As Third Man prepares for the unveiling of its new storefront location in the Cass Corridor in Detroit, we’ve naturally looked back to our history and roots there. Less than a mile from the new TMR location (441 West Canfield) sat an important bar called the Gold Dollar. This bar not only hosted the first two live performances by the White Stripes (both featured in Vault package #13), but quite a few more legendary early sets by the band. Through their woodshedding Detroit years, the Gold Dollar stage would be where the White Stripes would continue to make their most important progress. After the Stripes finished the tracking of their first album (also taking place just a stone’s throw from the Dollar) in January 1999, they immediately focused attention on a live performance at the Gold Dollar on Saturday February 6th, 1999. Lead singer Jack White designed and printed two striking, distinct flyers to promote the show and the local free weekly Metro Times even did a mini-preview on the band to drum up interest for the show. With good friends They Come in Threes supporting the Stripes' second-ever headlining show, the gig was notable for the first-ever live performances of songs “Astro”, “Suzy Lee” and the Robert Johnson classic “Stop Breaking Down”…all of which would be featured on their self-titled debut album released just three months later. The transitional nature of the setlist of this performance captures the band as they grapple with the impending release of their new album and the best way to showcase that material prior to its release.
As the focal point of Vault package #26, a complete recording from that evening, newly mixed from original multi-track sources, will be pressed on blood red vinyl and made available to subscribers worldwide. The White Stripes Live at the Gold Dollar Vol. III is the third release (Vault 13 comprised both volumes I and II) in an on-going series that will eventually see the release of all extant audio from the band at the Gold Dollar. There are still many unheard treasures to be revealed.
This is the first White Stripes show released from the pivotal year 1999…the year which saw the band unleash their first album, do their first extended run of touring with three shows opening for Pavement in the Southeast and found Jack White buying his soon-to-be trademark Airline guitar…all building blocks to what would eventually turn the band into the international juggernaut they became.
The White Stripes Live at the Gold Dollar Vol. III
Jimmy the Exploder
The Big Three Killed My Baby
Stop Breaking Down (first live performance) (Robert Johnson)
Suzy Lee (first live performance)
Let’s Build a Home
Sugar Never Tasted So Good
One More Cup of Coffee (Bob Dylan)
Astro (first live performance)
Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground
Wasting My Time
Red Bowling Ball Ruth
Cannon/John the Revelator/Grinnin' in Your Face (Son House)
Let’s Shake Hands
In conjunction with the live album, a reproduction of one of the Jack White-designed flyers for that evening… three black-and-white peppermints, each varying in circumference and oriented on top of each other…will be included in the package as an 10.75” x 14" iron-on transfer. All Vault members will be welcome to submit photos of their use of the transfer and the member who’s submission is considered the “best” by the TMR team will win a rare, limited test pressing of the aforementioned LP.
Additionally, the other flyer from that evening (also a peppermint, this time on a field of red sparkly naugahyde) AND the setlist as written in Jack’s hand will be included as high-quality color reproductions. Fully utilizing everything in the TMR archives to round out the package finds us also printing the news clipping of the show preview and the hand-written price list from the merch table for that night. Third Man is nothing if not thorough.
Completing the Gold Dollar presentation will be two full-color, 8 x 10, glossy prints of photographs taken by the estimable Doug Coombe, featuring Jack and Meg live on stage at the tiny Cass Corridor club in 1999. These are visually arresting to say the least.
The 7” for Vault 26 is a continuation of the Dead Weather single series, pairing the moving torch song “Impossible Winner” and “Mile Markers.” When complete, every song from the Dead Weather’s critically-lauded album Dodge and Burn will appear exclusively in 7” form as a single on captivatingly colored vinyl. Are these two songs a hint as to the next possibly music video to come from this merry band of grifters…it seems only time will tell. In the meantime, enjoy Alison belt this one out complete with string section accompaniment and revel in the inherent beauty in this transcendent album-closer.
Harkening back to where this all started, the bonus item for this vault package will be an impressive 1.25” enamel pin of the new Third Man Records Cass Corridor logo. Soon to be seen on the lapels and collars of bon vivants the world over, this dazzling pin will no doubt impress even the most die-hard skeptics.
For more information about the Gold Dollar, visit www.golddollar.com.