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Long Beach 1979 [Mike Millard Master Tape via JEMS, 2CD]

The Lost and Found Mike the MICrophone Tapes Volume 170. Live at the Long Beach Arena, Long Beach, CA; May 26, 1979. Very good audience recording.

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

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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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Yes - Long Beach Arena, Long Beach, CA; May 26, 1979

The Lost and Found series carries into the New Year with one of Mike’s favorites, Yes, playing their second night “In The Round” at the Long Beach Arena. This is the companion release to Vol 98, which presented Mike’s excellent first night recording of the two-show stand.

Yes was on tour in support of the band’s ninth studio album, Tormato. The Yes line-up in 1979 was Jon Anderson on vocals, Steve Howe on guitar, Chris Squire on bass, Alan White on drums and Rick Wakeman on keyboards. While Tormato may not be the most beloved Yes album, the 1979 tour is no slouch in terms of performance. Presenting the show in the round on a rotating stage seems like a novelty now, but it was seen as state of the art back then and surely a technical marvel to pull off. The turntable platform would slowly turn one direction, then stop and eventually unwind back in the other direction as Jim details below.

The setlist was steady on this tour, so both Long Beach shows are identical in terms of songs played, but there are nuances aplenty between the two shows. As for sound quality, the first night sounds a bit closer to the PA, but perhaps the second night is slightly fuller? Hard to say. I’m not sure if the In the Round staging had any bearing on this but Mike was losing some high end in the right channel during select spots in the show. We’ve done our best in mastering to correct for that, but if you’re listening (in headphones especially) you may well notice a subtle shift in the sonic landscape.

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Here’s what Jim R recalled about seeing Yes In The Round in Long Beach in 1979:

Mike and I attended both nights of Yes at the Long Beach Arena in 1979.

Yes was one of our favorite groups musically and an early bond in our friendship. I first met Mike at a Yes concert in the same venue during the 1974 Tales tour. We attended every LA-area show that followed including this 1979 two-night stand in Long Beach. To say the least, we were dedicated Yes fans.

On May 26, we sat in the second row from the stage. The previous night we sat in the eighth row. For this tour it was “Yes In The Round,” featuring a rotating stage with stationary lighting and sound rigs. The stage was in the middle of the floor.

In The Round brings more people closer to the stage - great for those further away, but lousy for Mike and I, as half the group was behind us half the time instead of being in front of us all the time. On the plus side, we got a close-up view of drummer Alan White, who was usually in the back.

Rick Wakeman was back for this tour, which is always a highlight for me. The band was very tight as usual. All the musicians are virtuosos on their respective instruments. The sound by Clair Brothers was top notch.

The Long Beach Arena always meant one crappy thing: Troy Tickets. Troy was in cahoots with Stan, the General Manager of the Arena and got at least half the tickets to any major concert. We were forced to go through Troy to get anything in the first ten rows.

The Long Beach Arena is close to the beach and as such had a “Surfer Dude” sort of vibe, which also meant security was more laid back than The Forum, which aided my ability to bring in my camera bag along with Mike’s gear.

I hope you enjoy the sights and sounds as much as Mike and I did.

Cheers to my buddy Mike.

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JEMS is proud to partner with Rob, Jim R, Ed F, 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.

Another year of the Lost and Found series is in the books and we look forward to 2023 to release more of Mike’s incredible work here on DIME and elsewhere (for those DIME unfriendly artists). Our weekly releases would ground to a halt if not for the contribution of the extended JEMS family: Rob S, who did this transfer; Jim R, who shot and scanned the outstanding photographs; Professor Goody, who nailed the pitch; and mjk5510 who created the artwork and handled the final clean up and post production on this week’s release as he always and tirelessly does. Thanks for a great 2022. Keep those comments coming.

Finally, here’s to the late, great Mike the MICrophone. His work never ceases to impress. May he rest in peace.

Happy New Year.

December 31, 2022

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AKG 451E Microphones (CK-1 cardioid capsules) > Nakamichi 550 Cassette Recorder
JEMS 2022 Transfer: Mike Millard Master Cassettes > Nakamichi Cassette Deck 1 azimuth-adjusted playback > Sound Devices USBPre2 > Audacity 3.1 capture > iZotope RX > iZotope Ozone > MBIT+ resample to 16/44.1 > Audacity > xACT 2.50 > 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.

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Disc 1
Track 101. Siberian Khatru 11:41
Track 102. Heart Of The Sunrise 11:40
Track 103. Future Times/Rejoice 7:23
Track 104. Circus Of Heaven 5:37
Track 105. Time And A Word 4:05
Track 106. Long Distance Runaround 2:18
Track 107. Survival 0:57
Track 108. The Fish (Schindleria Praematurus) 7:27
Track 109. Perpetual Change 6:31
Track 110. Soon 6:59
Track 111. The Clap 6:21
71 mins

Disc 2
Track 201. And You And I 10:38
Track 202. Starship Trooper 12:11
Track 203. Wakeman Solo 6:01
Track 204. Awaken 17:40
Track 205. Tour Song 2:22
Track 206. I’ve Seen All Good People 7:45
Track 207. Roundabout 8:30
66 mins

   Click here to order Yes releases.

  1. 7 Responses to “YES - LONG BEACH 1979 [MILLARD TAPE]”

  2. Yes at their last great gasp of being an A-list band. They’d come back in 1984 with another lineup and a #1 hit, but it wouldn’t be the same. Few know only Bruce Springsteen and the Grateful Dead played Philadelphia’s Spectrum more than Yes did. Thanks BigO for a great sounding, historic show. Interestingly, the latest iteration of Yes will release a new album next month which recalls a cleaner version of these classic recordings.

    By Tony on May 5, 2023

  3. @Tony, you’re beginning to sound like swappers. You don’t happen to like Everything but the Girl, do you?

    By Leonard on May 5, 2023

  4. Thank you Big O amigos. JS

    By James Smith on May 5, 2023

  5. Hey James, I bet this will get Thompson rockin’ tonite!

    By HHH on May 6, 2023

  6. Thanks BigO! This a a nice companion to the Long Beach show from the night before - also a Mike Millard tape. One note: The last Track keeps giving me an error when I try to download it.

    By Walter on May 6, 2023

  7. Yes i sucked off bigO so he wouldn’t ban me

    By Derrick on May 7, 2023

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

    By U L E on May 7, 2023

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