Rory Gallagher / Brilliantly collated boxset, plus major exhibition news

25 August 2021

Twenty-six years after his passing, the thirst for new Rory Gallagher product is still as great as ever, and this latest offering is as quenching as they come.

Rory Gallagher – Rory Gallagher 50th Anniversary Edition (UMC)

Release Date: 3 September 2021

Words: Brian Boyle

On 23 May 1971, the legendary blues-rock guitarist announced his arrival in the solo arena with the release of his self-titled debut album. As with the previous band Taste, Gallagher stuck with the power trio format after Gerry McEvoy and Wilgar Campbell beat heavyweight names like Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding to the two jobs in the engine room.

So to mark its 50th anniversary, a multi-format box set will be released, including a never before seen concert recorded for French television entitled Pop Deux.

Rory Gallagher boxset

Jewel in the crown

But the real jewel in the crown is the monstrous 52 audio tracks ram-packed with alternate takes and live tracks, notably half a dozen songs recorded on the BBC Radio John Peel Sunday Concert and four from Abbey Road Studios on Sounds Of The Seventies. So if you’re a regular spinner of the aged-well debut, your instincts might demand you jump headfirst into the mountain of newly released extras, and why not.

Four juicy stabs of 1975’s At The Bottom will delight, especially as you feel like you’re right there in the studio with him. A barebacked version of album opener Laundromat is neat and tidy for a run through and a great foil for the original.

More multipacks of Hand’s Up and Sinner Boy may seem like needless force-feeding, but Gallagher fans are a dedicated lot and are sure to get something precious out of the nine versions between these two songs.

Rory Gallagher.
Rory Gallagher. Photo: Barrie Wentzell

But unearthed studio rarities aside, it’s the live inclusions that will genuinely get your blues-rock juices flowing. The accompanying Pop Deux DVD sees a fresh-faced Gallagher looking comfortable going it alone performing his first solo concert in front of an absorbed looking French audience.

The 1971 sessions at the BBC boast an extra bit of zip with the famed acoustics of Abbey Road Studios providing fluent deliveries on For The Last Time and I Fall Apart.

A boisterous audience on the John Peel Sunday Concert got the in your face treatment with Hand’s Up and It Takes Time dripping in blues guitar authenticity.

A fantastic slab of music, brilliantly collated and, if you needed reminding, fresh evidence as to why Jimi Hendrix branded him the greatest guitar player in the world.

To pre-order the boxset, visit https://rorygallagher.lnk.to/50thAnniversary

Archive photos from 1971, courtesy of British rock photographer Barrie Wentzell.


Rory Gallagher was recently voted Ireland’s Greatest Music Artist by Dublin’s national independent radio station, Newstalk. Rory topped the list, beating U2, Thin Lizzy, Van Morrison and Christy Moore.

On Thursday August 26th, The Museum of Reading will launch a major exhibition entitled The 1971 Reading Festival: For the First Time. The exhibition takes its title from Rory Gallagher’s 1971 song, For the Last Time.

Through the generous support of the Rory Gallagher Estate, various items from Rory’s archive will be presented for the first time in a UK public museum, including Rory’s 1966 Fender Telecaster, his Vox AC30 amplifier and other items that Rory played at the festival 50 years ago.

Curated by rock photographer Jill Furmanovsky, the exhibition tells the story of the first Reading Festival through rare and unseen photographs, posters, ephemera, and rock memorabilia, celebrating 50 years of The Reading Festival.

Gallagher is still considered to have performed one of the most remarkable sets at the historic Reading Festival when it first launched 50 years ago in the summer of 1971.

For further info about the exhibition, visit https://media.reading.gov.uk/news/new-exhibition-at-reading-museum-celebrates-reading-festivals-50th-anniversary

CD1
Laundromat – 50th Anniversary Edition
Just The Smile – 50th Anniversary Edition
I Fall Apart – 50th Anniversary Edition
Wave Myself Goodbye – 50th Anniversary Edition
Hands Up – 50th Anniversary Edition
Sinner Boy – 50th Anniversary Edition
For The Last Time – 50th Anniversary Edition
It’s You – 50th Anniversary Edition
I’m Not Surprised – 50th Anniversary Edition
Can’t Believe It’s True – 50th Anniversary Edition

CD2
Gypsy Woman – Tangerine Studio Session
It Takes Time – Tangerine Studio Session
I Fall Apart – Tangerine Studio Session
Wave Myself Goodbye – Tangerine Studio Session
At The Bottom – Alternate Take 1
At The Bottom – Alternate Take 2
At The Bottom – Alternate Take 3
At The Bottom – Alternate Take 4
Advision Jam
Laundromat – Alternate Take 1
Just The Smile – Alternate Take 1
Just The Smile – Alternate Take 2
I Fall Apart – Alternate Take 1
Wave Myself Goodbye – Alternate Take 1
Wave Myself Goodbye – Alternate Take 2

CD3
Hands Up – Alternate Take 1
Hands Up – Alternate Take 2
Hands Up – Alternate Take 3
Hands Up – Alternate Take 4
Hands Up – Alternate Take 5
Hands Up – Alternate Take 6
Sinner Boy – Alternate Take 1
Sinner Boy – Alternate Take 2
Sinner Boy – Alternate Take 3
For The Last Time – Alternate Take 1
For The Last Time – Alternate Take 2
For The Last Time – Alternate Take 3
It’s You – Alternate Take 1
It’s You – Alternate Take 2
I’m Not Surprised – Alternate Take 1
I’m Not Surprised – Alternate Take 2
Can’t Believe It’s True – Alternate Take 1

CD4
For The Last Time – Live On BBC “Sounds Of The Seventies” / 1971*
Laundromat – Live On BBC “Sounds Of The Seventies” / 1971*
It Takes Time – Live On BBC “Sounds Of The Seventies” / 1971*
I Fall Apart – Live On BBC “Sounds Of The Seventies” / 1971*
Hands Up – Live On BBC “John Peel Sunday Concert” / 1971
For The Last Time – Live On BBC “John Peel Sunday Concert” / 1971
In Your Town – Live On BBC “John Peel Sunday Concert” / 1971
Just The Smile – Live On BBC “John Peel Sunday Concert” / 1971
Laundromat – Live On BBC “John Peel Sunday Concert” / 1971
It Takes Time – Live On BBC “John Peel Sunday Concert” / 1971
* Off air recording

DVD

Interview
Hands Up
Wave Myself Goodbye
It Takes Time
Sinner Boy
For the Last Time
The Same Thing
I Fall Apart

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