A work in progress
Thursday, November 5, 2020
Tuesday, October 6, 2020
I love 1970 Dead. The sound is so interesting and transformational. I also love that there is so much more music and information to discover. This is ongoing, Im into April
Let's start with Weather Report co-writer Eric Andersen's December 1969 show at Town Hall NYC
Just for fun because I didnt know how big he was.
Monday, September 7, 2020
This was a fun show, only time I saw the Grateful Dead when it did not say that on the marque.
I recall going to the Horse Racing track and then a long line and a delay then a real fun night
Corry did it best here a decade ago
Wednesday, August 26, 2020
Wasn't even scheduled until August 1972. Band had a Santa Barbara show scheduled
Has crazy good versions of all of these songs
Here is the music from that day
From Howard Weiner's Deadology II:
8-27-72 Old Renaissance Faire Grounds – Veneta, OR: The Grateful Dead launch this second set with thirty-one and a half minutes of consistent “Dark Star” bliss. If I were paid to edit this version down to thirty minutes, I would refuse the assignment. Every second of this performance is engaging. Perhaps a few “Dark Stars” have greater peaks, but few have a never-ending stream of virtuosity that compares to Veneta. This “D Star” takes off with an air of confidence. In the previous set, the band blitzed through what is widely recognized as the greatest version of “Playin’ in the Band.” Phil’s on top of the world in Veneta. His bass blasts create aural astrological charts. The improvisation glows and gleams—a polished musical score that seemingly materializes effortlessly.
Weiner, Howard. Deadology Volume II: The Evolution of 33 Grateful Dead Jam Anthems (p. 141). Kindle Edition.
From Jesse Jarnow's Heads:
NAKED POLE GUY, ascend! In a hairy sun-stroked flash he bounds from the roof of a backstage equipment truck and scampers to a sweet perch behind the Grateful Dead while the band plays “Jack Straw” in the melting Oregon heat. At this moment in late August of 1972, more vividly than any other, the Grateful Dead’s territory is completely manifest in front of them as they play for 20,000 people at a hippie-organized benefit in the northwestern countryside. It is a different America here, a wide-open and complete product of a peace-loving, postcolonial, psychedelic culture that for the past decade has staked increasing claims on portions of the tangible continent. And the day’s music is the most complete rendition yet of this developing psychedelic ritual, helping to further consecrate this specific patch of land. The Dead are already midway through the second set of the afternoon when Naked Pole Guy arrives in the frame, but it’s been a magical day already. Jerry Garcia spoke of the presence of “invisible time-travelers” at Woodstock, and the Dead’s gig at the Oregon Renaissance Faire Grounds has its share, too. For starters, there’s the crew of tripping longhairs capturing just as much as they can on their limited film stock. Naked Pole Guy will become legend! A human freak flag boogying in the breeze while, just below, the Grateful Dead jam incandescently for the Oregon heads! Go Naked Pole Guy, go! It’s the nearby Springfield Creamery and its friendly bubble-lettered storefront sign that kicked the cosmic gear works into motion and why the Dead’s performance might be seen as a symbolic pivot point for an entire way of life up there in the Northwest. The backstory reads like a psychedelic exploitation musical: small-town hippies market new-fangled organic yogurt, run afoul of the squares, need to save the family farm, call in the Dead. And that’s exactly what’s playing out on this insane sweltering day here in the field with all these naked tripping people.
Jarnow, Jesse. Heads: A Biography of Psychedelic America (pp. 58-59). Da Capo Press. Kindle Edition.
A total of 20,000 free-spirited Deadheads descended on the fairground and to have been among them would have been a teenage English hippy's sunshine daydream. Alas, I was stranded several thousand miles away, still struggling to escape the drab conformity of lace-curtained 70s suburban Britain. Better late than never, many years later, on a sweltering hot August day in 1999 I made a pilgrimage to visit Kesey on his Oregon farm. Several of the surviving characters from Wolfe's book, including Mountain Girl (Carolyn Garcia) and the Intrepid Traveller (Ken Babbs), showed up to meet me. We hung out in the sunshine, had a barbeque and listened to tapes of the Dead, reliving memories of the day when the band had played perhaps its greatest ever show for Kesey's farm.
What is most striking about the recording from that sun-kissed day is the fluidity with which the Dead absorbed and transmuted every genre of vernacular American music, from blues, folk and gospel to country, R&B and rockabilly, and fed them into some of the most audacious, freewheeling rock'n'roll ever made – past and future, outlaw spirit and hippy idealism fused into a soundtrack for a brave new frontier that birthed an alternative sub-culture which survives to this day.
An epic psychedelic jam around Dark Star full of vaulting, freeform improvisation mutates alchemically into a loping take on Marty Robbins' cowboy ballad El Paso. Merle Haggard's country weepie Sing Me Back Home, delivered hauntingly in Garcia's reedy but expressive voice, gives way to the Dead's surging, feelgood acid anthem Sugar Magnolia, with its irresistible sunshine daydream refrain. Throw in the loose-limbed rhapsody of Chuck Berry's Promised Land, the psyched-up folk-blues racination of I Know You Rider and the group's own storied, myth-making compositions such as Truckin', Casey Jones and Playing in the Band and you have cosmic American music at its most potent and joyous.