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Steve Earle - Live from Austin, TX

4.3 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Live performance from the noted singer-songwriter, recorded in Austin, Texas and featuring such tracks as 'Sweet Little '66', 'State Trooper' and 'Angry Young Man'.

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Digging deep into its vaults, the venerable Austin City Limits offers this 1986 performance by Steve Earle. The native Texan's series debut finds Earle in the midst of his headstrong breakthrough, drawing from the Guitar Town and Exit 0 albums that put him at the front of the renegade country pack. Within the former album's title track and other performance highlights such as "Good Ol Boy (Gettin' Tough)" and "Nowhere Road," Earle and his band the Dukes combine country twang with rock dynamics. In his t-shirt and blue jeans, Earle plainly draws more populist inspiration from Bruce Springsteen than George Strait, introducing a taut, riveting cover of Springsteen's "State Trooper" as a song by "a pretty good hillbilly singer from New Jersey." Working the stage with the intensity of a prizefighter in the ring, Earle revels in the emotional recklessness of "The Week of Living Dangerously," while tapping the influence of both punk rock and Elvis Presley on "I Love You Too Much." The performance showcases his softer side as well, with the reflective balladry of "My Old Friend the Blues" and the tender lullaby of "Little Rock 'n' Roller" packing as much of an emotional punch as the tougher stuff. With steel guitarist Bucky Baxter highlighting the band, the keyboards of Ken Moore mixed to the front, and the harmony vocals of Harry Stinson tempering Earle's singing, the set presents one of country's most powerful artists at his performing peak. --Don McLeese

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Eric "Roscoe" Ambel, Steve Earle, Kelley Looney, Will Rigby
  • Directors: Gary Menotti
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: New West Records
  • DVD Release Date: November 2, 2004
  • Run Time: 65 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00064VQYE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #36,676 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Richardson VINE VOICE on November 1, 2004
Format: DVD
okay....if you are a fan of Steve Earle...it may have started with GUITAR TOWN...the amazing major label debut which featured more classic tunes than most songwriters put out in a lifetime...well, they are ALL on this stunning DVD. Filmed for Austin City Limits (so the quality is broadcast)...in 1986....and featuring 17 tracks delivered with passion ...you simply can't go wrong. I actually couldn't believe my eyes when I saw this at the record store today....and am watching it for a second time as I write this review.

I think Earle has gone from strength to strength over his career and is relevant now...but that said....this is the stuff that his fans fell in love with and its so wonderfully captured and presented that it almost too beautiful to believe that we have this gift of an amazing songwriter at his first blossom!
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I'm a fan of the early Steve Earle, which this disk certainly is, but I played it once and will sell it. I see it as a mostly uninspired set where the band plays and Steve sings, both without much inspiration. There is just nothing exciting about it and the performance just about totally lacks spontaneity. They had a set list and they played it as they had rehearsed it with lots of competence but no inspiration that was evident to me. I was really disappointed as I bought it after reading the otherwise excellent reviews. I suggest renting it first; maybe you'll agree with the other reviewers but maybe not.
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Format: DVD
There was a time when I thought Steve Earle hung the moon.

Back in the dark ages, I had a 90-minute Maxell mix tape I made (from vinyl, no less) comprised of the best of his first four albums that I listened to incessantly. Equal parts early 70's Rolling Stones, late 70's Bruce Springsteen, Hank Williams, and Johnny Cash, those four albums, with and without The Dukes, were nothing short of triumphant - scary good - and packed to the gills with tales of steel belts hummin' on the asphalt, two-pack habits, and motel tans, layered with a liberal coating of twang and unvarnished bliss. Earle seemed poised to take over Nashville, if not the world.

Maybe it was the six failed marriages, the crack addiction, or sudden career shift to yardbird, but Earle lost his way, marking a brief near-return to the glory days with the "Train A Comin'" and "I Feel Alright" albums before apparently deciding that making some sort of grand political statement was more important than writing a really good song. Regrettably, I gave up on him years ago.

This DVD is the fleshed-out version of Earle's first ever appearance on "Austin City Limits," originally edited down to 30 minutes for television broadcast, and it showcases a guy giddy with the thrill of using guitar, drums, and amps to make a beautiful noise without worrying about the global implications of making rock and roll music. And at the risk of causing some people heartburn, make no mistake about it; this is rock and roll, not country (or at least not your daddy's country).
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Format: DVD
One rarely gets the opportunity to re-approach a classic album such as Earle's "Guitar Town" with fresh ears. But that's exactly what this CD and DVD provide with their looks at Earle's 1986 Austin City Limits appearance, expanded from the 30 minute television edit to the full hour performance. Riding the crest of his landmark debut, and with half of his follow-up, "Exit 0," in his hip-pocket, Earle lights up the stage with a giddy passion fueled by his incredible initial cache of material.

Listeners who've worn out their original vinyl will be renewed by the sparkle Earle brings to the stage. Dressed in a white t-shirt and jeans, he looks the role of the dreamers who populate his songs, cruising their pickups and homemade muscle cars through small-town America. This first blush of performing bravado winds the clock back on an album that's become an Americana staple: Earle performs everything from "Guitar Town" save "Someday," and works through half of its follow-up. His band translates the songs to stage with few changes, roughing up a few of the album's tidy edges with live vitality.

Whether unwinding the freedom of "Guitar Town" or wallowing in the emotional scars of "Little Rock & Roller," Earle can't help beam with the pride he has in his songs. The closing "I Love You Too Much" and encore of "San Antonio Girl" find the singer wringing every last drop of enjoyment out of his time on stage. Save for a cover of Bruce Springsteen's "State Trooper" Earle "made all these songs up," and a more compelling collection of vignettes and characters would be hard to find.
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Format: DVD
All Steve Earle fans know just how good Steve Earle is musically, and with his song writing ability. This DVD concert is one to have for every Steve Earle fan out there. It's Steve in his early ears, before the drugs, before the politics, before "Copperhead Road", before he was known as a two hit wonder. This DVD is just pure Steve Earle at an early age (you can hardly tell it's him comparning him to the Steve Earle we know today) but the voice is still the same, and it's the voice that has made Steve the man he is today. You can hear some of the early live versions of songs that became huge hits such as "The Devil's Right Hand", "Guitar Town", "Angry Young Man", "Down The Road" and so on. The audio on this DVD is also excellent considering it was recorded in the 1980's (funny to see how the crowd was dressed). The only reason I only gave this DVD 4 stars is because there are no extras at all, not even a small bio or discorgraphy or anything. You have 'play' and 'song selection'. Simple DVD, great concert by a great artist.
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