So, this is Dean Sciarra’s favourite Fairport Convention album. At first sight, that does look a bit odd, but I can see why he should have that view. After all, the only Fairport Convention album that makes it into my personal top ten is “Nine”.
So, what is so special about this one? In the first place, it is the only true recording which exists of the 1974 line-up of the group. Admittedly, the only change in 1975 was of the drummer, but that is a difference of some significance when it is Dave Mattacks who left.
It will be recalled that “Fairport Live Convention” is really by the “Nine” line up, with Sandy Denny just guesting as a sort of afterthought. By the time of the Ebbets Field gigs, she had become a fully paid up member of the band. So, what we have, uniquely, is the incomparable “Nine” group plus the incomparable Sandy Denny!
Moreover, the sound quality is superb, no mean feat as Dean Sciarra’s notes make clear.
It is in fact a truly excellent and very precious gem. However, it is not perfect. This is the track listing:
2. “Hexamshire Lass”
3. “John The Gun”
5. “Dirty Linen”
6. “Who Knows Where The Time Goes”
8. “It’ll Take A Long Time”
9. “Matty Groves”
10. “The Medley”
11. “Down In The Flood”
More of the music next time.