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Watch Recorded Live Shows From Metallica, James Brown & More with Music Vault

Tim Brookes 15-07-2014

Do you remember your first live gig? Wouldn’t it be cool if you found footage of the occasion on the Internet? Music Vault might just have it.


The service is currently hosting thousands of live concert recordings on their YouTube channel, many of which are full shows (and many of which aren’t).

If you can’t make it to any upcoming gigs, why not raid the archives and discover classic performances instead.

Wilco, 27 November 1996 in Chicago IL, USA

“Every great thing you’ve ever heard about this band is true,” starts the MC in the recording above of one of Wilco’s mid-90s shows, and he was right. The six-piece rock group, who had formed only two years prior to this recording, certainly went on to achieve greatness – though like many of the best acts in modern music they have always maintained a grounded level of modesty, shunning stardom in favour of doing their own thing.

The recording above was taken at around the time the band were releasing their second album, Being There. That means this set comprises entirely of songs from the first two albums, a rare treat for longterm fans.


Rage Against the Machine, 24 July 1999 at Woodstock ’99

A few years ago I would have given a limb to be able to see Rage Against the Machine live – then it happened, and it was everything I’d hoped for and more. It must be said that seeing the band on their original rampage would have been extra special as the video above taken from Woodstock ’99 shows.

Despite the troubles at Woodstock that year, this particular set is often remarked upon as one of the highlights of the weekend (and for good reason, just look at the crowd).

Korn, 18 October 1998 in New Orleans, LA


If you were an angry teenager, you’re probably well aware that 1998 would was a great year to see Korn live. Still rocking the original lineup (founding drummer David Silveria left in 2006) and performing nothing but early hits, the band have changed considerably in style and image since the good old days.

The setlist includes some of the bands best known hits like A.D.I.D.A.S, Shoots and Ladders (with full extended intro) and Blind.

Metallica, 24 July 1999 at Woodstock ’99

Woodstock 99 was marred by corporate greed, crowd troubles, violence and general unrest. Despite all the negativity, some of the performances are fondly remembered like this one, on the festival’s penultimate night before “the day the music died”.


Metallica’s live act is a spectacle that grabs, holds and shakes you, as you can see from the recording above. Blessed with a back catalogue of metal anthems, Metallica are known for their ability to maintain energy levels at peak output throughout the entire set without losing momentum.

James Brown, 26 January 1986 in New York, NY

Talking about acts who are still alive has the unfortunate effect of making me pine for those who are not, one of which is the Godfather of Soul James Brown.

Featuring one of the strangest openings to a gig I have ever seen (a large plastic robot greeting earthlings and declaring his love for soul music), this is a proper old school show the likes of which most modern music doesn’t even attempt to recreate.


The Ramones, 28 December 1978 in San Francisco, LA

Punk has never been so dead with the news that the last remaining member of The Ramones, Tommy Ramone, lost his battle with bile duct cancer last week. The video above was shot at the iconic Winterland venue in San Francisco only two years after the band’s formation.

Classics like I Wanna Be Sedated and Blitzkrieg Bop went on to ignite the fire within many that became the punk movement, and they appear here alongside a somewhat recognisable cover of The Trashmen’s Surfin’ Bird.

The Rest

Naturally, your own classic concert memories and favourite artists will differ from mine. Many of the best live acts you’ve always dreamed of seeing can be found in the archives, so take a look at the Music Vault YouTube channel and see what you can find.

What was your first concert? Share your memories, below!

Image credit: Johnny Marr live @ Bolognetti Rock 1 (Roberto Taddeo)

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