Many of his unreleased tracks have been leaked posthumously, but one live performance was recently uncovered. The performance is from a pilot of “The Jon Brion Show,” which was produced for VH1 and never made it to air.
The show had Smith playing with producer Jon Brion, who pitched the show as a sort of variety show, along with jazz pianist Brad Mehldau.
Smith plays some of his most favored songs including “Everything Means Nothing To Me” and “Son of Sam.” He also plays a few covers including John Lennon’s “Jealous Guy.”
Film director Paul Thomas Anderson (“Boogie Nights,” “There Will be Blood”) is the one that directed the pilot and who uploaded to the Internet. Apparently, Anderson found it on a VHS tape: “I tore up the floorboards at H.Q. the other day and came up with this little number on VHS. She holds up well.”
Other than some weird VHS tape-style goofiness, it’s pretty good.