suit” as quoted by Robert Christgau in Rolling Stone magazine. They never miss a beat, literally. This live album has my most favorite song from The Hardest Working Man In Show Business, Try Me. The passionate pleasing and soulfulness of that record, especially live, is worthy of being added to The Library Of Congress, which it has been. The first to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, James Brown sounds like a preacher at times. The way he uses the call and response technique has me in the shower damn near testifying! There’s no bad songs here. Make sure to check out Try Me, I’ll Go Crazy Night Train and Think. Also, make sure to listen to the girls losing their shit on Lost Someone. James Brown is The Godfather of not only Soul, but of Funk, Pop, and Hip Hop as well. He is the highest sampled artist in the world. His work has been borrowed a record smashing 7,413 times over the years. Listen to his song Funky Drummer and you’ll get the idea. James Brown is the Johnny Appleseed of music and I’m grateful for him.

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4

What a performer. I remember hearing how JB would be furious if he heard any member of the band slip out of time or play a bum note. It’s tight as all hell and funky as a washerman’s dishcloth. If the mix was a little better we could appreciate it in all glory, but the scratchy, tinny sound, backed by the screaming fans really takes me back to those sweaty, heady early 60’s club nights. Much fun.

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3

1) All music since James Brown is a failed attempt to match his rhythm. Discuss. 2) Please explain why more albums should have seprate tracks for instrumental bridges. 3) Somewhere in these 31 minutes is the formula for Al Green's music. Please represent this as a mathematical equation, showing your workings. 4) James Brown never released a particularly good studio album, but is still responsible for much of the best music of the 20th century. Did he know something we don't?

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2

He's a good singer and the instrumentals are decent but the live element of this is just much too irritating. Theres so much background sceaming and talking that I just cant enjoy it

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2

Probably blasphemy to some but I found this totally underwhelming. There wasn't even a fake walk off.

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5

Love the interaction with the audience! And this must be where Michael Jackson got the influence for his "Aowh!"

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5

Good live album. Crowd can get a bit in the way of listening sometimes though, lots of screaming etc.

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3

Pretty good, upbeat live album. Not too memorable though

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3

James Brown rules, but there is not a ton here.

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3

What a concert to attend.Apparently it was a tough ticket to get. The band is very tight. Not sure if you watched any of the videos but there were a lot of band members to keep tight. He had quite the high pitch screams but the low quality recording didn't  do them justice. I thought by the late sixties live recordings were better quality. Might have scored higher if recording quality was better.

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3

I know who James Brown is, of course, but I don't think I had heard any of the songs from this album. I'm curious as to where this performance fits within context of Brown's career as a whole. I was surprised how short some of the tracks were, especially for a live performance. "Lost Someone" is the longest track, and has some of the back and forth between Brown and the audience that you might expect with a live performance. This album is fine, but I'm not sure if I'd listen to it again. 3 stars

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3

Dynamic, high energy R&B/Soul performance

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3

Live at the Apollo by James Brown (1963) This recording from a concert at New York City’s Apollo Theater on October 24, 1962 is a quaint look back at a moment in the career of the great R&B pioneer, James Brown. One gets a clear sense of the effect he had on an audience of 1,500, even if his own talents were imperfectly preserved (see below). The venue was the center of the urban black middle class universe at the time. The Apollo, in Harlem, was owned by Sidney Cohen and managed by Morris Sussman, catering to the well dressed and well coiffed ladies and gents who made their way to 253 West 125th Street. It sounds like they had a good (and raucous) time. The Beatles did not invent mania. The music is passionate, showy, exhilarating, and lush. James Brown’s blues voice is surpassed only by Janis Joplin’s, with its energetic and lusty flourishes and starkly contrasting smoothness, all woven together. The backing instrumental and vocal ensemble is generous and disciplined (even if the brass and reeds are not entirely in tune with one another). Among the weaknesses of the original 1963 album, one should note the faulty mix (shunting both lead and backing vocals into the right channel, and bass in the left with the gain too high), and the inconsistent vocal mic direction. The result is that James Brown’s delicious voice is frequently subdued to the point of concealment. These problems were somewhat repaired in the 1990 and 2004 reissues, but with a commensurate loss in fidelity. Also, in the live setting, the female screams (even coached along in the second half of “Lost Someone”) obliterate some of Brown’s most delicate stylings. And in slow, subdued sections (e.g., “I Found Someone”), the murmur of conversation is distracting, if not disrespectful. Plus, Brown seems to lose the audience on “Night Train”, especially at the dud ending of this final track—worst ending to a concert set I’ve ever heard. The serious listener should stick to the studio recordings, but there’s entertainment enough here to sustain interest for 32 minutes. 3/5

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2

I want to like it, but it's so hard to enjoy a live album.

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5

An absolute belter! To think the label didn't want to release it!!!

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5

FINALLY!! The HARDEST working man in show business at his best.

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5

Love his music.

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5

Shit that's good. The faster version of I got you is truly a masterpiece. James' browns voice is also one of the greats

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5

I really miss live music

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5

Amazing... a lot more love songs than I expected.

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5

Big influencer on all music that followed.

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5

that was one intense performance - he just never stopped that whole way through. amazing, and an awesome album as well.

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5

Emoji Monday: 🎵🤴🏿🕺🏿🎷🗣🎺😎🎶

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5

5 all day

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5

An excellent example of what a live album can accomplish. Joyful and uplifting

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5

Decent just not my thing

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5

Awesome, set the tone of the morning upbeatly

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5

Umm wow. Knew I got down with JBrown. Never this much though.

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5

Genial, directo mítico. Soul y funk con Brown dándolo todo. Imprescindible.

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5

Can't deny this record it's due. Live albums tend to be a showcase for an artist's greatest hits, but can get bogged down in rough performances or poor sound quality. But this 1962 recording of James Brown at the Apollo Theatre transports you there. From the M.C.'s introduction to the tight band to Brown's captivating performance, this recording is better than any greatest hits album, because it's fresh and keeps you on the edge of your seat. Fav Tracks: Lost Someone, Try Me and I Don't Mind Rating 4.5/5

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5

Amazing!!!

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5

Yeah man, this is good shit. But only when you're already in a good mood. Which I typically am not. 5 stars though, what a legend.

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5

Fire. The Famous Flames are on another planet this whole album. Tight, grooving, and fierce as hell. And James Brown is running the whole show like he might never do another. Every song has funk, soul, emotion, charisma, and raw energy. I imagine it’s only a 30 minute set because they’re all out of gas by the end.

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5

Brilliant album, love those old crowd noises going wild for JB

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5

3

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5

Neat

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5

Amazing. An incredible performer at the top of his game. Only problem is that it is too short.

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5

An album that just oozes out "60s vibes". Makes you regret the fact that you were born in the late 90s and you will never experience this era ever again in such a way as back then.

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5

Rawer than the later records

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5

Really gives a feel for what it might have been like to see JB live. And that intro! Only knock is that the recording quality (at least the one I listened to on Spotify) is pretty bad.

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5

A great musician father of the soul.

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5

Awesome. Sexy and energic.

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5

good fun

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5

Un disc a ser degustat tot d'una, com una ràfaga huracanada de funk, r&b, soul amb un James Brown cantant com un cavall desbocat i la banda seguint-li tots a una fent de tot plegat una estona de pura màgia. Mai es fa pesat, sempre es manté fresc, per més anys, décades que passin

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5

STunning

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5

A classic experience

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5

King shit

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5

Damn

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5

Absolute classic.

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5

classic

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5

Wow. I mean, what can I say? It's James Brown we're talking about here, one of the hardest working entertainers we've ever seen.

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5

The quality of this recording of a live performance puts a massive swath of studio albums to shame. Sure, we lose Mr. Brown a bit while he's working the crowd, but that's the price you pay to work the instrument that is the audience; and it's worth it in the long run, as the crowd swells and swoons along with the tracks. Literally every song is winner. I couldn't help but move my feet and wiggle in my seat as I listened along to tracks like "Think", "Night Train" and even the various instrumental brides. When things slowed down on "Try Me" and "I Don't Mind" I was still swaying along and hanging on every verse. This album provides a glimpse into the undeniable fact that James Brown (and his band) had mastered the art of the stage show, and that's even without being able to see his expressions and footwork. I wish I had had the chance to see them myself. That chance has passed. But I'm glad to have albums like this, so I can at least glimpse into the experience and carry the energy on in my heart.

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5

Yes. All day long. Hit me!

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5

Brown was a tremendous performer, had a great back up band and interacted really well with the audience. Obviously what's missing here is the visual aspect, as seeing James Brown go nuts on stage must have an awesome sight. I wonder how many parties have been graced by this fab LP?!

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5

super nice

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5

!!!!!!!

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5

Wow! It must have been something to see James Brown Live at the Apollo in 1962! I had expected an energetic performance, and that’s what I got. Crazy to think this was happening in a year where the top song of the year was a slow clarinet instrumental. Totally enjoyed this. The interplay with the audience was great. What a recording!

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5

Great fun!

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5

5.0 + It's incredible to hear the hardest working band arguably at their prime. They honed their stage performance to a non-stop onslaught of scream-inducing licks, shrieks and moans, MC'ed by arguably the greatest frontman in history. I'd say their schtick sounds too polished but then I hear James Browns' vocals on "Love Someone" - the way he digs to the bottom of his soul to convey that feeling of heartbreak, that's not a sound that can be manufactured.

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5

I'm normally not a huge fan of live albums but I'll have to make an exception for this. The energy is electric, with a feedback loop between JB and the crowd. I find it completely enthralling.

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5

This album flew by, I actually wish it was longer. It was fun to hear the audience's participation, and even more fun to hear how tight the live band is. It sounds legendary.

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5

one of the greatest live albums, the hardest working man in showbusiness giving us his all

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5

Favorite Track - I'll Go Crazy Where I was - Office How I listened - Amazon music on BT Speaker Listen Again? - Very Likely

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5

Sensational.

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5

I don't always love James Brown, but this is him at his absolute best. I would imagine this is only a portion of the entire show, but he packs a ton into 32 minutes on this record.

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5

Talk about tearing the roof off the house. 'nuff said.

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5

Love James Brown, great live performance

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5

Hot! In the Hot Tub!

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5

Wow. This is an absolutely stunning live album. James Brown brings it all. The power, intensity and emotion here just rock me to my core. The track listing is basically useless, because this whole thing is the event, not to be itemized. The screams of feedback from the frenzied crowd are an essential part of the mix here, basically acting as an instrument. I feel that this would be impossible to replicate now, truly a relic of a different era. My only complaint is that it's not longer, but perfection is fleeting, so we must accept the rare moments when it does arise. Fav Tracks: The whole damn thing

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4

More soulful r’n’b than some of James’ more famous work. Short and sweet!

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4

great.

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4

Rhythm & Blues

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4

I really enjoyed the album but I felt like some of the songs dragged on a bit.

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4

Amazing energy and talent!

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4

This was the first body of work by James Brown that I had the pleasure of listening to, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. the sound of the live crowd boosted the already electrified atmosphere that burst forward through James Browns stellar voice.

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4

s ok

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4

James Brown certainly lives up to his name as the Godfather of Soul. I'm not usually a big fan of live albums, but this is an excellent recording, and the performances are incredible. James Brown's vocals are outstanding, and the band are incredibly tight and all sound fantastic. Crowd noises didn't even annoy me as much as they usually do, as they punctuate the recording nicely and almost behave as another instrument in the mix.

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4

The band was tight, listening to this live makes me wish I could have seen it.

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4

1. Chill intro, I like the fact that it is pretty much a live thing, really immersive. 2. Really cool guitar work, instrumentation and harmonized voices are really cool. The use of the horns was really cool to accentuate the beats. 3. Reminds me of Earth Angel, really cool, slow song. 4. Hectic, cool transition. 5. Nice kind of jam song. Muted guitar technique is cool. 6. The high energy and momentum is nice. 7. The bass tone and bassline is really cool, as well as the slowness of the song and background voices. 8. Cool bridge. 9. Really nice, slow song. The horn accents are really cool, and the laid back instrumental is relaxing. OOOWW 10. Really amazing instrumental. Love it a lot. Bassline is cool. The song at the end with the rhodes and guitar was awesome. 11. One of the best tracks. The rhodes and the guitar tone make this song amazing. Love it so much. Favorite track.

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4

Good call-response structure in the songs. Live recording captures the energy and devotion of the fans. Good toe-tapping music to pickup your mood and pace.

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4

I liked the songs a bit bit slow for my tastes. It was close to jazz but not quite there. Some songs have more of a groove to them then others.

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4

Very chill and relaxing

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4

Heerlijke soul? Iig goeie shit

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4

I like 60s music, so I liked this one pretty well. I liked BB King better, but this one was good.

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4

One of the greatest live albums of all time. Slightly behind Johnny Cash Live at Fulsom Prison.

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4

Definition of a classic, great party album

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4

I liked it

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4

I thought this was a great live album to listen to. The concert looked fun. Absolute tunez in there too

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4

awesome live album. hardest working man in show biz

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4

3.5 - I dunno man, I am normally into Jazz but this one feels like it got in because 'James Brown!'. The crowd has to be in it. Go take a look at Sam Cooke - Live At The Harlem Square Club and listen to that crowd. Maybe just not in the mood.

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4

Surprisingly pleasing! I usually do not like live albums and I have never been into James Brown, but I really enjoyed listening to this album. Catchy!

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4

Excellent. Very nice.

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4

great album and love the feel. the original ll cool j (ladies love cool james brown). only problem was it was too short...

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4

SHEEEEEEEEEEESH

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4

Amazing energy. Can feel stage presence in recording.

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4

Enjoyable. Don't want to feel too stingy so will give it a 4 for 'Lost Someone' alone.

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4

Albums like this make me understand the appeal of live albums

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4

Wardle will probably give it 2 stars because he hates everything.

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4

Excellent, an amazing snapshot of James Brown at his first peak. The band is excellent and the grooves are undeniable.

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4

Haiku Tuesday: ### James Brown ain’t no clown #### Hardest worker in the biz ### Energy through cool. ###

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4

man, I really dug this album. I am sucker for Live stuff and hearing a legend like JB was pretty cool. I listened to it probably five times this weekend. I give it four eddie murphy hot tubs!

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4

Brilliant!

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4

Nothing against some awesome tunes not an everyday listen for me though

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4

Better than expected. Will keep in mental rotation.

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4

I wonder what this sounded like to folks at the time. I imagine it was very bold and somewhat new sounding. I enjoyed it.

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4

About as good a live album as you can get with an incredible performer and band. It transports you to front row of The Apollo for one of the best live sets ever recorded. And yet, I still can't really bring myself to give this kind of recording a perfect grade. For me, a live album just lives in a different category than the others we're listening to and rating. So on its own terms, its a five, but in the context of this list, I'm going with a four. Favourite songs: "Lost Someone", "I'll Go Crazy"

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4

I love the audience. The shouts from the audience fill the album with life combined with James Brown's excellent singing. He's the reason why we've got artists like Bruno Mars today.

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4

Dope

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4

Love the energy here =]

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4

A fun, educating listen

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4

I’m usually not into live albums but I was completely won over by this one. James Brown is just too good a performer and hearing the reaction of the crowd just enhances the overall experience so much. It’s also crazy how good this sounds for a live recording from 1962!

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4

Rating: 7/10 Best songs: I’ll go crazy, Try me, I don’t mind

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4

4/5 would listen to again

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4

Great music! Since it was live there was a lot of screaming from the audience amazing performance

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4

Hi Jojo! It's Shaun. How ya doin?

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4

Unbelievable recording quality for the era. Lots of excellent JB performances, but not the "Greatest Hits" most people are familiar with. The backup band is rock solid.

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4

An excellent amount of screaming

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4

Very funky Livealbum. James Brown's screams are simply legendary and the way he handles the audience! (7/10) Favorite Tracks: Try Me, Lost Someone

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4

The playing on this is nuts.

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4

A solid live performance. It would have been pretty wild to see Mr. Brown work a crowd at the peak of his career.

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4

Oh, this was really refreshing to hear. It's exhibit A in why musicians keep making live albums. Live albums are the attempt to capture in a bottle the energy of the artist in front of an audience, capture that moment in time. And this album absolutely crackles with the energy of James Brown's live performance at the Apollo. You can almost imagine his moves when the girls start screaming. Brown is in fine voice and the band is flawless. Recorded fairly early in Brown's career, the song selection is a nice mix of early hits. Almost every song here was a top 10 R&B hit, although some may have been overshadowed by the songs that were to come. It's a beautiful little snapshot of that moment in time, featuring one of music's most dynamic performers on the cusp of superstardom, with his audience at one of the hottest venues in the world. Fave songs: I'll Go Crazy, Lost Someone, Think

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4

Very good.

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4

I have not connected much with James Brown's music in the past. It always felt so dated. Having listened to a lot more swing music these past years, I feel like I'm listening to this in a slightly new light. I'm enjoying the more up-beat numbers - the slower tracks don't do much for me. Enjoyed the percussion, enjoyed the brass hits, enjoyed the backup singers. Still don't understand James' singing style. Nevertheless incredible for a live performance.

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4

Classic

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4

Godfather of soul for a reason!

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4

Great live show, almost too short!

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4

Этот альбом я послушал, когда родился мой первый сын

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4

An amazing catchy souls album. James voice sounds amazing and the transition to try me is insane. You just feel that moment on record

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4

It sounded exactly like what you would expect! It was a good time, but I didn't recognize any of the songs.

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4

I'm not a fan of Live albums but this one is great!

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4

So many iconic James Brown-isms in this! It was cool to hear the crowd screaming (the girls!) because he was a sex symbol. So many of the iconic James Brown songs were still to come—this was 1962–but his demeanor and voice is all there. The band and the horns! I could practically see him twirling onstage when I was listening to it.

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4

I never thought I'd say this on the 1,001 albums list, but this album is TOO SHORT! Wow, can't believe I said it. But it's true. This album is like a flash in the pan of high octane energy. Just as you're really getting into the groove, it's over!

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4

I feel good

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4

Short and sweet live album. Honestly wish there was a little more. 8/10

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4

7/10. Nothing super special, but was fun to listen to, and it is always nice to get a short and sweet album in this challenge.

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4

Great live performance w classic songs, James Brown is super charismatic. I wish the recording quality was better tho 8/10

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4

Dynamic live performance by a generational talent. The energy was palpable through the audio as he worked the audience like few can. I can only imagine his moves were equally electric.

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4

Obviously iconic. Really enjoyed the way he interacted with the crowd and the audio quality all things considered.

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4

Hella good funk, aged well, may listen again in the future

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4

I prefer both of the Sam Cooke live albums that were released around the same time (both of which are all-time, slam-dunk 5's). Make no mistake, this is a great live album. It's an incredible time capsule that literally takes the listener to the Apollo in 1963, where you hear some female fans shriek like those in Ed Sullivan's audience when The Beatles performed. For my money, Sam Cooke took the Hardest Working Man In Show Business to school as far as live albums are concerned. Bonus points for making me daydream about Eddie Murphy's "Too hot for the hot tub" Saturday Night Live sketch.

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4

Short, sharp bursts of funk. I'm generally not a fan of live albums, but this one's worth a listen just to hear the sheer amount of fervour Brown generated.

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4

I think we are lucky indeed to have this concert on a record. The songs don't matter so much; Instead, the runtime captures the three-part interplay of Brown, his band, and his audience. Each strand is unique, each party pushes and pulls and contributes to some thing. That thing existed in space in 1962 and was immortalized in crackly tape. I haven't listened to the remaster. It might make me think better of the album, or worse. But the artifact is important to me, and the crackles don't make it hard to listen to.

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4

Good, but no better. Live album was interesting, and loved the introduction he was given. Didn't know many of the songs, but all pretty catchy. Will come back to when I'm not driving, so I can listen more fully

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4

It was a pretty darn good album. Gave that cool old school jazz, soul wibe. 4/5, just because, I don't really like live recordings.

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4

What a live album - the screaming fans (especially well timed in Lost Someone), the influence it's had on other artists and albums, and the energy coming from the band and Brown makes this album a 5 star. It's too bad I'm not a big fan of funk - which pushes my personal rating down to 4. I appreciate the historical significance and love how it captures the screaming crowds and the energy of a live show ; but I probably wouldn't listen to it over and over again.

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4

Easy to see why he’s so revered, his crowd work was phenomenal and the tone of his voice comes across crystal-clear despite it being a live album.

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4

Was alright, outside my usual listening but enjoyable for working to

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4

An all round very smooth album. Less high-octane than I expect from James Brown, much more soulful than funk. May have been earlier in his career? Goods: I'll go Crazy, Lost Someone.

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4

This'll probably comes as a bit of a surprise to you guys, but I'm not a recording engineer. I know, I know. I'm as surprised as you are. But as a non-engineer, I have to imagine that capturing the energy of an artist on record is not nearly as easy as just setting up a mic and pressing the record button. If it were, then pretty much every metal band I've seen live would have much, much better sounding albums. And live albums - oh God, those are the worst! They very rarely have any energy at all! Not. This. One. Not James Brown. The man exudes energy. You can see this performance as much as you can hear it, and that's crazy to me. So yeah, big thumbs up. I could listen to him just sing the names of cities for about thirty-six hours, no exaggeration. Cover the globe, James. I'm here for you. Also, kind of cool how close the artwork of this is to the Sarah Vaughn record. I guess it makes sense, given they're both live recordings. Anyway, I'm all caught up on my Thanksgiving listening. I liked the Vaughn record, but there's only one person who should be singing "Just a Gigolo" and his name is Diamond David Lee Roth. Three stars. Sugarcubes? Loved it. Bjork's energy is well on display here, too. What a wonderful weird record. At times, poppy and happy alternative-y, at other times kind of oddly menacing with some German sounding dude saying oddly menacing German things. "Fucking in Rhythm and Sorrow" might be the best song title we've come across yet on this list. Four stars.

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4

A great live album, nothing more nor less than that. Of course, this is not at all a bad thing to be. The standout track is the 11-minute Lost Someone, which not only manages to predict several soul developments of the 60s (it has shades of Papa Was a Rolling Stone), but anticipates funk and even elements of hip-hop. The minor tracks are, well, minor, but in no way sound unpleasant. In fact, the whole album is a treat.

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4

I liked it, not huge fan of live albums like

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4

🐞 vivid sound. The 10 minute freeview of an album

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4

Totally incredible voice and fun sounding performance. 7/10.

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4

Love the energy!

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4

A different side of JB. - before the funk but clearly a star.

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4

4/5 Other than the popularity of the name and his voice I’m not very familiar with James Brown. I’ve read that Brown was much more enjoyable live and I agree that there is a lot of life and excitement due to the crowd and his interactions with them, especially on tracks like “I’ll Go Crazy” and “Lost Someone”. For how old the album is the recording quality is very good other than a few minor blips. Musically the band is on point the whole time and length of the album is just right, keeping the high energy going without it getting tiring to listen too. Fav Songs: I’ll go Crazy, I Don’t Mind, Lost Someone

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4

nice! I loved it!!!

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4

An absolutely stellar performance by some extremely talented musicians. James Brown obviously keeps the energy going, and there is never a dull moment. I don't really get the point of the interludes, but they're short and don't really affect the flow of the album. Favorite Tracks: "I'll Go Crazy", "Try Me", "I Don't Mind", "Medley: Please Please Please / You've Got The Power / I Found Someone", "Night Train"

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4

Prefs: I'll Go Crazy, Think, I Don't Mind, Medley, Night Train Moins pref: Try Me

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4

Jazz is nice! Doet me een beetje denken aan de muzikale opvoeding met ons Wiesje. Lekker meezingen. Kort album, goed voor mijn korte aandachtspanne.

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4

Pretty fun stuff that goes by quick

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4

This was some James Brown with which I was not familiar, but clearly the audience was. What a fun listen. Some upbeat to dance to…and I imagine that JB did…and some slower tunes to sway and swoon to. I think I would have enjoyed the show.

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4

How much fun to listen to a live concert by James Brown from 1962! No one can scream like James Brown. Hearing the audience screaming and shouting really made this an exhilarating experience. There was a lot of screaming overall. The structure of this album was surprising to me. An almost two minute introduction with a long list of hit songs. Five songs of about two minutes each. Some short jazzy interludes. A six-minute medley of eight of his hits. And in the middle of it, an 11 minute tantric opus that apparentely was spread over two sides of the LP. Ow! Aaaaaaaaugh! It seemed that 31 minutes would be short for an album, but I was worn out at the end.

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4

Sadly, I’ll never get to experience seeing James Brown in his prime. Fortunately we have this gem though. Great capture of the energy and excitement. My only complaint is that it’s too short! 4 stars.

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4

I mean, it's James Brown. So of course it's gonna be good. But I have to say, it wasn't quite as good as I expected. It deserves to be on this list but it was not nearly as enjoyable for me as Sarah Vaughan or Sam Cooke. Obviously he's a great singer, great dancer, and in that sense a great performer. But the crowd interaction was a bit lackluster compared to many live albums imo. Also there's the fact that as a person, James Brown was an absolute total flaming bag of shit. He literally pushed girlfriends down flights of stairs or beat them up. So although I know he's a great artist it's pretty hard to take his work and completely remove it from that context. But hey, James Brown is a music legend so people will probably overlook it more than they should. Chris Brown has far less talent and people ignored and didn't care about that, too. Fave track: Try Me. Four stars for the album, but would give James Brown zero stars as a human being if I could.

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4

Good vibes! Easy to listen to, sit back and enjoy

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4

Hell yeah. Röstar mycket på viben jag fick av att lyssna på James brown hela dagen

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4

I really like how you can hear how James Brown is interacting with the audience. You can feel the energy.

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4

Hardest working man in show business wins again. Great album with lots of fun and energy

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4

First time of listening to this album, I was much more aware of his late 60's/70's output, but it is amazing that in 1962, when the Beatles were just starting their Mop-Toppery that James had an audience screaming at the Apollo and was already known as the most hardworking man in showbusiness. A great live album that highlights the skill and artistry of both the band & the Famous Flames and the sheer soul of JB's musical ability as both an artist and an arranger. My favourites on the album are "Lost Someone" a great expression of lost love (or is it lust!), "Think" and the "Please, Please, Please" Medley. A good pick for this list I think.

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4

Thought it would have more energy

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4

Very cool album. The energy in the room is palpable. I'm not a huge fan of JBs music / songs but a couple did resonate with and the experience of attending a JB show is definitely not lost on me and comes through vividly on this album. 4 🌟

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4

I don't know if I've ever listened to this artist but the swelling of bass in the intro track has me excited to listen to this. kinda has some surfer dude vibes on I'll Go Crazy. Try me! it being a live recording I'm not sure when the next song starts, if it wasn't for the crowd going crazy. while I feel put of the loop, the crowds excitement makes me more than happy to hear his music. like dang what have I been missing? I find myself tapping my foot, while waiting to start my job. I like Think! How it starts the instruments lead hard and he scats to Chase them. very fun. I wish I could scat and woman go crazy. I don't mind, might have me favorite lead into the song. this dude has the crowd in the palm of his hand it's amazing. just finished Please Please Please. good album! I had started my work about halfway through so my notes stopped there but it was a cool listen. jazzy and strong vocal I would listen again.

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4

Makes 33 minutes feel like two. It's almost frantic in its energy. I love it. He throws out 10 second versions of his biggest hits (at the time) the band is awesomely tight. Just wow, really.

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4

Pretty good. Usually I'm not a live music enthusiast but this album barely felt live to me. Performance was stellar and I didn't really hear the audience disturb the recording so that's also a big plus.

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4

Enjoyed it, would listen again. Not as crazy/flamboyant as living in America.

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4

4.5

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4

Legendary voice and performer. You can feel the electric performance from the speakers.

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4

Fun album, moves quickly, nice flow.

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4

Very good but in serious need a a remaster. The parts were too far panned in 1 direction or the other so listening in AirPods was a pain. But James brown is an undeniable talent with a great voice and I think this show would have been incredible to watch in person. If we had half stars it would get a 3.5.

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4

Early James Brown is the best James Brown! A stellar selection of songs and performance.

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4

4/5

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4

je retire ce que j'ai dit sur les live👍

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4

Love James Brown a great live album. But I did find the crowd noise a little annoying so loses a star for that.

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4

Pero qué gran fiesta es esta. En el medley de Please, please, please los gritos son increíbles

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3

He's got better

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3

Sounds like a fun concert. James leans a little more towards Sam Cooke than I expected him to. He really knows how to work a crowd. The medleys are great. Favorite tracks: "I'll Go Crazy", "Please Please Please"

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3

Funky 3,5

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3

Great album even if not my gendre

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3

Great voice live, lots of energy. Not really my scene for the whole album.

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3

kann man machen... bisschen kurz

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3

3.4

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3

Some bangers but too much breaking it down, taking it to the bridge and shouting. Maybe cause it was a live album.

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3

Lovely to hear James sing.

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3

The girls screaming throughout are incredibly annoying but otherwise an awesome live album (which I normally dislike).

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3

it wasnt exactly my favorite style of music. but the guy can definitely play music well

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3

Fun, quick, easy

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3

I didn’t do this cause I’d already seen this one, it was pretty good. Micheal McIntyre introduced him and I think Jack Dee did a set after!

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3

This was great. Never listened to this album before. Incredible live performance.

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3

Great Horns. Favorite Tracks: Night Train

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3

It’s powerful and clearly showing his potential but I’m too far from that era to experience it properly.

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3

Jazzy feeling and love a good live album. Full of soul and energy. Props to the double bassist, really fills the band out Vocals drop in and out a couple of times but not too noticeable. 3/5

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3

Short, fun, soul & blues. Lots of screaming women.

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3

Great primal funk, still with lots of R&B roots and an emphasis on the "B(lues)" part of it.

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3

I love the opening fanfare. I want an opening fanfare at all times please. I’m not usually a huge fan of live albums, too much screaming from the audience and it doesn’t always flow as well as it would in person. James Brown is clearly playing to the audience and they are eating it up. This is fun, but I’d rather listen to a studio album from James Brown.

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3

It is not a bad concert, although it is not my style

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3

Although this sounds good on speakers, maaan it must have been something to see JB's energy live on stage. I bet this concert was legendary

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3

Good but not something id nornally listen to

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3

Great but so short :(

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3

Nice, quick entertaining listen. It's James Brown innit?

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3

For live albums to work they have to be great performances. Johnny Cash at Folsom Prison, Elvis comeback special no.1440, something like that. This is decent without me really ever paying close attention. I also for some reason felt like James Brown had a bit of Jimmy Saville about him. Everything about this album is good without being great. The Voice, The tunes, the music. All good. The crowd noise sounds like they put it on afterwards. I'm not having it people screamed and clapped like that. Maybe this gets a 3 as i feel bad about calling him a nonce and "I Don't Mind" is a magnificent song!

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3

Was good but nothing special, was expecting more. The fact it was live added to it, I miss gigs.

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3

I like James Brown but I listened to this in the morning and I think I just wasn't in the right mood

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3

Powerful and fun

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3

Always enjoy the godfather of soul, but the recording made it hard to hear him. Though listening to the audience at the Apollo Theater was fun. I would have had to be there.

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3

My dad loves James Brown so I listened to him quite a bit growing up. This album is good not great especially compared to what I know it could be

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3

I know TGFOS’s main hits and a little of his lesser known stuff, but this was a good intro to his soul years, and live nonetheless. Enjoyed this one, but wasn’t a massive fan. Might revisit. Might not.

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3

Definitely thought (and hoped) this would be more rowdy. Voice is incredible though. I don't Mind is the highlight for me. Too much screaming.

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3

‘Twas a fine album, but I probably won’t listen again too much. Low 3 from moi

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3

Classic and identifiable James Brown. Alright but all the tracks start to sound the same after a while. ***

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3

It was a strange inclusion on this list in my opinion. Maybe if I listen to more James Brown music then revisit it I will appreciate it more but it didn’t do a whole lot for me. Light 6/10

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3

I wasn't as mad about it as the women in the crowd, still good though. Loads of energy from James Brown as expected.

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3

Didn’t really hold my attention

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3

good performance, a bit before what I think of as James Brown primetime

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3

Like the Fela album, I love JB but this isn't great. It's fine though, and the band is super tight. I just think his later stuff is so much better.

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3

Live albums are always a bit weird for me. But a vibe. Good for a studying.

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3

Es James Brown, pero odio los discos en directo.

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3

I get why this is such an important record but honestly the live recording makes it a little hard for me to fully get into.

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3

Flows seamlessly. You can hear what a consummate entertainer your man was. I was of course privileged enough to see him live, supporting the Chilli Peppers(!) And oh! Could he get a crowd on up. This really rolls by, and I feel bad giving it the same grade as Black Sabbath, but hopefully by now we’re all aware I made an error in that grade that I'm paying for now.

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3

Meh, pretty boring. Nothing special for now, but I get the significance it had

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3

1962 GOT DAMN. Our boy JB improved throughout the 60s, but his rise to fame wasn't a fluke.

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3

Likes: I’ll Go Crazy Lost Someone Medley:Please Please Please/You’ve Got the Power/... Night Train Dislikes: Try Me I Don’t Mind

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3

Sounds great but very samey

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3

Good stuff, makes me want to listen to more James brown, but not this album

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3

Pretty good, but not quite as great as some of his later stuff.

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3

Well that was fun. That show must have been hott! Good album I will listen again soon. 3 🌟

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3

Here's the thing. I like James Brown typically, but I really don't like live albums. They tend to be worse quality musically than studio, as you'd expect. As a result, this is not the best album, even though it has alright music.

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3

First time listening to a full James Brown album. Leaning a little more on the doo-wop era than I would have hoped. Not a bad thing, just not my choice of genre in the grand scheme of things. Still so much talent on display here.

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3

Big James Brown fan but this album really isn't that good. "Lost Someone" was pretty cool though.

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3

Fun little piece of history but not something I'd go back and listen to

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3

Not bad. Probably wouldn’t put it on, but wouldn’t necessarily turn it off either.

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3

Short and sweet. Nice one.

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3

A preview of his later glory, but doesn’t stand alone as something I’d play again and again.

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3

Fun

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3

Uncomplicated fun. James Brown is great to listen to, although this particular selection of songs isn't necessarily my favourite - being recorded in 1962 it has a huge 50s flair/sound to it and I'm not a big fan of that era (e.g. doowop) but nevertheless it's a highly enjoyable collection especially (mostly?) because it's live. And that intro is fantastic :) 6/10 3 stars - will never be a keeper for me but would reach for this again in the right setting.

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3

it was okay, i like his voice but it wasn’t that fun to listen to 🤷‍♀️🤷‍♀️

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3

Great voice, good songs I guess my problem is that they all sound like standards, and like I've heard them 100 times before, even when I haven't.

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3

Pretty good stuff. 0RS

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3

To much crowd noises.

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3

September 30, 2021 This was fine but kind of long and rambly. Not bad, just not for me.

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3

I like James Brown, but never a fan of live albums

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3

There's some balancing issues. None of my favourite tracks were on it. And at 30 minutes, it felt like it should have packed more of a punch than it did... But it's still James Brown. Performance and presence out the hole

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3

Decent early more blue-sy. 3.5/5

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3

It's hard to pick against James Brown, but the mix was awful and so was all the screaming. This was not the experience I was hoping it would be. Best track: the medley

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3

The hardest working man in show business shows exactly why he is that. Old school soul and R&B doing it right. The crowd is as much as an instrument in this as well. Best Tracks: I'll Go Crazy; Medley; Night Train

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3

Too fast...

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3

Just what it says.. ya need to see him tho

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3

I can feel the funk. Fart och fläkt hela halvtimmen i detta livealbum! Gillart. Love Someone är albumets egentliga höjdpunkt, en 10 minuter lång, briljant sånguppvisning. Men jag kan ändå inte bortse från den lite lugnare, nedtonade I Don't Mind, som är otroligt vacker i sin enkelhet. Bästa låt: I Don't Mind. Även om alla bör lyssna på Lost Someone minst en handfull gånger i livet.

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3

Good

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3

Very energetic, must have been amazing to be there. I'm not a big fan of live recordings in general, but I can see how this one might be an exception (were it not for all the screaming).

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3

Quite nice little album. Not sure if I'd listen again though

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3

Soul med masser af energi, live

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3

I början visade albumet på höga strukturella kvaliteter. Genom att hålla låtarna koncisa och utvecklande lyckades musiken. Detta gjorde de inledande låtarna minnesvärda men efter albumets gång tappades den kärnfulla egenskapen men också den medryckande känslan. De senare låtarna var inte alls lika sammanhållande och gav en känsla av ett obearbetat resultat. Samtidigt är sångarens vackra raspiga röst perfekt för den svängiga stil som albumet konstruerar.

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3

Some songs are bit to short and poppy. A good energy throughout with a good funky soul sound.

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3

Good album despite being live.

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3

Very funky, very disco, much shouting

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3

6/10

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3

I'm noticing a pattern with a lot of these albums where I can recognize that, yes, this is Good Music, and it's fairly enjoyable to listen to, but it doesn't really do very much for me. Will I put this on again? Most likely, no. But it was an enjoyable experience nevertheless. Bonus points for the girls going absolutely hogwild during Lost Someone, haha.

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3

Solid piece of live music. However, I sorta dislike music in general, I don't have the headphones to make it sound "Real." So all I get is some sort of subpar recording with overblown screaming and shouting in the background. It's cool, but I also kind of hate it is a format.

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3

The smoke man live was better

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3

It was okay. Not my type of vibe, but I liked Night Train. I can imagine watching this live must have ben fun, not the same experience when you're just sitting at home

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3

A cyclops on cocaine tugging himself off to the memory of the surrogate mother of his first born.

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3

I saw James brown live at Glastonbury when he was allegedly 80 odd, but in reality he was probably 100. Was underwhelming as he didn't do much other than shout James brown while everyone else did the work. This album surprised me because he actually sings on it.

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3

SHACK

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3

Another live album? 🥴 🥴 🥴 Palpable energy and soul here, but that crowd is so jarring and distracting.

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3

Quality soul from the hardest working man in music.

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3

Not the best live album I’ve heard, but enjoyable enough

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3

Die Band ist einfach nur geil. Finde die Songs nicht so wahnsinnig gut, aber die Arrangements und die Performance sind der Hammer.

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3

I Have confession, I found this album a bit of a slog to get into. Maybe it was my mood but I just didn't find this as good as Live at the Apollo Vol II which I used to play to death as a teen. Something about it just misses the mark for me. Maybe the mix or production doesn't do it justice on Spotify - I feel like I am listening to the gig for the foyer rather than being up front in the thick of the action

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3

Fun! But would prefer a studio album.

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3

14th January 2022 Listened in the shower and while shaving. Went out with coopy and ebbs in the evening. Lovely little half hour with the hardest working man in show business. Great to hear the reaction of him playing to a live audience.

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3

I really like James Brown, but for some reason this album just didn’t resonate with me. My favorite song was actually “Down and Out in New York City”, which came up as a spotify radio recommendation after I finished the live show. Album highlight: Emily walked in from her run and asked why i was listening to someone screaming 😂

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3

Good live album 3 stars

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1/17/22

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3

Not really a James Brown fan, but you can't deny the legacy of the man and the energy of this album. Some performers thrive with live performances and clearly with this and other Apollo live recordings, he is at the top of his game in front of a live audience. He truly is the hardest working man in show biz!

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3

Very exciting, energetic, fun performance. Good doo-wop. Amazing to think James Brown was a leading early 60s soul man as well as the godfather of funk in 70s.

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3

fun

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3

Another live album on the bounce? Goddamn it. So James Brown is infinitely more talented than Cheap Trick (yesterday's live album) and its on that basis alone that this album is going to get three stars. These songs, studio recorded and with production involved, would get 5. Hands down. But live albums can get in the goddamn sea.

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3

It's James Brown. He's good. But, I dunno maybe it's the live-ness but as an album it started to drag.

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3

Pretty good live album

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3

engaging, as Brown usual

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3

Notes written

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3

Loved the live audience and the energy

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3

Live at the Apollo was a great jazz album that lead itself as something akin to a time capsule. It is wonderful to experience the energy from the crowd back in the day. Any woman over the age of 60 who complain about the way girls go gaga for singers these days, should take a good listen to this album, nothing has changed. Best: Try Me Worst: Think

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3

Ok

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3

As with the majority of these ''older'' genres: Nice to hear once but thats about it

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3

James Brown had some slick tricks, still not a fan of live albums though

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3

It was Ight

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3

Was good, not to into it though.

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3

This album was a joy to listen to. Funky, soulful, life affirming. Would listen again

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3

De los discos en vivo de esa época que nos han tocado este ha sido el que menos me ha llamado. Mucho menos enérgico que otros como el de Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis o B.B. King y me no sentí que tuviera los éxitos que esperaba. Tampoco es malo, por lo que alcanza la tercera estrella.

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3

Soulfull album, klinkt als een leuk optreden om live bij aanwezig te zijn geweest. Bij deze opname klinkt het publiek af en toe wel heel sterk door

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3

I love live shows but I'm not much for live albums. It's just not the same. The girls screaming bloody fucking murder between each of his sentences was a pain to listen to. Great music though. I'll give it that.

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3

As someone who is the biggest fan of soul music, the shit fucking rocks. Reminder James Browns in this album was not auto tune. His volcas are amazing. This album you can try to and jam to. If you are/getting into old soul music, LISTEN TO JAMES BROWN. 3/5

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3

James Brown sounds like an incredible performer. He's putting his heart and soul out, and the band does an excellent job backing him up. Sounds a lot more rock n roll and less funk than his studio work. It's a peculiar album, only a half hour in length, with 8 out of 11 tracks taking place in the first 10 minutes, alternating between wild rock songs and slower R&B / doo wop pieces. Brown's interjections define this piece, and I could only imagine how mind-blowing this would be to contemporary listeners. Sounds like his teenage girl audience goes crazy over it! I was impressed by the set list: the progression, styles, and lengths. "Lost Someone" is certainly the star track, after multiple listens the time still flies by. I was expecting a more invigorating experience from Brown overall. Not too many moments stuck out to me. (I was expecting pieces comparable to his hits.) Also, the ending was dull, even the audience seemed to stop caring.

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Vähän kylmäksi jätti vaikka potentiaalia kyllä olisi. Toivottavasti listalle tulee jossain vaiheessa myös Brownin studiolevy.

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boring lol and no guitar

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Meh. I know Brown was a talented, high energy performer, but this album didn’t deliver.

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The band was probably a 4/5 and 50% of JB's singing was 3/5 but the other 50% was incoherent screaming that really didn't sit well with me. That coupled with the way too forward high pitched wailing of the girls was just all a total turn off. Close to a one for me but the band saved it.

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Classic

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It was ok

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I can only listen to so much Blues. It gets me down

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I know that I should liked it more than I liked, but this live album was....just ok, nothing special. it's not up to James Brown

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I think that JB's most influential works came later in the sixties and early seventies. If you're in a bar/club or listening to an old school set you won't hear many of these 50s inspired songs, maybe with the exception of Night Train.

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_Live at the Apollo_ Wow what a short album! James Brown competes with punk acts on short song length. I wasn’t expecting so many “slow” songs, but that is because the only experience with James Brown are all the songs of his which are used in movies. I appreciated the audience participation

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Levyn alussa ollut esittely sai korvat hörölle, nyt saattaa olla kovaa meininkiä tulossa! Live-setti lähtikin vauhdikkaasti liikkeelle, mutta sitten meno äityikin liian siirappiseksi. Olisin toivonut enemmän revittelyä ja halunnut tykätä enemmän. Hyvinhän James esiintyi ja tulkitsi, mutta biisit eivät nyt oikein osuneet.

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Bit meh actually. Was hoping for more.

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I wanted to like it, but it’s too old and tinny.

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James Brown has some good songs. This album does not have really that many good songs.

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Live album. While the interaction with the audience is to be remarked, I'm not a fan of the music on its own. For a live album, the album is surprisingly short, I would have expected more from such a high profile artist. Honestly I find it hard to rate objectively, this is not my style, and while I can clearly picture this as a great background for a lot of calm situations, this doesn't strike me as a great render for a live show. Were I in the audience, I would have found the show quite underwhelming overall, outside of some passage where the author ponders to its audience, causes some hysteria, and shows his vocals talent (which are not to be underestimated).

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This probably deserves three stars, but I'm giving it two out of sheer spite for the ten minute song that didn't need to be that long. Gotta say, I'm pretty disappointed.

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meh

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nice blues, stupid bitches screaming in live performance ... james 5/5 audience 0/5

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I like James Brown, but didn't especially love this particular album

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Thought I was going to hear some funk, but this is pre-funk Brown. Good R&B, with some hints of the horn dominance to come, but not a single "hit me" to be found.

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Is it controversial to say I am unmoved by James Brown? I am sure this album is an attempt to capture some of that live magic and I’m sure that was undoubtedly the case to see him live. But on wax, his voice is garbled and indistinct and - excellent musicianship from the band aside - the whole exercise sounds flat: which it surely can’t have been. Maybe you just had to be there…

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This is the sixtees music I don't like. Slow, without much melody.

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it wasn't my style. probably wouldn't listen to it again.

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I wanted to like this, but I didn't. The band were great, James Brown was alright, the audience screams were grating. Odd way to end a live album with a dead close, no applause, just ends.

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Not bad but also not great, a bit same same really thoughout the album.

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Never been a huge James Brown fan. Listened to one other live (at the Garden '67) which I hated. This one was much more enjoyable. Got the grit, the horns, the singers. All that said, it just is not my thing. Fav song: Lost Someone.

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I just finished listening and the whole time I felt like I should have enjoyed it more than I did. Live albums can be hit or miss, and unfortunately, despite his energy, the quality and the audience (plus my general feelings about the music itself), this wasn't great for me.

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Mid

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Not really my cup of tea.

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This probably deserves three stars, but I'm giving it two out of sheer spite for the ten minute song that didn't need to be that long. Gotta say, I'm pretty disappointed.

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I feel sorry for the cleaner who had to mop the floor that night, must have been sticky from all the dripping vaginas. I also feel sorry for the artist whose album didn't make this list due to a reasonably unremarkable live album (band aside, who sounded very tight).

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Lots of characteristic howling, and a big band sound. The audience were clearly loving it, but it didn't really float my boat. It was fine, but didn't grab me and seemed a bit samey. 2/5.

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Just not a fan of live albums in the main unless they're of bands that i'm super familiar with. James Brown's back catalogue more familiar than some, but still lacked that connection to enjoy the live album

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Не любитель такого джаза

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Naja, hat schon bekannte eingängige Stücke, aber James Brown ist für meinen Geschmack zu schreiend und machomässig unterwegs. Ist nicht wirklich mein Geschmack.

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Not a fan of screeching James Brown

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ok

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Recorded live shows are meh. I'd rather be there live. Also, this isn't my type of music.

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It's no good for me

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I just realized that R&B music follows the Blues scheme. Huh. Anyways, not quite my case ^^

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Anyone with the surname brown is a cunt

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nope

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Not my thing. Although James Brown was known as a great performer.

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Inte för å va rasist men det här var tyvärr jättetråkigt

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Funny hearing the (almost all female) crowd go wild!

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