The Stunning Differences Between Studio Versions and Live Classics
Concert albums became quite popular in the mid 1970s with many bands' biggest hits recorded at shows right here in the Midwest.
Live recordings were more energized and spontaneous, making some of the original studio recordings sound quaint by comparison.
In fact, some studio versions of these songs failed to impress fans at all, but the live takes became classics.
Here are the stories behind the studio versions of five major classic rock songs that sound very different than their more popular live renditions.
KISS had to know they had a legitimate hit with "Rock and Roll All Nite". But the studio version stalled at #68 on the Billboard chart when it was released in April 1975. Just over one year later, the newly-recorded live version from KISS ALIVE soared to #12 and gave the band their breakthrough hit.
Peter Frampton left Humble Pie in the early 1970s, and went on to quickly record four solo studio albums in rapid succession. It was the songs on his 1975 self-titled album "Frampton" that would help launch the live tour that created his blockbuster "Comes Alive" album in 1976.
Bob Seger's autobiographical "Turn The Page" sounds even more sad and lonely on the studio recording than the concert rendition from "Live Bullet". His road manager said Bob and the band were at a truck stop in Dubuque, Iowa when they heard other customers making rude jokes about their long hair.
REO Speedwagon Singer Kevin Cronin had recorded the song but then left the group before the album was complete. SO the band recruited Mike Murphy for vocals on the original Ridin' the Storm Out". A great song, but REO wouldn't hit it big until Cronin returned to the band, after this song had been released. Kevin's original vocal of the song surfaced years later as a bonus track on an REO Speedwagon CD Box Set.
Cheap Trick found a more receptive audience overseas than they did in the US, but fans in the states finally caught on following the release of Live in Budokan. The studio version almost sounds like a different band, it comes across more like a fluffy pop song than the crunchy rocker that we all know from the live album.