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Category:    Home > Reviews > Rockumentary > Supershow (Rockumentary)

Supershow (Rockumentary)


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: D     Film: B-



I cannot be historically certain that Supershow (1969) really is “the last great jam of the 60s” as the case claims, but it is one of them and its 70-minutes length is jam enough.  Having Jack Bruce, Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy, and Steven Stills does not hurt.  Though Blues and even Jazz are prominent in this long set from two days of playing, Rock is equally represented and that is enough to qualify this as a Rocumentary.  Not that we get interviews, but that is not necessary.  The tracks are, with only some of the artists noted on each track:


1)     For Those About To Die [We] Salute You (a misprint on the case and sleeve?) – Joe Hiseman’s Colosseum

2)     Love Potions – Buddy Miles, Steven Stills co-vocalists, et al

3)     Under The Jasmin Tree – Modern Jazz Quartet

4)     Mary Had A Little Lamb – Buddy Guy on vocals.

5)     Primitive Ohio – Roland Kirk Quartet

6)     Checking On My Baby/Texas Blues – Miles with Glen Campbell on slide guitar

7)     Visitor From Venus – Modern Jazz Quartet

8)     Bad Hat – Glen Campbell with The Misunderstood

9)     Hoochie Coochie Man – Buddy Guy on solo guitar

10)  Debut - Joe Hiseman’s Colosseum

11)  Stormy Window – Buddy Guy/Jack Bruce/Roland Kirk/Jimmy Hope/Ron Burton

12)  Kansas City – same as #11

13)  I Say A Little Prayer (Instrumental) – Roland Kirk Quartet

14)  My Time After A While – Guy/Bruce/Miles

15)  Black Queen – Stills/Miles/Bruce/Dick Heckstall-Smith/Chris Mercer

16)  Slate 27 – Eric Clapton (guitar)/Kirk/Heckstall-     Smith/Bruce/Hiseman/Burton/Vernon Martin

17)  End Jam – Clapton/Guy guitar duo + Stills guitar, et al



The box claims that the picture is 4 X 3/1.33 X 1 full frame, but it is actually letterboxed at 1.75 X 1 and was shot (like all Rockumentaries of the era) in regular 16mm film stock.  The print shows its age, with some weak color here and there, plus some grain that is to be expected from a smaller film frame.  Perhaps this was also conceived for widescreen, unlike the full screen Monterey Pop and Gimme Shelter, as restored from 16mm and issued by Criterion (both reviewed elsewhere eon this site), but it looks consistent and cinematographer Mike Molloy did well considering the formats limitations.


The sound is available in rather weak Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, slightly improved Dolby 2.0 Stereo, and a 5.1 remix that tries boosting the older audio as much as possible.  With that said, the sound has more warped and distorted spots than expected.  No information is given on the sound source, but a worldwide search ought to be done for the best possible audio elements if owner Colourtel expects to reissue this in digital High Definition down the line.  The effort made here for what they had to work with is appreciated, but there are no extras.


This is absolutely about the music and a historical record of a very high-energy concert, when music used to be about music.  These are people serious about music and have an extraordinary amount of talent individually, so you expect some serious synergy bringing them together.  Unlike most lazy pseudo-talents and real talents who have simply given up or sold out today, expectations are met.  That alone is reason enough to give Supershow a look.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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