Listening booth — The Crusaders live in Colchester, 1978

Today marks the first time I’m making a live bootleg available on GFS, but I think it’s worth the wait in this case. What we have here is a smooth, yet super-funky 1978 set by the Crusaders performing at North Essex Polytechnic in the United Kingdom. This show, the group’s last on their supporting tour of the Images album, was broadcast by the BBC and that’s what you’ll hear today.

By this point in the group’s history, it had been eight years since they changed their name from the Jazz Crusaders. That much will be obvious on first listen, as these songs draw much more from the wells of funk and R&B than jazz. It’s also a different sound than even the early Crusaders years showcased, as founding member and trombonist Wayne Henderson departed a few years prior to become a full-time producer.

The lineup for this show features the founding trio of Joe Sample (keyboards), Wilton Felder (saxophone), and Stix Hooper (drums), as well as Robert “Pops” Popwell (bass) and Billy Rogers (guitar). The grooves are tighter than a new pair of briefs and smoother than the tires on my old Camaro.

(These are all in .mp3 format by the way, so lossless format snobs need not bother. I’ve got nothin’ against .FLAC files, except they’re just so damn huge.)

Here’s the set list:

1. (radio introduction)
2. Chain Reaction
3. Sweet n’ Sour
4. I Felt the Love
5. Snowflake
6. Crossfire
7. There Are Many Stops Along the Way – from Joe Sample’s Rainbow Seeker LP
8. Put It Where You Want It
9. Spiral

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6 thoughts on “Listening booth — The Crusaders live in Colchester, 1978

  1. Marshall Wood

    Hi Chris,
    Thank you for posting this. It means a lot as I am Billy Roger’s cousin. I have been searching everywhere for recordings of him with and without the Crusaders. Would you mind emailing me? I’d appreciate it. Again, many many thanks.


  2. Jim Wilson

    Hi Chris, I have been looking on-line for this for a very long time! I got a cassette tape copy of it many years ago from a good friend of mine who died tragically and I never got to ask him where it came from as the tape was unlabelled. I wore the casette out and am thrilled to get this great performance again. Many thanks.

  3. Arizona Jones

    This is a cool post of one of my favorite bands. Thanks. Here is a post on my blog of a great bootleg that you might not have.

    1. Chris Holmes

      Looks good, I’ll have to check it out.

  4. Terleugnin

    amazing stuff, I forgot how great Billy Rogers was. This is an invaluable recording of a great band

    1. Chris Holmes

      Glad you enjoyed it!

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