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07 April 2021

Chicago Reveal New, Expanded Edition Of ‘Chicago At Carnegie Hall’

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Chicago have announced they will be releasing Chicago At Carnegie Hall Complete an expanded version of their best-selling live album which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.

Chicago became the first non-classical group to perform six nights in a row at Carnegie Hall 50 years ago. Between 5-10 April, 1971, the band played eight shows at the celebrated venue (including two matinees) and recorded every one of them. In October of that year, performance highlights were featured on the band’s first-ever live album, Chicago at Carnegie Hall. That 4LP set reached No 3 on the Billboard 200, was certified platinum, and is still the band’s best-selling live album.

To honor the 50th anniversary of Chicago’s historic concerts, the band will release all eight Carnegie Hall shows in their entirety for the first time in a new 16CD deluxe box set. The collection will feature all the shows as well as three replica posters that were included in the original as well as excerpts from the concert programme and more.

Chicago founding member and trumpeter Lee Loughnane and engineer Tim Jessup spent nearly a year meticulously going through more than 40 concert tapes at Loughnane’s new studio in Arizona to remaster each concert. Their hard work paid off with eight fantastic-sounding shows.

The collection is presented in a white folio that’s embossed with the group’s trademark logo. The set beautifully commemorates the event through memorabilia that includes replicas of the three posters that accompanied the original vinyl release and images of the original concert programme, tickets, and other memorabilia from the historic run. The collection also comes with a 28-page booklet illustrated with photos from the concerts, plus new sleevenotes with contributions by Loughnane; archivist Jeff Magid, writer/producer David Wild and comedy icon/Chicago fanatic Jimmy Pardo.

When Chicago arrived in New York City in April 1971 to play eight shows at Carnegie Hall, they were at the peak of its early experimental period and riding high on the success of the group’s third consecutive platinum album, Chicago III. For these historic shows the band played a cross-section of hits from their first three studio albums, including Beginnings, Questions 67 and 68, Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? and 25 or 6 to 4. The set also includes the previously unheard first songs from the first show, Someday (August 29, 1968).

The performances showcase memorable contributions from every band member, including Terry Kath’s stellar guitar work, heartfelt vocals by Kath, Robert Lamm, and Peter Cetera, the vibrant horn work by Loughnane, James Pankow, and Walt Parazaider, as well as the jazz-influenced drumming of Danny Seraphine.

Chicago, known as the “rock band with horns,” is one of the longest-running and best-selling groups of all time. They are the first American band to ever chart albums in Billboard’s Pop Top 40 in six consecutive decades, the highest charting American band in Billboard’s Hot 100 All-Time Top Artists, and the No 4 band on Billboard’s All-Time Top Bands and Duos list.

The group’s extensive accomplishments include: two Grammy Awards and a Lifetime Achievement Award from The Recording Academy, multiple American Music Awards, 11 No 1 singles, five consecutive No 1 albums, and record sales in excess of 100,000,000, with 47 albums earning gold and platinum certification.

Chicago were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2016, and Chicago’s first album, Chicago Transit Authority, was inducted into the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame in 2014. In 2017, the Songwriters Hall of Fame inducted songwriters Robert Lamm (25 or 6 to 4, Saturday In The Park) and James Pankow (Feelin’ Stronger Every Day, Make Me Smile).

The band’s deluxe set, Chicago At Carnegie Hall Complete is available for pre-order from the Dig! store here and will be officially available on 16th July.