When a clip from Aerosmith's since-deleted VHS appearance at the Cotton Bowl in 1978 surfaced in February 2010, it made a brief cameo here -- at which time, the great Jeff Liles jumped into the comments to remark upon the quality of that particular performance, which he was fortunate (?) enough to witness first-hand. Wrote Jeff of that letdown: "That was the first time that one my 'untouchable' rock heroes walked out onstage and just flat out SUCKED. ... Aerosmith was so terrible that night that I walked to farthest possible point away from the stage -- the top row of the opposite end zone section -- and just draped a shirt over my head until they were done."
Others agreed. Vehemently.
Which is why I stayed away from the band's Texxas Jam appearance for so long; how worthwhile could it be? But a few weeks back I came across the video cassette at used-book store. It was sticky, cracked and smelled ... weird. Bought it anyway. Cost one whole dollar. Only, it wouldn't play. Just as well. Then I remembered: Three songs from the Texxas World Music Festival, as it was properly known, can be found on the Pandora's Box boxed set: "Lords of the Thighs," "I Wanna Know Why" and "Big Ten-Inch Record." And they don't sound half bad.
So I broke down this afternoon, busted out the converter and listened to the thing for myself. "Sweet Emotion" sounds perfectly fine to me; so too "Toys in the Attic" and "Walk This Way" and all the other Big Hits and Deep Cuts. It's like someone rolled up 1978 in some Zig-Zags. So, yeah, if you need me, I'll be cruising the T.J. parking lot in a GTO a little later. Top priority of the evening.
Bonus: I see the fine gentleman who runs the KZEW tribute page has also just made available the entirety of Heart's performance at the 1978 Texxas Jam, which was broadcast live on The Zoo. You can find it on the jukebox, right between the Dr. Demento bit and that Hunt James appearance.
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