Our Classic Rock Bands That Have Never Released A Live Album article takes a look at a group of legendary rockers who for whatever reason have never released an official live album. The live album especially in the 1970s was often one of rock and roll’s most loved releases. Everyone loves live albums. They often represented what the bands or artists actually sounded like in concert without the help of studio overdubs and gimmicks. It really separated the artists who could play their instruments from those who really could not. It defined real singers who could hold their own on stage without having to double their voice.
In the 1960s and 70s not many artists used backing tracks live. The technology just was not there with few exceptions. The concert stage was unforgiving to those who could not play or sing for real. But for those who could, the euphoria of a live audience often fueled already great musicians and singers to hit notes and play solos that may have been unimaginable to even the artists themselves.
While many artists released live albums to give fans a chance to hear how great they sounded on stage, many artists also released live albums to fulfill contractual obligations. Many record deals required artists to release a certain amount of albums without always stipulating what type of album. For that reason, we have witnessed some bands and artists release some very interesting and unexpected albums just to fulfill contracts. Nonetheless. there are many bands and artists who have never released live albums. This list will look at some big names who have never given their fans a live record. Of course, this list does not include bootlegs which are out of the control of the artists. It also doesn’t include official digital download releases which are becoming more and more frequent in the modern music world.
This list does not count live CDs that were included as part of a live DVD/ CD release or box set, or independent releases by the artists not on a major label.
10 Classic Rock Bands That Have Never Released A Live Album
In no particular order……
# 1 – Boston
The first band that came to mind was Boston. The legendary group that gave us the songs “More Than A Feeling,” “Peace Of Mind,” and “Don’t Look Back has never released a live album. Of course, we must remember that Boston’s first album was really a product of Tom Sholtz in the studio. Of course, over the years, Boston has employed many wonderful musicians in the group to bring their stage show to life. This is a band we would love to get a live album from. Since the group still tours, it’s possible that one day we could take them off this list.
# 2 – The Cars
The Cars released their first album in 1978. Overall this great band from Boston released seven studio albums between the years 1978 and 2011. The group has also released eight compilation albums. The band’s lead singers and songwriters Benjamin Orr and Ric Ocasek, have both passed away, therefore, putting an end to the band. Warner Brothers did release a live DVD that included a live CD in the package in 2006 called Cars Unlocked. However, the band has never released a stand-alone live audio album.
# 3 – Garbage
The band Garbage was formed in 1993. They stand as one of the most rocking and original sounding rock bands of the past thirty years. The group has released seven studio albums and three compilations. There are multiple live DVD releases and even a compilation audio cd with a live track, but no single release live albums on cd or vinyl. We have seen Garbage live multiple times so we can confirm how great they sound on the concert stage. This is a group that should release a live album.
# 4 – Traveling Wilburys
Was there ever a rock and roll supergroup that had more famous musicians in it than the Traveling Wilburys did? With a lineup that included Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne, Roy Orbison and Tom Petty we don’t think you could find a more famous supergroup. It’s a shame that this group never released a live album. It’s probably because there really weren’t many live shows to pull from. The group only released two studio albums. Still, it would have been fun to hear these legends singing live together and listening to all these voices harmonize on stage.
# 5 – Don Henley
Even though Don Henley does appear with the Eagles on the group’s three office live albums, he has never released a live album as a solo artist unlike his ole partner Glenn Frey who did release a live album as a solo artist. If we look at Don Henley’s musical career, the man has spent just as much time as solo artist as he did as a member of the Eagles who were broken up for a long time and had taken thirty-eight years in between their last two albums.
# 6 – Joan Jett
Joan Jett is one of the most exciting performers in rock and roll. So how in the world has she not released an official live album? There is a film soundtrack, but it’s not a stand-alone live album. Overall, Joan Jett has released fourteen studio albums and eight compilation albums. No live albums.
# 7 – The Young Rascals / The Rascals
Whenever I hear this band’s music it reminds me of growing up in the Bronx during the summers of the 1960s. The band just has that sound of summer to them. You know what they don’t have…… a live album.
# 8 – Harry Nilsson
Now talk about a man who could really sing. The man Harry Nilsson released eighteen studio albums in a fourteen year period between 1966 and 1980. He never released a live album.
# 9 – Audioslave
One of our favorite bands to have been formed in the past twnety years was the raging group called Audioslave. In many ways, this was a supergroup for fans of 90s and 2000s rock. Formed by the legendary Chris Cornell of Soundgarden and Rage Against the Machine musicians Tom Morello, Tim Commerford and Brad Wilk, this band may have also been the most underrated rock band of the 21st century. The group only released three studio albums. They did release a live EP and a couple of live DVDs but they never released a full-length live album on cd or vinyl.
# 10 -Velvet Revolver
They only released two albums but man these guys could play. Their record company should put a live album out if they have the recordings.
10 Classic Rock Bands That Have Never Released A Live Album article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2022
Classicrockhistory.com claims ownership of all its original content and Intellectual property under United States Copyright laws and those of all other foreign countries. No one person, business, or organization is allowed to re-publish any of our original content anywhere on the web or in print without our permission. All photos used are either public domain creative commons photos or licensed officially from Shutterstock under license with ClassicRockHistory.com. All photo credits have been placed at end of the article.