Rick James – Super Freak Live in Concert in Germany 1982 + RECAP

Rick James was one of the most important singers, bandleaders, songwriters and musicians of our time.  This documentary, which was released in 2005, illustrates his virtuosity as a performer.   Enjoy it even if you are not staying in on a Friday night.


This concert film was shot in Essen, Germany on Rick’s first tour of Europe; right before his career took a serious nose-dive. It is no secret that James, who died in 2004, was fond of dissipation and the drugs and drink would very shortly take their toll on his music. Ironically, this film opens with James backstage, taking hefty swigs off what appears to be a bottle of Courvoisier while waiting for his Stone City Band to finish their intro. The high points of the first half of the show are his early hit, “Love Gun” and a portion of “Call Me Up” where James blows some blues harp and trades licks with Stone City guitarist Tom McDermott. James takes a break from the funk to croon the soulful ballad “Big Day” then revs things back up to close out the show with his biggest hits, starting with “Mary Jane” and ending with “Super Freak.” There is a funny spot in the intro to “Mary Jane” where James yells to the crowd, “Who’s here from Essen?” The crowd, not understanding English, doesn’t respond, so James shouts “Who’s here from Frankfurt?” obviously thinking that he had shouted out the wrong city name. This concert is not particularly stunning, but it is a good record of the times.

Editorial Review from Amazon.com:

R&B legend Rick James was one of the most influential black musicians of all time. As an artist, songwriter and producer, James provided the funky hits that resuscitated Motown Records in the late ‘70s. His Punk Funk sound updated the label’s style and saw it through the mid-’80s. By 1981, Rick was at the peak of his commercial success with the platinum selling Street Songs album and the hit singles “Super Freak” and “Give It to Me Baby.”

The following year, Rick James & the Stone City Band took the stage in Essen, Germany to open the 10th Rockpalast-Festival. This 1982 performance was the first time James played in Europe, bringing his brand of American Punk Funk to a whole new audience. Together with the Stone City Band, James did not disappoint, burning up the stage with his trademark sound and special effects.

Now for the first-time, this classic performance is available on DVD. Featuring classic hits like “You and I,” “Mary Jane,” and of course, “Super Freak,” this is Rick James at his very best. Super Freak 1982 is not only a must-have collectors item but also a fitting tribute to an R&B legend.

Track Listing:
1. Intro
2. Ghetto Life
3. Big Time
4. All Day All Night
5. Freaky
6. Fire It Up
7. Love Gun
8. Guitar Solo
9. Harp Bolo (Call Me Up)
10. Big Day
11. Standing On The Top
12. Mary Jane
13. Mary Jane March
14. You and I
15. Give It To Me Baby
16. Super Freak

Alternate link to full concert

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