May 25, 2015 – 5:11 am

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Lost California Performances - Irvine 1975 [JF Archive Series No. 5 via JEMS, 1CD]

Live at Crawford Hall, University of California, Irvine, CA; June 6, 1975 (11 pm/late show). Fairly to very good audience recording.

If you are a fan, this series is both a revelation and a wonderful find. Thanks to taper JF; BK; JEMS; and mjk5510 for sharing the show at Dime.


The fifth release from JF’s archive is something special. Not only is it an uncirculated Van Morrison recording from 40 years ago, but, to the best of our knowledge, no details of this performance can be found in any reference we could find on the web of Morrison’s touring history, the most definitive of which is the German site

Vanomatic lists a mere 22 shows taking place in all of 1975, and, inexplicably, the only extant record of any ‘75 performance is a single 18-minute recording and six-song set list from the Great American Music Hall, San Francisco, April 21. How Van Morrison, given his stature in 1975, could play 22 concerts, all but one of which (Buffalo) was in California, most of which were in San Francisco, and have them go completely unrecorded and undocumented is bizarre to say the least. But that changes now.

The late set in Irvine does appear in Vanomatic’s list of ‘75 shows but with no known setlist. It becomes the third full recording from ‘75, with three more JF tapes to come, so we go from 18 minutes of a single ‘75 show to half a dozen full, uncirculated shows. We’ve named JF’s six recordings from 1975 the Lost California Performances.

Thanks to some legwork by JF and the cooperation of other Van collectors, this show is transferred from the original master cassettes. As noted earlier in our series, it was JF’s practice to copy his masters onto reels and reuse the cassettes. But in the case of Van Morrison, the artist he taped the most, he kept the masters intact. The tapes were loaned out over the years, but JF was recently able to get half of them back, so thanks to those who helped transport them to JEMS for fresh transfers.


The 11 pm show at Crawford Hall mirrors most of the early-show setlist (click here), staying in the same bluesy lane with covers of Mose Allison’s “One Of These Days” and Leadbelly’s “Sweet Mary Blues.” The one new addition is “You Move Me.” If anything, Van is shouting even more as the night wears on, culminating in another epic “St Dominic’s Preview” that again references Lou Reed’s “Walk On The Wild Side” and the Rolling Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.” The set-closing “Moondance” also gets tagged with a bit of Peggy Lee’s “Fever.”

Here’s what JF recalled about the Irvine shows:

“This was the second show in a mini-Van marathon. Saw two shows this night in Irvine, two the next in Riverside and one more on the afternoon of the following day in Santa Barbara. There were no seats for this show - people gathered around the stage on the floor of the college basketball arena and danced or just hung out and listened. I set up back by the sound booth in the center of the hall, warily eyeing Van’s sound people so they wouldn’t catch me recording and secretly wishing I could tap into their line feed from the stage.

Among my memorabilia I recently found an old newspaper ad for the concerts at Irvine and Riverside. To my astonishment, I ‘learned’ that Roger McGuinn was the supporting act. I had completely forgotten that and only vaguely have some recollection of that now that my memory has been jogged. I mention it because this is another example of how my girlfriend Laura Greenwood and I would go off into Van-trances for these short periods when he would tour Southern California. I was a big fan of McGuinn and the Byrds, and yet for decades, until reminded of it, I had no idea that I saw him perform as a warm-up act for Van.”

Thanks to JF, who reached out on DIME (you could be next!) and offered us his archive, which had been sitting in boxes, 6000 miles away from where he lives today, for 20+ years. Like so many early tapers, he had great stories to tell and the memories flooded back as we sorted through tapes. We are pleased to be able to bring his work to all of you.

We also appreciate the unnamed Van collectors for helping to get JF’s masters back in his control. And finally mjk5510, who continues to be at the ready to finish off JEMS’ projects. Much appreciated.


Click here for the lossless flacs.

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Source: unknown recorder > unknown microphone
JEMS 2015 Transfer: JF master Memorex cassettes > Nakamichi CR-7A (azimuth adjustment) > Sound Devices USBPre 2 > Audacity 2.0 (24/96) capture > iZotope RX4 > Peak 6.0 with iZotope Ozone 5 > iZotope RX MBIT+ resample 16/44.1 > Peak Pro XT (edit / index) > xACT 2.21 > FLAC

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (224 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 at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Track 01. Alright OK 4:06 (6.9MB)
Track 02. One Of These Days 4:54 (8.2MB)
Track 03. Wild Night 6:40 (11.2MB)
Track 04. Sweet Mary Blues 7:22 (12.4MB)
Track 05. TB Sheets 6:57 (11.7MB)
Track 06. You Move Me 5:34 (9.4MB)
Track 07. I’ve Been Working 14:17 (24.0MB)
Track 08. Domino 4:58 (8.3MB)
Track 09. Brown Eyed Girl 5:29 (9.2MB)
Track 10. St Dominic’s Preview Medley 13:26 (22.6MB)
Track 11. Gloria 4:03 (6.8MB)
Track 12. Moondance/Fever 5:28 (9.2MB)
84 mins

Overburn to keep all the tracks onto one audio disc.

Van Morrison- vocals
John Blakely - guitar
Mark T Jordan - keyboards
David Hayes - bass
Tony Dey - drums

Click here to order Van Morrison releases.

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  1. 2 Responses to “VAN MORRISON - IRVINE 1975 (LATE SHOW)”

  2. I was at this show. It rocked.

    By Just Bill on May 27, 2015

  3. Thanks! Nice bluesy set, some rare live Van material here. Sounds like Van on alto sax, I don’t see any other horns credited.

    By Bill on Jun 1, 2015

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