Recorded in November 1975, Greatest Stories Live
showcases the legendary live performance styles of acoustic troubadour and noted activist Harry Chapin
. Recorded over three nights on-stage in California, the double-LP set features all the hits as well as a few notable album cuts that put the musician's musical and personal skills out on the line for all to see. There are the obvious inclusions of touching hits, like "W*O*L*D," "Taxi," and of course the father-son anthem "Cats in the Cradle." "Mr. Tanner" and the heartfelt "I Wanna Learn a Love Song" also come across great in the live environment, a setting that was clearly the singer/songwriter's forte. Chapin
has a fantastic rapport with the audience throughout the set, and it comes through with incredible results on his humorous banter before and during the rousing and set-highlighting "30,000 Pounds of Bananas," a great track about Scranton, PA, and a runaway fruit truck. Sure it may sound a little hokey, but Chapin
is a true showman and the fun he has on-stage transfers directly into the joy of listening to the record. A fine musician and individual, Chapin
's Greatest Stories Live
comes close to living up to its name and is a fitting document of a man whose boundless joy and insight shined through in his music.