Greg Kihn - vocals, guitar; Robbie Dunbar - guitar, vocals; Steve Wright - bass; Larry Lynch - drums
Two years after forming, the Greg Kihn Band give another one of their stellar performances on this radio concert captured at New York's Bottom Line. Kihn, an aspiring singer-songwriter from Baltimore, Maryland, migrated to San Francisco in 1974. Shortly after landing in the Bay Area, Kihn became one of the first artists signed to Matthew Kaufman's fledgling indie label, Beserkley Records. Beserkley had had some initial success with such artists as Jonathan Richman and The Modern Lovers and Earth Quake, but it would be Kihn, with his keen sense of radio-friendly melodies, who would go on to be Beserkley's best-selling artist. After a slot on a popular Beserkley compilation, Kihn formed the first version of the Greg Kihn Band with Ronnie Dunbar on guitar and backing vocals, Steve Wright on bass, and Larry Lynch on drums.
Included in this early show are "Remember," which is given an extended seven-minute treatment, followed by a soulful version of Bruce Springsteen's "For You." Springsteen would actually write a few more songs specifically for Kihn, including "Rendezvous," which would show up on 1979's With the Naked Eye.
The rest of the show includes early Kihn material including "Hurt So Bad" (not the same one made famous by Little Anthony and the Imperials), "Everybody Else," "Any Other Woman," and a completely rocking eight-minute version of "Secret Meetings," written by his labelmate, Jonathan Richman. Although this show was before he had his biggest commercial success, it still shows how potent of a rock and roll band this group was.
Kihn would stay with Beserkley for a decade, and the success of his later hit singles, "The Break Up Song (They Don't Write 'Em)," and "Jeopardy," would secure a major label distribution deal for the cutting edge record company from the early 1980s onward.
By 1985, Kihn's popularity began to wane and he started working with smaller labels such as Clean Cuts, out of his native Baltimore. He returned to the Bay Area to work as a morning DJ, and kept touring sporadically through the 1990s. He launched a third career as a successful novelist and author in 1996. His first book, Horror Show, was nominated for the Bram Stoker Award.