Guitars101 - Guitar Forums banner

The Who * 1980-06-20 * The Forum * Inglewood, CA * Mike Millard Master Tapes via JEMS Vol. 95 * 16/44 and 24/96 Editions

1939 Views 12 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  bcking1958
Clothing Jeans Trousers Muscle Entertainment

Musical instrument Drum Membranophone Band plays Musician

The Who
The Forum
Inglewood, CA
June 20, 1980
Mike Millard Master Tapes via JEMS
The Lost and Found Mike the MICrophone Tapes Volume 95

1644 and 2496 Editions

Recording Gear:
AKG 451E Microphones (CK-1 cardioid capsules) > Nakamichi 550 Cassette Recorder

JEMS 2021 Transfer: Mike Millard Master Cassettes > Nakamichi CR-7A (azimuth adjustment; Dolby On) > Sound Devices USBPre 2 > Audacity 2.0 capture > iZotope RX8 > iZotope Ozone 8 > Peak Pro (post production) (> 16/44 - only 16-bit edition, of course...) > Audacity > TLH > FLAC

01 Behind Blue Eyes
02 Dreaming From The Waist
03 Drowned
04 Who Are You
05 5:15
06 Pinball Wizard
07 My Generation
08 I Can See For Miles
09 Sparks
10 See Me, Feel Me
11 Won't Get Fooled Again
12 Young Man Blues
13 Dancing In The Street
14 Dance It Away > Another Tricky Day (a few verses only)
15 The Real Me

Known Faults: The show is joined in progress, missing the start of the show which was "Substitute," "I Can't Explain," "Baba O'Riley," "My Wife" and "Sister Disco."

Introduction to the Lost and Found Mike the MICrophone Series

Welcome to JEMS’ Lost and Found Mike the MICrophone series presenting recordings made by legendary taper Mike Millard, AKA Mike the MICrophone, best known for his masters of Led Zeppelin done in and around Los Angeles circa 1975-77. For the complete details on how tapes in this series came to be lost and found again, as well as JEMS' long history with Mike Millard, please refer to the notes in Vol. One.

Until 2020, the Lost and Found series presented fresh transfers of previously unavailable first-generation copies made by Mike himself for friends like Stan Gutoski of JEMS, Jim R, Bill C. and Barry G. These sources were upgrades to circulating copies and in most instances marked the only time verified first generation Millard sources had been directly digitized in the torrent era.

That all changed with the discovery of many of Mike Millard’s original master tapes.

Yes, you read that correctly, Mike Millard’s master cassettes, long rumored to be destroyed or lost, have been found. Not all of them but many, and with them a much more complete picture has emerged of what Millard recorded between his first show in late 1973 and his last in early 1993.

The reason the rediscovery of his master tapes is such a revelation is that we’ve been told for decades they were gone. Internet myths suggest Millard destroyed his master tapes before taking his own life, an imprudent detail likely concocted based on the assumption that because his master tapes never surfaced and Mike’s mental state was troubled he would do something rash WITH HIS LIFE’S WORK. There’s also a version of the story where Mike’s family dumps the tapes after he dies. Why would they do that?

The truth is Mike’s masters remained in his bedroom for many years after his death in 1994. We know at least a few of Millard’s friends and acquaintances contacted his mother Lia inquiring about the tapes at the time to no avail. But in the early 2000s, longtime Millard friend Rob S was the one she knew and trusted enough to preserve Mike’s work.

The full back story on how Mike’s master tapes were saved can be found in the notes for Vol. 18 Pink Floyd, which was the first release in our series transferred from Millard’s original master tapes.

The Who, The Forum, Inglewood, CA, June 20, 1980

The year is 1980 and The Who, resurrected with the addition of Kenney Jones on drums, returns to Los Angeles to perform seven concerts. That's an impressive number of tickets to sell in a single market and shows the demand for the band at the time.

Mike The Mic took The Who's return seriously, recording five of those seven shows including this, opening night of the run at The Forum, the first of two gigs there before moving to the Sports Arena for the final five, one of which, the June 23 show, was released as Vol. 24 in our series.

As was occasionally the case, Mike and Jim R arrived late, missing the start of the set for reasons Jim explains below. After the standard '80 tour opening five songs, Mike gets rolling at the start of "Behind Blue Eyes" and does an excellent job the rest of the way. Despite being incomplete, there are still plenty of highlights to be found here, including an extended, jammy "My Generation" flowing right into a horn-driven "I Can See For Miles." That's followed by the brilliant Tommy instrumental, "Sparks."

The end of the show features a punky take of "Young Man Blues," followed by a cover of Martha and the Vandellas' "Dancing in the Street" that expands into a jam on the future Pete Townshend solo song "Dance It Away," with Roger Daltrey and Townshend both taking vocal turns. It's one of the best "Dance It Away" jams I've heard, a showcase for the unique improvisation The Who was doing circa 1979-80. Before "Dance It Away" ends, Townshend sings a few lines of "Another Tricky Day," which would eventually be released on the band's Face Dances album a year later. The show wraps with a long version of the Quadrophenia classic, "The Real Me."

Mike's riser seats put him in a great taping position and his work here sounds close and full.

Here's what Jim R recalled about The Who, opening night at The Forum 1980:

Mike and I went together to The Who concert at The Forum on June 20, 1980. Instead of our sweet spot on the floor, we were in the primo loge risers close to the stage.

This was opening night, just a couple days before a five-night stand at the LA Sports Arena. Ticket demand was higher for The Forum than the Sports Arena, as it was a more desired and prestigious venue. They didn't call it the Fabulous Forum for nothing: The Lakers won the NBA Championship just a month before and The Forum was their home court. Much of the ticket demand was driven by the music industry, making the Forum a tougher ticket than the Sports Arena despite having larger capacity.

As riser seats go, these were excellent: Section 26, Row FF on the inside aisle. Row BB is two inches above the floor, so ours in FF were four rows above the floor and approximately 10-15 rows back from the stage. Definitely a PA tape. The mics in Mike's hat had direct line of sight to the speaker columns.

The recording is joined in progress. My assumption/fuzzy memory as to why is we were waiting on Graham to get us in the side door where his paid-off security guard was lurking. This was 1980 and security had grown pretty tight. We had to find Graham in the parking lot or across the street from The Forum where he was unloading unsold tickets. Finding Graham often proved rather difficult. It's a pretty big parking lot. In addition, Graham also had our tickets. Loge riser seats were the most prized by brokers, as their high-end clientele wanted to sit above the fray on the floor. Mike liked to call Graham the scalper's scalper: He always had access to the best seats.

Due to increased security at The Forum, I left my camera bag at home. We had to stay under the radar. I included a couple pictures from the LA Sports Arena not used in Vol 24.

The Who were their typical tight-knit selves. High energy. Explosive. All four band members were in fine form and they played most of their big hits. All in all a great night.

I hope you enjoy this one as much as Mike and I did.

Cheers to my buddy Mike.


JEMS is proud to partner with Rob, Jim R, Ed F, Barry G and many others to release Millard's historic recordings and to help set the record straight about the man himself.

We can’t thank Rob enough for reconnecting with Jim and putting his trust in our Millard reissue campaign. He kept Mike’s precious tapes under wraps for two decades, but once Rob learned of our methods and stewardship, he agreed to contribute the Millard DATs and cassettes to the program. Our releases would not be nearly as compelling without Jim’s memories, photos and other background contributions. As many of you have noted, the stories offer an entertaining complement to Mike’s incredible audio documents.

This week we recognize the contributions of Professor Goody for his help with pitch adjustment and to mjk5510 for post-production and artwork.

Finally, cheers to the late, great Mike the MICrophone. His work never ceases to impress. May he rest in peace.



See less See more
  • Like
Reactions: 3
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.