About the Sufjan Stevens Live Archive

We are a not-for-profit, fan-run archive of live music by Sufjan Stevens. We will soon start posting and cataloguing all recordings we have collected since the early 2000s in the highest quality available. We’ve decided to start this project because a lot of this material has been slowly falling out of circulation over the years - or it is being circulated after being transcoded, posted on YouTube, ripped to MP3 again, and so on. By providing a permanent place for them, we hope to prevent these recordings from disappearing or becoming unlistenable after decades of lossy conversions.

If you have an upgrade for a gig we have posted (or an entirely new recording we are missing), we will be very happy to host it.

Lastly, this site contains no commercially available music, and we encourage the purchase of all of Sufjan’s studio albums. This is in line with this comment by Asthmatic Kitty’s John Beeler: “I’d say do whatever you like! We have no interest in hunting down bootlegs. As a personal opinion I think they’re great. Thanks for your support. It’s so appreciated.”

pain is beauty (listen)

shades of cool (lana del rey) girls (the 1975) i know what boys like (the waitresses)  lolita (lana del rey) whatever lola wants (sarah vaughn) national anthem vs bubblegum bitch (lana/marina mashup) candy store (heathers: the musical) bend and snap (leagally blonde: the musical) it’s raining on prom night (grease: the musical) donatella (myrtle snow AHS remix) cherry bomb (kylie minouge) toxic (britney spears) that girl (ts madison) attention whore (melleefresh vs. deadmau5) would you say thank you if i spank you? (the turbomen) gods and mosters (lana del rey) million dollar man (lana del rey) young and beautiful (lana del rey) yayo (lana del rey) 400 lux (lorde) yellow flicker beat (lorde) earned it (the weekend) skinny love (birdy) homewrecker (marina and the diamonds) house of the rising sun (lauren o'connell) shades of cool (lana del rey) big spender (fosse) glory box (portishead) fear and loathing (marina and the diamonds) happy (marina and the diamonds)

we get used 
to telling our stories to
one pair of eyes, one smile, one
pattern of freckles.
we come home looking for that,
for someone who can help us
record our existence and
without you 
i couldn’t remember 
where i put my keys 
or when the last time
i ate was but
i am learning to keep track of myself;
to split my story
among the people i love, to
keep some of it
for myself 
in my art, in journals, in 
songs i haven’t shared with you.
i have learned to tell my story
to the trees and bees and floorboards,
i have found myself in these secrets
that belong to my bedroom, my toenails, 
lavender soap
nostalgia wants me to take you back
have back those eyes that 
spent more time on your phone than looking at me,
have back that smile that grew tight, 
unlistening - 
and while once my hero was you,
the book i’ve printed in the new carpet
is better 
without chapters
about you.
—  r.i.d
5 ways Prince reigned supreme

by Hot Chip’s Alexis Taylor and Joe Goddard 

Photo: Richard Melloul/Corbis.

He was every DJ’s best friend

There’s a track from the early 1980s called Cloreen Baconskin that’s 15 minutes long, and is basically just a jam session with him playing bass and putting on a strange voice. I played it when I was DJing in Brussels and people kept coming up and asking me what it was because the voice is so raw and the drumming is so amazingly simple.

Photo: Warner Brothers /Retna.

He took pop to brave new places

Prince was a pop musician – he never went off and made an unlistenable avant-garde record. But he could still do disorientating things in the studio. 

Photo: E. Aaron/Redferns

He was the ultimate rarities artist

Some stuff from the Parade era is great, such as Others Here With Us, a bizarre and frightening song. Movie Star, which came out on the Crystal Ball compilation, is another favorite – it’s a witty send-up of a successful person in the mid-80s who does loads of drugs and attends all the premieres.

Photo: Brian Rasic/Rex Features.

He was one of the great showmen

When it comes to playing live, Prince was just so confident in his ability. He teased the crowd with segues between popular songs, covers and extended versions, and was quite happy to play slow jams for half an hour if that’s what he felt like. 

Photo: Allstar/Warner Brothers.

He is a lifelong inspiration

It’s mainly the actual groove – the way melodic and rhythmic patterns interlock together – that we take from him. But sometimes he’s influenced me directly. The song Hittin’ Skittles was about someone I knew.

Prince died on Thursday at age 57. Share your reactions and memories with the Guardian. 


“Now I’m slippin’ bitches mickies, while rockin’ a Cosby sweater.”

“Your klan never had a klu like ku klux.”

i could spend the rest of my life on this poem and would fail to provide the attention it deserves, and that is why you are here

and this is why those we love leave us:
for asking so little, but for far too long.
that shallows fade from lips with ease;

that you are young and coasting free,
unlistening to comfort of voice behind,
unknowing that this is learning to sing.

and this is how we stem tides of tears:
with deliberate steps and steady song.
that promises lie where none believe;

that you are young and coasting free,
unlistening to caution of voice behind,
unknowing that this is learning to sing.

The Sad Internet: 2014 in Review

In “The Sad Internet: 2014 Year in Review” Rob Walker gives a tour of a collection of great projects, including Forgetify (which takes you to unlistened-to Spotify songs), NoLikesYet (which shows you unliked Instagram photos) and Sad Tweets (which reveals the tweets of yours that haven’t been liked or retweeted).

He also calls this blog “a pioneer of the form.” Woohoo! 

I also recommend this piece on Medium from Rob, called “How To Pay Attention.” If you’ve contributed to this site over the past years (and a lot of you have), you’ll get it!

Who wants to start a podcast with me? The first episode will have horrible audio quality so we can basically write that one off, but I’m hoping for the second one we can maybe make fun of a bad movie or some kooks on the internet and make some super sick jokes. We’ll do the same thing in the third episode except instead of entirely new jokes we’ll also re-use ones from the previous episode so that they’re enshrined as running gags. The fourth episode will be us answering listener questions for five hours and the fifth one will be made up entirely of recycled material from the first four episodes and be entirely unlistenable.