When MOJO calls to ask music/production great Todd Rundgren about his new live CD/DVD he’s in the middle of hosting his annual summer fan camp – this year billed as Todd Rundgren’s TyRolean Getaway and taking place at the Trapp Family Lodge in rural Vermont. The lodge owners are descended from the von Trapp family whose flight from the Nazis was depicted in The Sound Of Music, and Todd’s event is fittingly themed. “Climb Every Mountain!” runs the promotional bumf. “Ford Every Stream! Flee From Fascist Oppression!” The four-night get-together features cocktails, bingo and live music from Todd and band. A “Guest House Couple Room” will set you back $3,299.00.
Todd’s new release is billed as An Evening With Todd Rundgren – Live At The Ridgefield. Across CD and DVD (or Blu-Ray) there’s a career-spanning set, taking in Nazz, Utopia, soul covers and solo hits such as Bang The Drum All Day, the material being drawn from 1968 up to 2015.
Is there a particular reason why he recorded the album at the Ridgefield Playhouse in Connecticut?
“We tend to work with the same production company when doing live recordings or videos – somebody who has done engineering stuff for me for decades,” Rundgren explains. “He’d done some recordings in this venue and said it was well set up for visuals and the sound is good.”
The release features a substantial, career-spanning set. Did Rundgren deliberate much over which songs to select?
“It’s a concentrated collection of fan favourites.”
“We have a master list of about 50 songs when we’re doing shows,” he says. “Then I come up with a set list of about half of those. Essentially, it’s different every night. There are two reasons for that – the selfish reason is that if we play the same set every night it’s soon going to get pretty automatic and hard to get excited about and the other reason is that I have the kind of audience where a substantial number of them will go to more than one show.”
And what makes Live At The Ridgefield different from A.N. Other Todd Rundgren live album?
“We’ve done lots and lots of live recordings,” Rundgren concedes, “but perhaps the remarkable thing with this release is it’s a concentrated collection of fan favourites, whereas my other [live] recordings may be more localised in time –around a particular record.”
An Evening With Todd Rundgren – Live At The Ridgefield is released on CD/DVD and Blu-ray by Cleopatra Records. For more information...
Enjoy a taster below…