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The 1970s started out rough for Texas guitar slinger Johnny Winter, who was suffering from heroin addiction while trying to pursue the Johnny Winter And project with former members of the McCoys, including guitarist Rick Derringer. Winter spent nearly two years absent from recording and touring in order to seek treatment for his addiction, and in 1973 he returned to deliver Still Alive and Well, which was aptly titled and grew to become a high point in the guitarist’s recording career. He continued to release albums in the following years, including Captured Live!, which came out in March 1976.
This performance, at Winterland on April 30, 1976, includes the same band Winter played with on Captured Live!. This was the powerhouse rhythm section of Randy Jo Hobbs on bass and Richard Hughes on drums, as well as Floyd Radford on guitar, whose frantic energy met that of Winter’s with awesome might. This recording only captures the encore of the quartet’s performance, which is still an impressive feat—the group played Chuck Berry’s “Johnny B. Goode” and “Roll Over Beethoven,” in a fast-paced ending with an intense guitar blowout. Countless artists have attempted to cover these Berry classics, but rarely are they heard in such blistering form. Listen to Johnny Winter perform “Johnny B. Goode” and “Roll Over Beethoven” at Winterland on this date in 1976.