Concert Performances

Image      The following concert performances by Leo Kottke have been transcribed from video, radio and live performances.  They are organized alphabetically.  They include his anecdotal interludes between (and sometimes during) songs and they identify the tunes he plays.

     Please note that the transcripts do not indicate every time the audience laughs during the concert (which happens quite a bit), as this would detract from the readability of the text.  You can probably imagine from reading the text when the audience was laughing.  Leo's "uhs" and "you knows" have also been edited out for ease of readibility.

Austin City Limits -- Show #1 Leo first appeared on the PBS television program Austin City Limits in 1981.  This performance includes Leo's infamous "how to kill a chicken" story.
Austin City Limits -- Show #2 Leo appeared on this episode of Austin City Limits sometime in the late 1980s.  During this performance, Leo was joined on stage for a song by his friend and fellow musical wonder, Lyle Lovett.
Austin City Limits -- Show #3 This is a September 1995 appearance on Austin City Limits.  This performance is especially notable for Leo's explanation for the original of "Peckerwood" -- his version of the Woody Woodpeckers theme.
Bathurst St. Theatre (Toronto, Ontario) This Canadian concert performance was included on Leo's 1989 Home and Away video.  The transcript also includes all the non-concert material from the video (e.g., Leo's visits to Nashville, Leo at home in Minnesota).   If you want to know how to find the video, follow this link.
BBC Radio 1 This 1989 radio interview was conducted in the U.K. by Richard Skinner.  In it, Leo talks about his then-new album My Father's Face.  He also reminisces about his dad, T-Bone Burnett, and the origin of the title for the tune "William Powell."
BBC Radio 3 (broadcast from St. Paul, Minnesota) This 1993 radio interview was conducted in St. Paul by two unidentified employees of the British Broadcasting Corporation Radio.  Leo answered their questions and played a number of tunes during this 30-minute appearance.  Leo makes some interesting comments about improvisation during the interview.
The Bottom Line (New York, New York) This November 3, 1990, performance was recorded live at The Bottom Line in New York as part of a special for Japanese television.  Of special interest is the fact that Leo stands while playing for the entire set.  In the last several years, Leo has started to perform while standing because he feels that sitting down in somehow "rude" to the audience.  I think he just likes the challenge.
Cambridge Folk Festival (England) On July 30, 1995, Leo performed at the Cambridge Folk Festival in England.  Leo tells a couple of interesting anecodotes here:  The first ("hand-to-hand combat") is also on his latest live album, and the second is a rather sad story about a lithographer from Ljubljana in the former Yugoslavia.
Champaign, Illinois (1975)This concert at the University of Illinois in Champaign took place on Halloween in 1975.  Apparently, there was a fellow in the audience dressed up as a Quaalude.  Leo talks about how his father tried to teach him how to fight as a child, and about his father-in-law's experience with Lawrence Welk's band.
Champaign, Illinois (1974)Another concert in Champaign, this one in 1974.   Applause throughout this show is very enthusiastic -- even for Leo -- which explains his repeated thanks..
Decatur, IllinoisThis concert at the Kirkland Fine Arts Center at Millikin University took place on October 1, 1977.  Leo was having a tough time with the sound equipment.
Fiesta Texas (broadcast on Texas Connection, TNN) This 1993 appearance was recorded at Fiesta Texas, a musical theme park in San Antonio, for Texas Connection on The Nashville Network (TNN).  This broadcast was reviewed by People magazine.
Fox Theater, Boulder Colorado This excerpt from Leo's 1995 concert (recorded for Leo Kottke LIVE) describes Leo's opinion about hand-to-hand combat and Roy Autry.
Fred Winston Show, WLUP FM 97.9 Leo did this 1994 radio interview in Chicago, Illinois in the wee morning hours after doing a set at the Park West club.  Leo talks to the host about his then-new album Peculiaroso.   He answers some questions from listeners and also plays a few tunes.
Fifth Avenue Theater (Seattle, Washington) This February 21, 1987, performance was recorded at the Fifth Avenue Theater in Seattle, Washington.  Here, we find out that Leo prefers (1) playing sitting down and (2) being in the basement.
Irish Centre, Leeds, West Yorkshire This performance is from March 14, 1996, in the United Kingdom.  It has a couple of interesting anecdotes about Leo's encounter with blues player Mississipi Fred Macdowell and also the origin of the title for the tune "My Aunt Francis."
Kettering, Ohio [venue unknown]This outdoor concert from summer 1989 features Leo's famous chicken-killing story, as well as reminiscences on his days as a trombone player, morgue "burps," and a visit early in his career to his Aunt Frances and Uncle Ernie in Los Angeles.
Los Angeles, California This May 31, 1991 performance was recorded at an unknown venue in L.A.  Leo talks about his encounter with a bad smell in a recording studio and also about an old acquaintance and his dental hallucinations.
Maine (1977) A very brief 1977 performance recorded at an unknown venue in Maine.
Maine (1986) This brief 1986 performance was recorded at an unknown venue in Maine.  Notable for Leo's point that he was awarded an honorary RV dealership.
Night Stage (Cambridge, Massachusetts) This March 13, 1987, performance was recorded at the Night Stage in Cambridge, Massachusetts.  Leo makes some intriguing observations about philosophy, growing old and nasal hair.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania This 1990 performance was recorded at an unknown venue in Philadelphia.  Leo explains the origin of the tune "I Yell At Traffic" and talks briefly about the films Little Treasure and Zeister's, for which he wrote music.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania This April 11, 1985, performance was recorded at an unidentified club in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  One complete show and the beginning of the next set are transcribed here.  There are a couple of very funny bits in this performance, including Leo's opinions about classical music theory, his description of his uncle's funeral, and his commentary about what happened to a movie he scored.
Prairie Home Companion A very brief transcript of a May 1995 performance on Garrison Keillor's Prairie Home Companion radio program.
Raoul's Roadside Attraction (Portland, Maine) This June 19, 1990, performance was recorded live at Raoul's Roadside Attraction in Portland, Maine.  There's an interesting story in here about Leo's father-in-law and Lawrence Welk.
Sessions at West 54th Street This performance was taped for the PBS series Sessions at West 54th Street and was aired on December 20, 1997, along with a segment on singer/bassist Laura Love.
West End Cultural Centre (Winnipeg, Manitoba) This concert was originally broadcast in Canada by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation on a radio program entitled "Hot Ticket."  Unfortunately, the concert date was not included during the broadcast but from the material played the performance must have been in the early 1990s, around the release of That's What.  It includes a hilarious anecdote about Pete Seeger.
Worcester, Massachusetts This May 1973 performance was recorded at an unidentified club in Worcester, Massachusetts and was broadcast on WCW-FM in Worcestor.  There's a funny anecdote in here about a song Leo wrote for his grandfather and also a reference to Leo having one of his tunes ripped off by Pepsi.

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