61. Jeff Buckley – Live at Sin-é (1993/2003)
1. Be Your Husband
2. Lover, You Should’ve Come Over
3. Mojo Pin*
4. Monologue – Duane Eddy, Songs For Lovers
6. Monologue – Reverb, The Doors
7. Strange Fruit
8. Night Flight
9. If You Knew
10. Monologue – Fabulous Time For A Guinness
11. Unforgiven (Last Goodbye)
12. The Twelfth Of Never
13. Monologue – Cafe Days
14. Monologue – Eternal Life
15. Eternal Life*
16. Just Like a Woman
17. Monologue – False Start, Apology, Miles Davis
18. Calling You
19. Monologue – Nusrat, He’s My Elvis
20. Yeh Jo Halka Saroor Hae
21. Monologue – I’m A Ridiculous Person
22. If You See Her, Say Hello
23. Monologue – Matt Dillon, Hollies, Classic Rock Radio
24. Dink’s Song
25. Monologue – Musical Chairs
26. Drown In My Own Tears
27. Monologue – The Suckiest Water
28. The Way Young Lovers Do*
29. Monologue – Walk Through Walls
30. Je N’en Connais Pas La Fin*
31. I Shall Be Released
32. Sweet Thing
33. Monologue – Good Night Bill
Who is/are Jeff Buckley?
According to the all-knowing Wikipedia, Jeff Buckley “was an American singer-songwriter and guitarist”.
Succinct as ever.
Why did you buy this album?
This is actually the “Legacy Edition” of ‘Live at Sin-é‘, containing a full document of recordings Buckley made at the Sin-é coffee house in New York. I already had the original 4-track EP version, containing ‘Mojo Pin‘, ‘Eternal Life‘, ‘Je n’en connais pas la fin‘, and ‘The Way Young Lovers Do‘, having purchased it as part of a box set with later live compilation ‘Mystery White Boy‘.
Listening to various songs from this extended edition over the years made me realise I was probably missing out on something special, so I waited until it was a reasonable price on Amazon, and went for it, resigning the EP edition to a box in our attic†.
What’s it like?
It’s pretty simple. The whole collection is just Buckley and his guitar, singing a mix of covers and original material, in a coffee house in New York’s East Village.
At its best, it shows a remarkable talent honing his skills, with some brilliant performances of soon-to-be classic songs. At its worst, it shows a somewhat self-indulgent side to Buckley, a little too fond of noodling on his guitar and stretching songs past their breaking point (*cough* ‘The Way Young Lovers Do‘ *cough*).
After listening to it now, do you (still) like this album?
When he gets going with his own material, and keeps it relatively brief, this album is great.
When he interacts with the crowd/coffee shop patrons/sound tech, and improvises some brief snatches of songs, it’s good.
When he stretches a 3 minutes Van Morrison song out to over three times its original length, it’s tedious.
Any stand-out tracks?
‘Eternal Life‘ is one of my favourite Jeff Buckley songs, and the version here is great.
Notable mentions also go to ‘Je n’en connais pas la fin‘, being as it is the only song request I’ve had be accepted by BBC 6Music to date, and, of course, ‘Hallelujah‘.
Rating out of 10?
Next up: Jeff Buckley – Grace
*Tracks from the 1993 EP. All others unreleased until 2003 edition.
†Along with 3 Colours Red’s ‘Pure‘, Dido’s ‘No Angel‘, and the soundtrack to ‘Mission: Impossible 2‘.