THE KINKS - LOS ANGELES 1978 [MILLARD TAPE]

October 30, 2020 – 5:48 am

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THE KINKS
Los Angeles 1978 [Mike Millard Second Generation Tapes via JEMS, 2CD]

The Lost and Found Mike the MICrophone Tapes Volume 46. Live at the Universal Amphitheatre, Los Angeles, CA; June 25, 1978. Very good audience recording.

Thanks to Mike Millard; Rob, Jim R; Barry G; JEMS; BK; and mjk5510 for sharing the show at Dime.

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Known Faults:
- None

Welcome to JEMS’ Lost and Found Mike the MICrophone series presenting recordings made by legendary taper Mike Millard, AKA Mike the MICrophone, best known for his masters of Led Zeppelin done in and around Los Angeles circa 1975-77.

Until 2020, the Lost and Found series presented fresh transfers of previously unavailable first-generation copies made by Mike himself for friends like Stan Gutoski of JEMS, Jim R, Bill C. and Barry G. These sources were upgrades to circulating copies and in most instances marked the only time verified first generation Millard sources had been directly digitized in the torrent era.

That all changed with the discovery of many of Mike Millard’s original master tapes.

Yes, you read that correctly, Mike Millard’s master cassettes, long rumored to be destroyed or lost, have been found. Not all of them but many, and with them a much more complete picture has emerged of what Millard recorded between his first show in late 1973 and his last in early 1992.

The reason the rediscovery of his master tapes is such a revelation is that we’ve been told for decades they were gone. Internet myths suggest Millard destroyed his master tapes before taking his own life, an imprudent detail likely concocted based on the assumption that because his master tapes never surfaced and Mike’s mental state was troubled he would do something rash WITH HIS LIFE’S WORK. There’s also a version of the story where Mike’s family dumps the tapes after he dies. Why would they do that?

The truth is Mike’s masters remained in his bedroom for many years after his death in 1994. We know at least a few of Millard’s friends and acquaintances contacted his mother Lia inquiring about the tapes at the time to no avail. But in the early 2000s, longtime Millard friend Rob S was the one she knew and trusted enough to preserve Mike’s work.

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The Kinks - Universal Amphitheatre, Los Angeles, CA; June 25, 1978

The search for Millard recordings goes beyond the masters thankfully preserved by Rob S. Our working database of known or presumed Millard captures currently stands at just over 300 and that includes a three-to-four-year gap for which we have very little information but Mike was presumably still taping. For 175+ of those shows we have Mike’s original master tapes or Rob’s master-to-DAT transfers. Beyond that we are collecting first-generation copies Mike himself made for friends like Jim R, Barry G, Stan G, Rob S and others of shows for which no master or DAT transfer is available.

These first-gens fill in the gaps of missing masters and the good news is those numbers are on the rise. Only recently we found another 15-20 missing Millard recordings on first-gen cassettes he gave to another friend. This week, we go one step further. As Jim notes below, The Kinks show at the Universal Amphitheatre was the first time he and Mike saw the band and they loved the show. Mike would go on to tape The Kinks multiple times through at least 1983. He has this Kinks show on his list as Excellent Stereo, but it was not among the masters Rob accessed nor any of the first gens we had gathered so far.

Fortunately, our dear friend RG had a second generation copy of the Millard’s recording in his cassette collection, and better still, it was a properly made dub maintaining the correct Dolby settings from Mike’s original. Mike’s recording has been in circulation for some time. It was torrented here on DIME in 2016 by proufo. This new verified second generation transfer is a major upgrade to that copy.

All that being said we did question introducing a second-generation source into our series even for an otherwise lost show, but the underlying recording is so good and so much better than the extant copy. As good as this show would sound if we had the master tapes, the second-gen transfer is excellent quality, with stunning up-close sound, detail and no hiss issues thanks to the Dolby compliance noted above. If it didn’t sound so good, we wouldn’t have bothered, sound quality that was perhaps aided by the Universal Amphitheatre still being in its open-air state, before the roof was added in 1982.

This is a thoroughly entertaining Kinks performance on tour in support of Misfits, released the month before. The album furthered their status as a staple on AOR FM stations around the country and in doing so triggered something of a renaissance for the Kinks in the US that would be cemented further by Low Budget in 1979.

The mix of new and sometimes rearranged old songs in the set was very effective and Ray Davies charm comes through in spades.

Here’s what Jim R recalled about the Kinks show:

I attended The Kinks concert with Mike Millard at the Universal Amphitheatre on June 25, 1978.

At that time, Mike and I were not big Kinks fans and went to the show out of curiosity to see what all the hype from our friends was about. That skepticism changed after the show as we became instant fans. The performance really opened our ears and eyes. Afterwards we were both saying to each other, “How come we didn’t see them earlier?”

Because we were not big fans yet, we did not spring for the expensive seats. Instead we sat in Section 17 Row F. This is about 20-25 rows back and halfway between dead center and the far left edge. I did not bother taking pictures, but the quality of the recording is amazing considering we were far from our “sweet spot.” Definitely a tribute to the acoustics of the Universal Amphitheatre and the pulling power of Mike’s AKG microphones.

Ray Davies is quite the showman. Multiple times throughout the night he would tease the audience with the beginning of “Lola” only to say they were not ready to play it yet. In fact, the first time he did this, just before “Waterloo Sunset,” you can hear Mike clearly responding to the tease. A classic Millard reaction. Now some of you know what Mike’s voice sounds like.

I hope you all appreciate the show. This one sure stuck in my memory, some 42 years later, as it propelled Mike and I to become loyal Kinks fans. In fact, we saw them on the following tour in 1979 and sat in the Orchestra Pit also at the Universal Amphitheatre. Enjoy.

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JEMS is proud to partner with Rob, Jim R, Barry G and many others to release Millard’s historic recordings and to help set the record straight about the man himself.

We can’t thank Rob enough for reconnecting with Jim and putting his trust in our Millard reissue campaign. He kept Mike’s precious tapes under wraps for two decades, but once Rob learned of our methods and stewardship, he agreed to contribute the Millard DATs and cassettes to the program. Our releases would not be nearly as compelling without Jim’s memories, photos and other background contributions. As many of you have noted, the stories offer an entertaining complement to Mike’s incredible audio documents.

Thanks to Goody for giving this one his stamp of approval on pitch and to RG for letting us mine his rich collection of tapes. We never expected him to fill this gap for us but we’re so glad he could.

We can never take for granted the contributions of mjk5510 on all Millard releases and overall JEMS output. On top of that, he’s running awesome series himself posting the work of other great tapers. Search his name and be wowed by his contributions.

Finally, cheers to the late, great Mike the MICrophone. His work never ceases to impress, even in second generation form. May he rest in peace.

BK for JEMS

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Lineage:
AKG 451E Microphones (CK-1 cardioid capsules) > Nakamichi 550 Cassette Recorder
Transfer: Mike Millard Second Generation Cassette via RG > Nakamichi RX-505 (azimuth adjustment; Dolby On) > Sound Devices USBPre 2 > Audacity 2.0 capture > iZotope RX7 > iZotope Ozone 8 > Audacity > Peak Pro 6 > FLAC

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (320 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Please Do Not Hammer The Links. Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. The tracks should still be around. Please try again later.

Kindly email us if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files. Also email us if you have any rarities you’d like to share with our readers.

Disc 1
Track 101. You Really Got Me Intro 2:25
Track 102. Life On The Road 6:10
Track 103. Sleepwalker 4:14
Track 104. Mr Big Man 7:32
Track 105. Waterloo Sunset 4:25
Track 106. Misfits 5:43
Track 107. Permanent Waves 4:30
Track 108. Hay Fever 5:40
Track 109. Lola 5:10
Track 110. Celluloid Heroes 5:20
52 mins

Disc 2
Track 201. Well Respected Man 1:40
Track 202. Death Of A Clown 1:04
Track 203. Sunny Afternoon 5:05
Track 204. Trust Your Heart 4:07
Track 205. You Really Got Me 3:00
Track 206. Slum Kids 6:38
Track 207. Alcohol 6:36
Ducks On The Wall - missing?
Track 208. A Rock n Roll Fantasy 5:02
Track 209. All Day And All Of The Night 3:48
Track 210. Live Life 8:06
Track 211. Juke Box Music 5:38
51 mins

Click here to order Kinks releases.

  1. 4 Responses to “THE KINKS - LOS ANGELES 1978 [MILLARD TAPE]”

  2. Great! Many thanks, BigO!

    By Josef (Czech reublic) on Oct 30, 2020

  3. I’m a piece of garbage . Wait for my next two comments

    By U L E on Oct 30, 2020

  4. Twernt me above. Nuther fake

    By U L E on Oct 31, 2020

  5. Rumor has it this was a band of Lil Uns

    By U L E on Oct 31, 2020

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