When I first started posting bootlegs I had no idea what I was doing. I’d been collecting bootlegs for a long time but that was mostly through snail mail trades and vines. I grabbed some shows from torrents but Internet speeds and bandwidth allocations kept me from doing that with much enthusiasm. I’d not yet discovered bootleg blogs so I was pretty clueless as to how to actually host the boots. Initially I found some janky MP3 hosting sites that were full of ads and likely a variety of Internet poisons. Eventually someone suggested Megaupload so I tried that. I was so unskilled that I started uploading each song individually which must have drove my early readers completely mad. Eventually I realized I could zip an entire show and upload it which made things much easier.
Around this time I discovered other bootleg blogs and learned a lot from them as to how my site should work. It also opened up a new world to me. Though I was a competent bootleg collector at this point the only places I’d ever gone were Grateful Dead related circles. I had no idea there were so many other boots from so many other bands. I downloaded like a maniac.
More and more I was uploading like a maniac as well. Bootlegs were getting a lot of traction and at the time I was hungry for more blog visitors. Initially I posted all the bootlegs I owned on CD. Soon that ran out and I started posting the MP3s I had downloaded from other blogs, but I couldn’t keep up. For awhile I had two computers going. One was constantly torrenting new shows and the other was uploading and posting those same shows nearly as fast as I could download them.
Ten years later I am still uploading multiple shows a day but I have so many shows on my hard drive I sometimes feel I’ll never get through them. Especially as I continue to find other shows I simply “must” download.
When I posted the #10 show in this little anniversary collection there was a conversation in the comments about how one might start visiting your favorite shows in hopes of boosting their ranking so that they might be included in the list. Truth is that is quite a possibility. As I am going to be dolling out these posts over the next several months it is quite likely the rankings will change quite a bit between now and October when my #1 gets posted. In fact as I write this now, just days after writing about the #10 ranking that post, Abandoned Desire, has moved itself up to the #5 position. I guess I shouldn’t have linked to it 😉
My next confession is that when I wrote about #10 I miscounted and Abandoned Desire was actually number 9 with this 1978 Tour Collection coming in at # 10. I would fix that posthumously but as noted its already changed places. Not that any of this matters. There is no prize for being in my top 10 bootlegs posts. This is just a way for me to say thanks to all of you guys for supporting the site for so long and a fun chance to revisit some old posts.
I posted this compilation of songs from 1978 not all that long ago. I first hit the site in June of 2017 and has since racked up 2,125 hits. It was DylanDave who turned me onto it, pointing me to where it had been posted on another site. It is a nice little comp from a very good year for Bob Dylan. Turns out you guys like Bob Dylan an awful lot as he shows up in almost every single spot on this list. But that’s a discussion for another time.