Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Specials: Live at The Lyceum

A radio-only promo L.P. of a non-stop Specials (more here) show from 1979. As a live band it's almost impossible to believe how much of a whirlwind The Specials were. Watch their relentless energy and tight-ass playing when they visited Saturday Night Live and shake your head at the rampant cultural idiocy of late seventies North America.

As a bonus, perhaps only for this listener, is that you get to hear the rip-snortin' "Do the Dog" with those toasts ("Do The daaawg, not the DON-KEY!") as background vocals and rather than as the loudest part of the song, as they are on the studio version. Plus you get another fabulous take on the band's nod-to-their-roots, "Skinhead Symphony".

(Thanks to the amazing
2-Tone.info for the images + info .)

Live at The Lyceum link is in the comments

Speaking of comments, what's your favourite Specials tune?

Support the band!






  1. .

    .................. the


  2. Amazing post mate! I`ve been looking for this lp for years.

  3. my favourite specials track has got to be guns of navarone.yes i know its a cover version but their version on the too much too young e.p is a belter.it never fails to get me dancing(i use that term loosely of course!)i even managed to sneak it onto the playlist at my wedding a few years ago which was funny watching peoples reaction when that started.i saw the specials 3 times on their tour last year and was gutted when they didnt play it at any of these gigs.im going to see them again at alexandra palace in november and if the stories about it being their last ever show are true then i really really hope they play this one and i could die a happy man.cheers jeffen!

  4. Hey all.

    Fist, thanks for this great post and the quality of your documentation. One of my fav blogs.

    I thought about my best Specials song telling myself what a stupid question. I love bands more for their way through creation, I mean, we love (or stop to love) bands for their own evolution (or not). I love Specials from The Coventry Automatics to the Special AKA, and even the Fun Boy Three, apreciating all aspects of their music...

    But after some time, I realize it not so stupid. It was an interesting choice to make : what makes us love a song more than others ?

    To make it short (i'm tryin'), is it the one you knew the band from, or a hit, or a rarity, or a memory..?

    In fact my fav is Concrete Jungle, as it represents for me the perfect mix between the two sides of the coin, or is it the two tones ? Punk Rock energy with bass culture at the peak of their fusion.

    I think I would put on nr 2, Gangsters. I find the reference to Bernie Rhodes exhilarating added to the music itself and last but not least, the sound, wich was so fresh between... Joy Division and Killing Joke (at that time).

    My 3rd choice would be Man at C&A, for the well rendered climate of the nuclear attack, same kind os sense of emergency as in London Calling...

    If your interested by the subject, I've got a Blog called CultureClash77 Babylon Meets Electric Dread Downtown. (in french, but lotta vids & sounds)


  5. Thanks for the Specials.
    1979 was a good year for them.

    Best wishes from Sweden

  6. Thanks for your work here - and the specials special.

  7. Awesome. That's all there is to it.

  8. YAY!!! More Specials!!!


  9. I'm writing because you commented that comments keep the series going. That and cash.


  10. Thank you, I am really enjoying the Specials stuff. They still occupy a warm place in my heart.

  11. My favorite song should be do nothing but there's so many.
    Let says do nothing was really a walkman classic of my teenage, this song keep following me through the ages and often just comes in the right moment.

    When i first listened to the album i remembered the shock of do the dog getting me crazy, but ghost down, blank expression, sock it to em jb, there's so many.

    Actually the live DVD of the 30 year anniversary is good, i'm gonna see them for the first time in .... September

  12. Love it! Thanks so much for all this great 2-Tone material- what a great label...I love everything on 2-Tone. The Specials ruled!

  13. Do Nothing. What a track. Thanks to MRML for some consistent great stuff. All the best, Jon

  14. Your blog is unbelievable. Keep up the good work man!


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