In the early 1960s Paul Lucas was the bass player in Jeff Beck's band The Tridents, and, along with the embryonic Who and Yardbirds, frequented Giorgio Gomelsky's Crawdaddy Club, first situated at the Station Hotel in Richmond, later moving to the Richmond Athletic Association at the end of June, 1963. On the occasion that the above recording was made at the Athletic Association venue, sometime between July and September, 1963, Mr Lucas had borrowed a friend's clockwork tape recorder (clockwork recorders were usually used by news reporters and pre-dated cassette recorders). Mr Lucas recalls having to arrive early at the venue to get close to the stage. When the Stones came on, he and his brother were situated to the left of the stage, just in front of Brian Jones, and asked his permission to record the performance.
Giorgio Gomelsky's club became known as the Crawdaddy after the Stones started their weekly stint on 24th February - the Bo Diddley song Doing The Crawdaddy was the last number of their set. It was here that they first came to the attention of the Press, were famously visited by The Beatles at Gomelsky's invitation on 14th April, and first seen by Andrew Loog Oldham on 28th April. Oldham moved quickly to sign up the Stones, and on 1st May, Brian Jones found himself in the offices Oldham rented from Eric Easton on Regent Sreet, signing a three-year management contract on behalf of the group. In his autobiography Stone Alone, Bill Wyman said of receiving their first paycheck from Gomelsky..."the place was to mean much more to the band's future than money..."
Although a couple of set lists from this era have been preserved, no live recordings were thought to exist. Due to the nature of the recording equipment used, not all the tracks are complete, some suffer from either intermittent microphone connection or dropout due to the machine needing to be wound up and restarted (tracks that are complete have been marked as such in the catalogue description). In spite of the primitive recording equipment, the quality is surprisingly good and the tape captures the excitement created by the group rated by The Beatles, among others, as Britain's finest R&B band.