J Geils Blues Band – New Penelope Club Montreal (1968)

FrontCover1The J. Geils Band was an American rock band formed in 1968, in Worcester, Massachusetts, under the leadership of guitarist John “J.” Geils. The original band members included vocalist Peter Wolf, harmonica and saxophone player Richard “Magic Dick” Salwitz, drummer Stephen Bladd, vocalist/keyboardist Seth Justman, and bassist Danny Klein. Wolf and Justman served as principal songwriters. The band played R&B-influenced blues rock during the 1970s and soon achieved commercial success before moving towards a more mainstream radio-friendly sound in the early 1980s, which brought the band to its commercial peak. After Wolf left the band in 1983 to pursue a solo career, the band released one more album in 1984 with Justman on lead vocals, before breaking up in 1985. Beginning in 1999, the band had several reunions prior to the death of its namesake, J. Geils, on April 11, 2017.

The band first released several Top 40 singles in the early 1970s, including a cover of the song “Lookin’ for a Love” by The Valentinos (which reached #39 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1972), as well as the single “Give It to Me” (#30 in 1973). Their biggest hits included “Must of Got Lost” (#12 in 1975), “Come Back” (#32 in 1980), “Love Stinks” (which reached #38 in 1980 and was featured in several films), “Freeze-Frame” (#4 in 1981), and “Centerfold” (#1 in 1982).

The band started in the mid-1960s while John Geils was attending Worcester Polytechnic Institute for a couple of semesters. Named Snoopy and the Sopwith Camels, the group was an acoustic blues trio with Geils on guitar, bassist Danny Klein (“Dr. Funk”), and harmonica player Richard Salwitz (“Magic Dick”).

Jay Geils with The J. Geils Blues Band, 1967 – The Unicorn Coffee House, 815 Boylston Street, Boston, MA:


In 1968, the band switched focus, going electric and recruiting two fellow musicians from Boston band The Hallucinations, drummer Stephen Bladd and vocalist Peter Blankenfeld, a fast-talking former WBCN disc jockey) with the air name Peter Wolf.[1] Initial influences included James Cotton and Little Walter — in 2008 interview, harmonica star Magic Dick said they were all “harp freaks”.

They became The J. Geils Blues Band, later dropping the word “Blues” from the band name. Soon, fan Seth Justman joined on keyboards and the band started to earn a sizable following in the Boston area.

The band took its time carefully considering various offers of contracts. Unofficial live recordings circulated: as noted in Creem, “WBCN had the infamous J. Geils ‘bathroom tapes’ (that were almost exactly what the name implies) and a tape of their performance at Alternate Media Conference at Goddard College, but these hardly sufficed” to fans who wanted a proper album. The group ultimately signed to Atlantic Records in 1970.

Jay Geils01A

Those of us who know of the J Geils Band only through the early ’80s singles such as Freeze Frame and Centerfold will be in for a surprise. Before they were seen as a pop band, probably adult rock might be a better term, they were such a hardcore blues band that in 1971, The Allman Brothers named the J Geils Band as their favourite local band.

As noted on jgeils.com, Geils himself was a Southside-style slide guitarist who counted not only the Chicago blues masters but also Steve Cropper, Jimi Hendrix, and James Brown’s guitarists among his many influences. Stand-up bassist Danny “D.K.” Klein was also a major soul fan, and harmonica wizard Magic Dick drew heavily from a wide array of blues and jazz musicians, ranging from Little Walter to Roy Eldridge, King Curtis to John Coltrane.


Before joining the band, DJ and singer Peter Wolf recalled: “They were a great band, really smooth. They knew everything there was to know about Chicago blues.” Formed in 1967, the band began to build a reputation in the Boston clubs and when Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf or John Lee Hooker came through town, The J. Geils Blues Band served as their hosts. Along the way, the “Blues” was dropped but there was no shortchanging the music.

As Wolf said, The J. Geils Band “felt obligated to give 100 per cent of ourselves to our audience. We were a bunch of guys who had the passion and wanted to share it.” Keyboardist Seth Justman, who joined the band in 1969, said: “There was a love affair between this band and its audience. We wanted people to know that we were gonna give it all that night… Whatever we had in the tank, that tank was gonna be empty at the end of the show.”


Early J Geils Blues Band recordings are not that common so fans should be thankful to tedders who unearthed this stellar set and shared it on the internet.

While the rhythm section of bassist Danny Klein and drummer Steven Bladd is rock solid, it is harp player Magic Dick Salwitz who takes the spotlight. But then fans of the band will have no problem finding their own favourite moments.

Recorded live at the New Penelope Club, Montreal, Canada, September 1968.
Very good soundboard.


Steven Bladd (drums)
J. Geils (guitar)
Danny Klein (bass)
Pittsfield Slim aka Magic Dick (Dick Salwitz) (harmonica)
Peter Wolf (vocals)

Alternate front+backcover:


1st Set:
01. Dust My Broom (James) 5.31
02. Look Over Yonder (Clark) 5.02
03. Slow Blues Jam (Bladd/Geils/Klein/Salwitz/Wolf) 9.12
04. You Don’t Love Me (Cobb) 6.05
05. Orange Driver (Burns) 6.46
06. Something You Got (Kenner)
07. Smokestack Lightin’ (w/ band into in middle) (Burnett) 13.51
08. Rock Me Baby (King/Josea) 5.33

2nd Set:
01. Blues Instrumental (Bladd/Geils/Klein/Salwitz/Wolf) 5.01
02. Somebody’s Gotta Go (Williams) 3.31
03. Help Me (Williamson)
04. Peter Wolf Intro 0.22
05. Everything’s Gonna Be Alright (Jacobs) 2.58
06. It Hurts Me Too (Whittaker)
07. Black Night (unknown) 5.32
08. Do The Funky Broadway? (w/ band into at end) (Christian) 9.39

Another alternate backcover:


J Geils
John Warren Geils Jr.  (February 20, 1946 – April 11, 2017)

J.Geils – Band – Full House Live (2009)

FrontCover1.jpgThanks to hits such as Centrefold and Freeze Frame and music videos and MTV, younger listeners will remember the J Geils Band as a ’80s pop-rock group. But back in the ’70s, they were a tight R&B outfit whom the Allman Brothers Band considered their favourite local band.

In 1972, the J Geils Band released Live Full House, recorded at the Cinderella Ballroom in Detroit on April 21-22, 1972. One fan noted: “When I was growing up the original Full House was a huge album in Detroit. This was when J Geils were a great R&B band before the MTV hits.”

Thirty-seven years later, the J Geils Band have lost none of their power and excitement and here is a recreated 2009 version of Full House from uncirculated soundboards. And a boogie good time to be had by all.

Thanks To Evil Dr. Louie for sharing the tracks.

Recorded live at The Fillmore, Detroit, MI, April 24-25, 2009
Very good soundboard.


John H. Geils (guitar)
Seth Justman (keyboards, vocals)
Danny Klein (bass)
Marty Richards (drums)
Richard “Magic Dick” Salwitz (harmonica)
Peter Wolf (vocals)
Mitch Chakour (background vocals)


01. First I Look At The Purse (Rogers/Robinson) 4.18
02. Homework (Perkins/Clark/Rush) 4.24
03. Pack Fair & Square (Price) 2.38
04. Whammer Jammer (Juke Joint Jimmy) (*) 4.22
05. Hard Drivin’ Man (Geils/Wolf) 6.31
06. Serves You Right To Suffer (Hooker) 11.28
07. Cruisin’ For A Love (Juke Joint Jimmy) (*) 3.39
08. Looking For A Love (Alexander/Samuels) 6.28

(*) Pseudonym used by The J. Geils Band for group compositions



J. Geils Band – Live – Blow Your Face Out (1976)

FrontCover1Blow Your Face Out is the eighth album (and second live album) by American rock band The J. Geils Band, released in 1976.

The album was recorded at two concerts held in November 1975. The first show was at the Boston Garden in the band’s hometown (Boston, Massachusetts) on November 15th, and recorded by Record Plant East Remote with David Hewitt. The second was recorded by Metro Audio Detroit four nights later at Cobo Hall in Detroit, Michigan, where the band’s other two live albums “Live” Full House (1972) and Showtime! (1982) were also recorded. (by wikipedia)

Double-album live sets came into vogue in 1976 after Peter Frampton’s sales went through the roof for A&M, Bob Seger found fame with Live Bullet on Capitol, and the J. Geils Band released its second in-concert document in four years, Blow Your Face Out. There is great power in these grooves recorded over two nights, November 15 and November 19, at the now deconstructed Boston Garden and in Detroit at Cobo Hall. ConcertFlyer1976Here’s the beautiful dilemma with the Geils band: Live: Full House, recorded in Detroit in April of 1972, contains five songs that became J. Geils standards, and none of them overlap on the 1982 EMI single live disc, Showtime, chock-full of their latter-day classics. Can you believe there is absolutely no overlap from the first or third live album on this double disc, which came in between (except for “Looking for a Love,” uncredited, which they slip into the intro of “Houseparty” on side two)? The Rhino CD contains Jeff Tamarkin’s liner notes, while the original Atlantic album has an exquisite gatefold chock-full of photos, and inner sleeves with priceless band memo stuff à la Grand Funk’s Live Album. Sides one and two are great, and three and four are even better. “Detroit Breakdown” rocks and grooves, with tons of audience applause…Wolfy and the polished authority of his monologues are in command as the band oozes into “Chimes” from 1973’s Ladies Invited. About three and a half minutes longer than the five-minute original, it is one of many highlights on this revealing pair of discs. A precursor to 1977’s title track, “Monkey Island,” “Chimes” gives this enigmatic PromotionAdband a chance to jam out slowly and lovingly over its groove. There is so much to this album: the Janis Joplin standard “Raise Your Hand” written by Eddie Floyd, Albert Collins’ “Sno-Cone” from their first album, and “Truck Drivin’ Man” beating Bachman-Turner Overdrive to the punch. B.B. King producer Bill Szymczyk does a masterful job bringing it all together, and the band photos on back look…roguish. “Must of Got Lost,” “Where Did Our Love Go,” and “Give It to Me” are here in all their glory, a different glory than the studio versions, on an album that should have done for Geils what Live Bullet and Frampton Comes Alive did for their respective artists. If only a legitimate release of their 1999 tour would be issued to stand next to this monster — during that tour they combined the best elements of all three of their previous live discs. The J. Geils Band is more important and influential than the boys have been given credit for. It will be the live documents that ensure they eventually get their due, and Blow Your Face Out is a very worthy component that can still frazzle speakers. (by Joe Viglione)

A hell of a record … one of the finest live-albums ever !


Stephen Bladd (drums)
Magic Dick (harmonica)
J. Geils (guitar)
Seth Justman (keyboards)
Danny Klein (bass)
Peter Wolf (vocals)


01. Southside Shuffle (Justman/Wolf) 4.18
02. Back To Get Ya (Justman/Wolf) 4.36
03. Shoot Your Shot (Walker/Graves/Horn) 3.48
04. Must Of Got Lost (Justman/Wolf) 6.34
05. Where Did Our Love Go (B.Holland/Dozier/E.Holland) 3.51
06. Truck Drivin’ Man (Fell) 1.51
07. Love-Itis (Scales/Vance) 4.07
08. Lookin’ For A Love (Alexander/Samuels) +  Ain’t Nothin’ But A Houseparty (Sharh/Thomas) 7.04
09. So Sharp (Christian) + Detroit Breakdown (Justman/Wolf) 8.11
10. Detroit Breakdown (Reprise) (Justman/Wolf) 0.33
11. Chimes (Justman/Wolf) 8.54
12. Sno-Cone (Collins) 3.07
13. Wait (Justman/Wolf) 3.29
14. Raise Your Hand (Cropper/Floyd/Isbell) 4.13
15. Start All Over + Give It To Me (Justman/Wolf) 8.38
16. Blow Your Face Out (uncut version) 1.14.49






J. Geils Band – The Morning After (1971)

LPFrontCover1The Morning After is a near perfect follow-up to the J. Geils Band’s self-titled debut album. It’s more of the same winning blend of rocked-out blues, jumped-up soul, and pure rock & roll wildness with enough attitude and energy to get a club full of people from zero to sweaty in less than 60 seconds.

Featuring the original versions of songs that became radio staples in their live incarnations (“Looking for a Love,” the Magic Dick showcase “Whammer Jammer”), a batch of covers of rare soul gems (“So Sharp,” Don Covay’s “The Usual Place,” the aforementioned “Looking for a Love”), and some fine originals (the rip-roaring opener “I Don’t Need You No More,” the very funky “Gotta Have Your Love,” and the heart-rending ballad “Cry One More Time,” which was covered memorably by Gram Parsons on G.P.),

The Morning After is definite proof that the J. Geils Band were well on their way to becoming one of the best rock & roll bands of any era. (by Tim Sendra)

And I forgot how fucking good this album is !


Stephen Bladd (drums)
Magic Dick (harmonica)
J. Geils (guitar)
Seth Justman (keyboards)
Danny Klein (bass)
Peter Wolf (vocals)


01. I Don’t Need You No More (Wolf/Justman) 2.37
02. Whammer Jammer (Jimmy) 2.38
03. So Sharp (Christian) 3.11
04. The Usual Place (Covay/Randolph) 2.46
05. Gotta Have Your Love (Wolf/Justman) 4.33
06. Looking For A Love (Alexander/Samuels) 3.47
07. Gonna Find Me A New Love (Wolf/Justman) 3.25
08. Cry One More Time (Wolf/Justman) 3.23
09. Floyd’s Hotel (Wolf/Justman) 3.12
10. It Ain’t What You Do (It’s How You Do It!) (Jimmy) 5.12





J. Geils Band – Reunion In Detroit (2009)

FrontCover1Guitarist J Geils, born John Warren Geils Jr., has died on April 11, 2017. He was 71. WCVB-TV Boston reported that Geils was found dead in his Groton, Massachusetts, home. He had lived in the town for 35 years. According to the Boston Globe, Groton Police Chief Donald Palma wrote in an email to the paper: “He has passed.” Cause of death has not been established. Geils formed The J Geils Band in 1967. They had 15 charting albums on the Billboard 200, including Freeze-Frame, which spent four weeks atop the list in 1982 and finished at No. 5 on Billboard’s year-end Top Pop Albums chart (while “Centerfold” was the year’s No. 5 Top Pop Single). In 2012, The J. Geils Band toured without Geils’ involvement, leading the founding guitarist to file an unsuccessful lawsuit against group members Richard Salwitz, Danny Klein, Peter Wolf and Seth Justman over use of the band’s name for a tour without him. Geils left the band permanently following this incident. (by Billboard)

.And here´s my tribute to J.Geils
Such was their fanbase in Detroit that tickets for the shows were sold out in 15 minutes. While the J Geils Band might be Boston-based, Detroit is seen by (Detroit) fans as a home away from home. After all, they recorded the Full House live album in the Motor City, as well as Blow Your Face Out and Showtime. And don’t forget their reunion show on New Year’s Eve 1999.

Recorded live at The Fillmore, Detroit, MI, April 25, 2009,
second show. Very good soundboard

As one fan said: “This show ROCKS!”


J Geils (guitar)
Magic Dick (harmonica)
Seth Justman (keyboards)
Danny Klein (bass)
Duke Levine (guitar)
Marty Richards (drums)
Peter Wolf (vocals)
Kid Rock (vocals on CD 2/11.)



CD 1:
01. First I Look At The Purse (Robinson/Rogers) 4.18
02. Homework (Perkins/Clark/Rush) 6.11
03. Hard Drivin’ Man (Wolf/Geils) 6.44
04. Pack, Fair, And Square (Price) 2.32
05. Sanctuary (Justman/Wolf) 3.57
06. Night Time (Goldstein/Gottehrer/Feldman/Justman) 7.24
07. Cruisin’ For A Love (Jimmy) 4.27
08. So Sharp (Christian) 2.36
09. Detroit Breakdown (Justman/Wolf)  8.44
10. Serves You Right To Suffer (Hooker) 11.12
11. Give It To Me (Justman/Wolf) 11.43
12. Must Of Got Lost (Justman/Wolf) 4.29

CD 2:
01. Love Stinks  (Justman/Wolf) 2.50
02. Lookin’ For A Love (Alexander/Samuels) 5.39
03. Whammer Jammer (Jimmy) 2.39
04. (Ain’t Nothin’ But A) Houseparty (Sharp/Thomas) 5.54
05. Just Can’t Wait (Justman/Wolf) 3.34
06. Freeze Frame (Justman/Wolf) 3.54
07. Start All Over Again (Justman/Wolf) 3.09
08. Where Did Our Love Go (Holland/Dozier/Holland) 4.08
09. Thank you Detroit 2:18
10. Peachtree Street 2:23
11. Centerfold (Justman) 3.37
12. Love-Itis (Scales/Vance) 5.15
John Warren Geils (February 20, 1946 – April 11, 2017) 
RIP  … and thanks a lot !