Linda Ronstadt’s extraordinary genre-hopping career encompassed more than two dozen studio LPs and several greatest-hits compilations but one format that had been missing from her discography until now was a live album. On February 1st, Rhino will issue Live in Hollywood, featuring 12 performances handpicked by Ronstadt from a 1980 concert originally filmed for HBO.
Recorded at Hollywood’s Television Center Studios on April 24th, 1980, to coincide with the release of Ronstadt’s underappreciated Mad Love LP, Live in Hollywood includes a mix of rock, pop and country tunes the singer both charted with and included on her albums up to that point, closing with her version of the Eagles’ “Desperado,” which she not only helped popularize but which also became a later country hit for Johnny Rodriguez and was covered by Clint Black in 1993. The set also includes “Poor Poor Pitiful Me,” a Warren Zevon cover that was a minor country hit for Ronstadt and a Top Five entry for Terri Clark. Of the 12 cuts, only “Poor Poor Pitiful Me” and the Buddy Holly cover “It’s So Easy” have been previously available.
The album owes its release to serendipitous circumstances, according to producer John Boylan. Although HBO, Ronstadt and her record label, Warner Bros., were initially unable to locate the master tapes, Boylan ultimately tracked them down because of a conversation he had with a Warner Bros. audio engineer at their sons’ hockey practice. “I have no way of calculating the odds of finding the lost tapes through a chance encounter at a hockey practice, but they must be astronomical — like winning the lottery,” Boylan writes in the LP’s liner notes. “And in this case of remarkable serendipity, every Linda Ronstadt fan is a lottery winner.”
The previously unreleased “Just One Look” is now available for streaming. Live in Hollywood will be issued February 1st on CD and vinyl and will also be available through digital and streaming services that day.
Live in Hollywood track listing:
- “I Can’t Let Go”
- “It’s So Easy”
- “Just One Look”
- “Blue Bayou”
- “Faithless Love”
- “Hurt So Bad”
- “Poor Poor Pitiful Me”
- “You’re No Good”
- “How Do I Make You”
- “Back in the U.S.A.”