Not a huge fan of live albums they tend to get a tad shouty but for this recording by Jimmy James & The Vagabonds we'll make an exception. It is the closest thing one can get to a mid 20th century British club sound warts and all we've been told by some much older folk. This balanced with the sleeve art and notes by Peter Meaden the man that created The Who (and Richard Barnes old flat mate he of 1979 'Mods' book fame). I should also point out Meaden managed The High Numbers, The Who and Jimmy James and the Vagabonds too.
The album was recorded live at the Birdcage in Portsmouth UK. The Birdcage was suffice to say a very important club in the 1960's with acts such as The Action, playing there often and virtually the house band, you can seem remnants of an Action poster at the Marquee behind the guy leaning on the bin (trash can/poubelle). Other fine acts at The Birdcage included: Ben E King, Brian Auger, Chris Farlowe, David Bowie & The Lower Third, The Steampacket, The Small Faces and The Spencer Davis Group.
The girl on the cover was at a local convent school (Cilla Gillmore) and she escaped from the nuns for the night to attend the gig. Jimmy James & The Vagabonds would at the end of the night often welcome their fans up on the stage for the final number- as The Coventry Automatics and Sham 69 did many summers later.
Thankfully none of the Nuns at the Portsmouth convent schools were closet modernists otherwise the girl would have got 20 lashes and 50 Hail Marys. Captured on the cover in Kodak red handed and rosey cheeked with Jimmy James for all the tasteful world to see.
Here in all its glory is the Anglozine version alas its been scrawled on by Jimmy James and the most impressive vagabond Count Prince Miller (R.I.P). So much detail and content on this sleeve its a veritable zine.