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Legendary Port Chester: Johnny Winter, Nov. 27 1970

This week, we revisit another place in Port Chester's sonic history, with the aid of a live album and a heavy dose of Chuck Berry.

Most Legendary Port Chester columns revisit classic shows that have survived three or four decades of history through memories and dusty artifacts – worn ticket stubs, creased concert fliers and scratchy old bootlegs.

But some shows were preservity with clarity and an official stamp, like David Bowie's Capitol Theatre gig under the glare of lights and MTV cameras.

Live Johnny Winter And is one of those official examples – a year after playing the Capitol, Winter combined a handful of live performances from his Port Chester show with a few from a Florida gig, and a live album was born.

Fans who bought tickets to Johnny Winter's performance on that chilly night in 1970 got a taste of the famous singer-guitarist's well-rounded repertoire, plus the satisfaction of saying "I was there!" when  Live Johnny And was released in May 1971.

Tracks from the set-list that later appeared on the album include "Jumpin-Jack Flash," "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin On," (Jerry Lee Lewis, 1957) and "Long-Tall Sally." (Originally recorded by Little Richard, 1956.)

Later in the night, Winter and Rick Derringer settled down from blazing riffs to more traditional Texas blues, trading screaming tubes for twangy, reverb-heavy tones in "Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo."

Enjoying his newfound success – which included the largest record deal advance ever at the time – Winter performed "Mean Town Blues, a throwback to his debut 1968 album, The Progressive Blues Experiment.

But Winter wasn't done paying homage to his roots. With the gain turned back up and the rhythm section charging along, Winter signed off in Port Chester with a nod to the man who made his style possible.


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