Best song EVER of the week: Rainbow’s Cadillac

Beginning a new feature in which we invite your input… best song EVER (of the week). First up… Rainbow’s Cadillac.

DSCF3493To begin with, some facts:

  • It’s a real concert regular, having been played over 400 times according to our setlist records
  • It scored a whopping 84% rating in your look back at Harbor Lights, the third highest score on the record
  • The first account we have of the song being played live was at Farm Aid at Ames, IA in April ’93, the month that it was released as a part of the Harbor Lights record.

This song typfied  the “new” Bruce Hornsby sound on Harbor Lights, his first record post-Range. It wasn’t like anything we’d heard before – the solos took even more of a jazz direction than the first three records, and Bruce really sounded as though he was having a conversation with the keys.

Rainbow’s Cadillac was the first song I ever heard Bruce play live, when he opened with it at the Jazz Café in June 1993 (recording below). It was soon apparent how different the live performances were to the record, as Bruce hammered out a very different version with John Molo and Jimmy Haslip in tow.

The song also got the Furthur treatment later, when Bruce toured with the Furthur and Other Ones tours (see second download below). It has frequently led into the Dead favourite Franklin’s Tower at Bruce’s own shows, from 1993 until as recently as 2014.

Soon after the Other Ones, it became more of an accordion-led song, further proving its malleability this past summer when it got an almost bluegrass feel, with Quinn the Eskimo references thoughout (third dowbload below).

We look forward to hearing the song continue to evolve!

What are your thoughts on Rainbow’s Cadilac? Leave your comments below.

See also:


From Jazz Café, London .. June 21 1993:

  01. Rainbow's Cadillac
» 5.1 MiB - 646 downloads

From Sacramento CA .. July 29 1996:

  01. Rainbow's Cadillac > Well You Needn't
» 10.4 MiB - 454 downloads

From the Biltmore, Asheville, NC .. August 22 2015:

  01. Rainbow's Cadillac
» 6.7 MiB - 596 downloads

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