The Tim Buckley Archives

Concert Reviews

August 28,1974

Wollman Rink, New York
Blood, Sweat & Tears/Tim Buckley

By Barry Taylor

Since augmenting their lineup with second lead vocalist and saxophonist Jerry LaCroix, Blood, Sweat & Tears have undergone a spirited revitalization. Jerry Fisher, the group's other front man, now handles the low-keyed or jazzier numbers in their repertoire but his voice lacks the color and his presence fails to kindle the spark of LaCroix's. Most disappointing about their July 27 performance was his feeble delivery on God Bless The Child.

The quality of musicianship in this incarnation of the group is better than it has been for some time. Bassist Ron McClure, who joined the band earlier in the year along with Bill Tillman, complements Bobby Colomby's drumming to provide the group with a crisp rhythm section, while Tillman blew a couple of excellent solos on saxophone and flute.

An impromptu reunion with Al Kooper, the founder of the group, was a pleasant surprise for the audience when he sat in on organ for a nostalgic version of I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know from the Columbia group's debut album released five years ago. LaCroix provided the soul drenching vocal while Fisher wisely remained in the shadows.

DiscReet recording artist Tim Buckley squared off with the audience and fought them to a draw after a little more than an hour of battle. For the uninitiated, Buckley's bittersweet style can be considered a bit bizarre and often overwhelming. Without notice, he may stop strumming his 12-string guitar in the middle of a song and carry on by using his voice as an instrument--howling, growling or hooting with wild abandon.

While sections of the audience used every opportunity granted them to show their disapproval of Buckley's vocal pyrotechnics, but backed by a quartet that included bassist Jim Fielder (an original member of BS&T), and guitarist Art Johnson, he soldiered on indignantly through numbers like Sally Go 'Round The Roses, Honey Man" and Quicksand, winding up with an exhaustive Gypsy Woman.

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