The aim of this section of LiveNIRVANA.com is to document which commercially pressed bootleg CDs are of worth to the audiophile collector of live NIRVANA shows. By commercially pressed bootleg CDs we are referring to those CDs which are unauthorised, factory-pressed (ie. silver-bottomed just like official CDs) with artwork that ressemble official releases and are often found in records stores, at car boots, collectors fairs, etc. Examples include Tacoma 1987, Live Dallas 91, and Complete Reading Festival 1992.
The guide looks at all factory pressed bootleg CDs which contain live NIRVANA shows and gives a judgement on whether they are worth owning. A commercial bootleg is only considered worth owning if: (a) it contains a source not available in trading circles, and/or (b) it contains a more complete version of that source than is available amongst traders. If a commercial bootleg does not fulfil either of these criteria it is not worth owning to the audiophile/collector of live NIRVANA shows.
Thanks to the efforts of traders in tracking down low generation tapes and transferring them to digital mediums for all to enjoy freely through loseless duplication (eg. copying CDRs) and trading there are in fact very few bootlegs out there now that the audiophile needs to have in his, or her, collection: shows once only available on expensive bootlegs are now available for free and in much better quality through trading. For example, there is now no point buying/owning the bootleg Hobkan 1989 (which features NIRVANA's 07/13/89 show) as a better quality and more complete version is available in trading circles sourced from a 1st generation tape.
Some people, however, are still interested in collecting bootlegs either because they do not realise that they can get hold of such material for free or because the bootlegs themselves are often quite attractive, for example most are nicely packaged with proper artwork, etc. However, LiveNIRVANA does not condone the sale or distribution of these unauthorised recordings. Such bootlegs have been proved to fund some very shady operations, including organised crime and ultimately mean someone is making a profit out of NIRVANA which the band will not receive any royalties from. Wherever possible always try to track down trading circle versions of shows and NEVER buy bootlegs. If a bootleg does contain a unique source that is not available through trading circles try to track down a FREE copy (eg. a CDR1) through trading rather than buying the bootleg.
How to read the guide:
The guide contains information on all shows which are currently available on commercial bootleg CDs (ie. unauthorised, factory pressed, silver-sided CDs, with artwork). Such discs are classified in terms of whether they contain the best sounding version of this show or the most complete version or whether the better and more complete versions should be obtained through trading. Additional information on each show (for example, alternative bootlegs releases, releases to avoid, etc) is provided in the notes.
An asterisk (*) indicates that a better sounding and more complete source is available in trading circles for this concert, but that the best-sounding or most complete version of a separate and inferior recording of this show is found on a commercial bootleg. This inferior recording will only be of interest to completists who collect every available recording of each concert.
Finally please note that the best version (in collectors' terminology, generation) of each concert available through trading circles is not given in this document, but is stated in the Live Nirvana Tour History pages, which can be accessed by clicking the link on each concert date in this document.