"This was the first Donna Summer album I acquired back in '78; The music, while a faint-bit dated, has aged quite well. For anyone who purchases the c.d. release will be greatly disappointed by the deletion of MacArthur Park Suite. It is ironic since MacArthur Park was Summer's FIRST #1 single to hit the U.S. pop chart and fans would buy the double album for that 18 minute track/suite(the "More" part of the album)! True, the lyrics which were once performed previously by Actor Richard Harris back in the 60's, are either cryptic or corny (or both)to some. Yet, Summer's cover version was tastefully done with colorful orchestra/symphonic intstruments and electric guitars; This sounded pretty good without having a tacky symphonic,synthesized disco-feel of the era. Also, her vocals were astounding. Donna can sing any corny lyrics and yet put a lot of passion and depth behind them (sing-the-phone-book theory). The only way to complete the Live and More c.d. is to purchase another Summer compilation entitled The Dance Collection which will contain the original full length MacArthur Park Suite as originally released on the double record album. Otherwise, the c.d release has a track from a 1977 movie-thriller called The Deep (Deep, Deep, Down Inside). I think Ms. Summer probably cringes as well when remembering doing this campy disco-tune for the soundtrack. The vocals sound as though they were coming out of a megaphone or old victrola.
The second deletion is the original photo cover as released on the album of Donna's famous headshot as she is holding the microphone with her head tilted back and eyes closed. Now, I realize why some music collectors miss the original album releases from back in the days of vinyl; The c.d. s are convenient, but the l.p.s had great artwork, photos and other cover details not re-issued on c.d.s !
As for the Live side, side one borrows heavily from her Once Upon A Time album tracks; The live tracks and vocals are actually better sounding and more dramatic since she drops her studio falsetto and has an actual live crowd applauding and cheering as each new track begins. The only slight drawback, as one previous reviewer stated, is that the speed or tempo is a little rushed for the first 6 tracks. I remember thinking that maybe the pitch on the turntable was incorrect.
Aside from the technical negatives, this is the definitive beginner's Donna Summer album for even young or new listener's. Remember, she was here before Maria or Whitney !"
Live and More is really Live and Less
RJM Music Man | Philadelphia, Pa | 04/26/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"With the deletion of MacArthur Park Suite, a 17 minute masterpiece, this CD is not worth purchasing. If you can get a hold of the original vinyl 2lp set you'll know what I mean. Why would any record company remove the gem of this release? Just think - someone consciously made that decision.
This misleading CD is not the original vinyl album version!!
PJ | Ontario, Canada | 11/01/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Having owned the original vinyl album, this CD is missing the all important 18 minute studio recording of the "MacArthur Park Suite". Even though there is a disclaimer in fine print on the inside jacket explaining why the "Suite" had to be removed and replaced with a numbing slow-tempo track, the record company was wrong in releasing this CD with the original jacket cover from the vinyl. Without opening the jewel box plastic wrapping, one would never know why the original live and studio recorded tracks were not faithfully reproduced.However, in my opinion, this CD contains the greatest live disco recording ever: on a scale similar to Peter Frampton's "Frampton Comes Alive" 1976 album.If this CD was a true reproduction of the vinyl, I would have rated it 5 out of 5 stars."
Proof and More, that Donna's a Superstar
KRA | East End of LI | 09/15/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"OK OK, first things first, the CD of Live and More DOES NOT contain the MacArthur Park Suite, AND the cover shot is not the famous picture of Donna with the moon in the background.
HOWEVER, the full MacArthur Park Suite is featured on a number of other CD's (The Dance Collection, The Casablanca Records Story), and the famous cover shot is used on the newer compilation The Journey.
Live and More as released just as Donna was coming off the spin of her mega hit Last Dance, and she was finally starting to be taken as they multi talented artist that she is. For whatever reason the music community still seemed to feel that Disco was a producers genre, and the singers were only puppets.
With Live and More, Donna showed the world she can deliver the goods. Her early hits are here (Try Me.., Love To Love You, I Feel Love and Spring Affair), a 5 songs run from her then new album Once Upon A Time is also featured. However it was her depature from Disco that really made this release shine. The My Man Medley, combining, The Man I Love, I Got It Bad, and Some of These Days, showed her diversity, and remains a concert favorite to this day. Her cover of The Way We Were, showed how she could custom any song to her unique vocal range, and as you can tell from the crowds reaction she was well on her way to Pop Superstardom with Last Dance.
The crown of this excellent live set to me is Mimi's Song. To many Donna was the Queen of Disco, but to her her most important role was Mommy, and while you can easily get the impression from some stars that their children are almost window dressing, Donna made it clear where her priorities were, and gave us a great ballad in the process.
On this CD release the "& More" side is the Theme from the Movie The Deep, (Down Deep Inside), this track was produced by John Barry, and was one of the few Casablanca era works not produced by Giorgio or Pete.
Some excellent songs not available elsewhere
PJ | 06/16/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I recommend this disc because it contains songs not available elsewhere. I really liked the first side of the second disc of the original vinyl album, which begins at track 10 here. As to the rushed pace a previous reviewer noted, I think that what you are hearing is Donna's dislike of performing these songs at that time. I remember going to see her in concert in the summer of 1979 and she was on stage all of 40 minutes or so. Each song was stripped down to about 2 and a half minutes (as on this recording). The tempos were increased and verses were omitted. I remember being happy that I went to the concert anyway but disappointed that it was so brief.As others have pointed out, this cd edition omits the long version of "MacArthur Park" (available elsewhere on cd) and instead includes "Theme From the Deep", which I don't believe is available elsewhere. While I ordinarily don't like such alterations, it is nice to have both songs available on cd, and any Donna fan will probably have another disc with the full length "MacArthur Park" anyway."