Please make yourself at home! Check some tags, do some reading, leave a comment.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Digitization Makes Me Happy

Via, the UCSB Daily Nexus (and before it, the El Gaucho) has been digitized. Having sniffed around Santa Barbara a fair bit (UCSB being my alma mater), I am happy to see this, and found a few good things.

First, I have found a preview and a review of OAITW 4/12/73 at the Granada, which gave me another piece of evidence in favor of the proposition that the undated set found in shnid-99222 is indeed from this date (the late show).

Second, in addition to a very positive review of the 5/25/74 GD gig, one Stephen Westfall notes to my amusement that the first band was billed as Great American Music Band but announced as Great American String Band --I should just acronymize as GA_B-- and to my surprise that the band featured none other than Cecil Taylor and Archie Shepp collaborator, the great Buell Neidlinger, apparently at this time teaching at Cal Arts in Valencia, on bass. I did not know that. If a tape would ever come into the light, I'd be mighty happy about that.

Third, I found a preview and a review of the 5/19/84 JGB show --a mighty good one-- which both mention DeeDee Dickerson rather than Gloria Jones, and seem to do so reasonably knowledgeably. This has led me to again revise my understanding of DDD's tenure. While we used to think it ended in mid-83, and I have recently extended it through that year, it now seems to have run at least into May of 1984. I would love to learn more about when Gloria Jones actually came in!

There were also various materials around 10/13/74 (JGMS), 6/26/75 (LOM), and 2/5/77 (JGB), now swept into my vortex. Good stuff.

Reading Notes: Greenfield 1996

I have read this book a few times, and it has clearly informed my thinking about a lot of issues without my really being aware of it. So I finally got around to transcribing some notes in the way that I do.

I guess this book was controversial (and maybe still is), but to me it reads like Greenfield was able to get people to be open and honest about a lot of things that generally went unspoken, and for that I am grateful. Too much dark is too much, of course. But more truth, understanding, clarity is very helpful to me as I try to understand this very complicated fellow whose name adorns the banner above.

So, reading notes below the jump.

Classical Music

I am trying together instances of Garcia engaging classical music, which are few and far between.

Alan Trist reports that ca. 1960-1961 one of their friends "John the Poet" had a great classical recording collection, and they listened to a lot of Bach. "Endless Bach," Trist said. Jerry and Trist and a few others went to see three or four performance by the Vatican organist playing Grace Cathedral (Greenfield 1996, 17).

Of course, there's Beethoven's "Bagatelle No. 25 in A minor", a.k.a. "Für Elise", played by James Booker on 1/9/76.

Nick has hipped me to brief GD engagements with Bach's "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" over the years, including 55 seconds into the 11/30/73 Dark Star, the last minute of the Other One transitioning into Stella Blue on 3/14/81, @ 5:25 of Space on 10/28/84, 6 minutes into Space on 12/13/90, and @ ca. 9:25 of Space on 2/20/91. Phil dabbled around aplenty, too, I gather.

Any others I should know about?

Related, Heather Garcia Katz, his daughter by Sara Ruppenthal, is a violinist, and ca. early 1993 (according to Greenfield 1996, 285), she and Jerry had been working on a project with the Redwood City Symphony Orchestra. I would very, very much like to learn more about that. If anyone knows Heather, please send her my way!

Naturally, Blair is on the case, after narrating spring 1991, he says "Later that year, Jerry and the conductor of the Redwood [Symphony], Eric Kujawsky, hatched a plan for Garcia to commission several short works for guitar and orchestra, which he would perform with the Redwood. With glee he told Sara. 'I let him think I was doing him a favor, but I've always wanted an orchestra!' … Although Jerry did contact some composers and Davies Symphony [403] Hall in San Francisco was tentatively booked for the performance, this was one of the great plans that Garcia never managed to complete" (Jackson 1999, 402-403).

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Greenpeace 'No Nukes' Benefit at the Old Waldorf: Reconstruction, April 23, 1979

I wanted to love this, but I found very little that moved me. Maybe I was tired.

LN jg1979-04-23.reconstruction.all.aud-composite.126927.flac1644

Old Waldorf
444 Battery Street
San Francisco, CA 94111
April 23, 1979 (Monday) - Early and Late shows
composite auds flac1644 shnid-126927

--early show (10 tracks, 8 tunes, 92:26)--
e-t01. announcement/crowd/tuning [0:52]
e-t02. Get Up And Dance [11:42] [1:10]
e-t03. Nessa [16:55] [1:01]
e-t04. Someday Baby [8:30] (1) [1:35]
e-t05. I Just Want To Stop [4:22] [0:51]
e-t06. Fast Tone [13:15] [0:07] % [0:34]
e-t07. Ain't That Lovin' You [9:29] [1:18]
e-t08. Strugglin' Man [6:16] [1:13]
e-t09. Another Star [12:17] [0:10]
e-t10. announcement [0:47]

--late show (11 tracks, 8 tunes, 79:20)--
l-t01. announcement/crowd/tuning [2:11]
l-t02. What You Won't Do For Love [6:52]
l-t03. Do I Move You? [13:09] [0:43]
l-t04. Fast Tone [17:06] [0:28]
l-t05. band introductions [0:58]
l-t06. When The Hunter Gets Captured By The Game [5:00] [1:15]
l-t07. Tellin' My Friends [4:26] [0:54]
l-t08. The Mohican And The Great Spirit [9:48]
l-t09. Make It Better [6:47]
l-t10. It Ain't No Use [9:15]
l-t11. announcement [0:24]

 ! ACT1: Reconstruction (January 30, 1979 - September 22, 1979)
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards, synthesizers, vocals;
! lineup: Ron Stallings - saxophone, vocals;
! lineup: Ed Neumeister - trombone;
! lineup: Gaylord Birch - drums, vocals.


! Recording: symbols: % = recording discontinuity; / = clipped song; // = cut song; ... = fade in/out; # = truncated timing; [ ] = recorded event time. The recorded event time immediately after the song or item name is an attempt at getting the "real" time of the event. So, a timing of [x:xx] right after a song title is an attempt to say how long the song really was, as represented on this recording.

! JGC: (early); (late).

! map:


! venue: The first two of seven Garcia shows at the Old Waldorf (4/23/79a, 4/23/79b, 5/18/79, 5/19/79, 1/27/81, 1/11/82, 1/13/82).

! historical: Greenpeace No Nukes Benefit, "with special guest Jerry Garcia". Photographer Chris Stone took some amazing pix this night. Follow link via JGMF, "Reconstruction Pix by Chris Stone"

! P: overall, I found this show less compelling than most Reconstruction.

! R: Main Source (SHN_ID: 9609): MAC > DATs > CDs > EAC > SHN; Taped by Eldon Porray, Nak CM-700s > Sony TC-D5; Extraction using EAC, re-tracking using CD Wave, .shn encoding using mkwACT, and sector boundary verification using shntool. Secondary [Patch] Source: MAC > standalone CD > unknown processing > CD-R; Taped by SL, unknown mono cassette recorder with unknown hand held mic. Noise reduction was applied by SL during his transfer to CD-R. Patched and FLAC'ed by PsyKies, March 2013

! R: seeder notes: "The secondary source was converted from CD-R to wave using EAC in secure mode and provides the following patches: Early show: d1t01 announcement/crowd/tuning: all; d1t02 Get Up And Dance: 0:00 - 12.20; d2t01 Fast Tone: 12:23 - 12:36; d2t02 Ain't That Lovin' You: 2:27 - 2:28; d2t04 Another Star: 8:31 - end; d2t05 announcement: all. Late show: d3t02 What You Won't Do For Love: 6:46 - end; d3t03 Do I Move You?: 0:00 - 0:07; d3t06 When The Hunter Gets Captured By The Game: 5:17 - 6:00; d3t10 It's No Use: 5:17 - end; d3t11 announcement: all. Patching was done using Adobe Audition. All individual patches were speed and level matched to the main source prior to patching with crossfades. As the patch source was recorded using automatic level control, level flucuations were present [particularly during the announcement/crowd/tuning sections]. These have been smoothed out as best as possible. In addition, a couple of digital clicks were filtered out: d2t01 Fast Tone: 12.15; d2t02 Ain't That Lovin' You: 1:53. Finally levels were raised by 2.2dB and the entire show retracked. Discs 1 & 2 are seamless. PsyKies - - February 3, 2014.

! e-t04 (1) Eldon or someone close to the taper yells out "How 'bout 'Expressway To Your Heart'? ... Just once!"

! P: e-t06 FT nice bass-led interlude late 11 - John was playing so well in this period.

! song: "What You Won't Do For Love" (l-t02): Ron Stallings on vocals.

The Group Probably Will Be Short-Lived, Because Hopkins Has Other Contractual Obligations

The titular line comes from an interview Garcia gave ca. November 22, 1975 to a Twin Cities journalist, Jon Bream, and references JGB #1. It could be that this was true all along, and the plan was just to monetize the Jerry Garcia name in the new Band, as well as Nicky's name, for the couple of tours the band did in October and November 1975, and then to call it quits in the new year. That's not how the conventional narrative, deriving from Blair Jackson's interviews with John Kahn, has it. The conventional narrative has it that Nicky was just too much of a wreck and was cut loose, the implication being that the band ended before John and Jerry had initially planned.

The quote is consistent with either story. It could be that this was always the plan, but no earlier interviews elicit the information. But it's also possible that by Thanksgiving Jerry had had enough with Nicky, and the "contractual obligations" were the musical equivalent of "irreconcilable differences" in marriage settings and "spending more time with the family" in political ones.

Anyway, the November 22, 1975 show at the St. Paul Civic Center Theatre was a very long one, something like three hours of music, and was mostly captured in a totally beautiful recording by Greg Overlid which especially picks, without much beyond air in the way of mediation, the play of Jerry's fingers and strings. The "Let It Rock" shows off Nicky's virtuosity, "Russian Lullaby" benefits from a peppy tempo, and there's a singleton goof with "Blackbird" as well as either a single or rarity, noted in one of the reviews, of "Old Man River", composed by Jerry's namesake Jerome Kern.

But the show, on this listen, doesn't slay me. The closing medley of "Let's Spend the Night Together -> Edward the Mad Shirt Grinder" was the band's big, huge jam vehicle, and as it goes, usually so goes my assessment of a JGB #1 gig. In this case, it never really achieves escape velocity, so I find myself a little disappointed, overall.

LN jg1975-11-22.jgb.161mins.aud-overlid.141918.flac2448

Jerry Garcia Band
Civic Center Theatre
143 W. Fourth Street
Saint Paul, MN 55102
November 22, 1975 (Saturday)
Greg Overlid aud, unlineaged cassette copy flac2448 shnid-141918

--set I (8 tracks, 81:43)--
s1t01. //Let it Rock// [taper moves seats]
s1t02. Blackbird tuning jam -> Positively 4th Street [11:55] [0:07] %
s1t03. tuning [1:02], All By Myself [8:45] % [0:02]
s1t04. [0:09] They Love Each Other :10-
s1t05. Pig's Boogie
s1t06. tuning and Nicky Hopkins intro (1), Mississippi Moon
s1t07. Sugaree
s1t08. [0:17] Roadrunner [11:44] (2) [0:11]

--set II (7 tracks, 91:28)--
s2t09. tuning [1:30], How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) [6:19] [0:09] %
s2t10. Catfish John [11:07] [0:07] %
s2t11. Russian Lullaby [8:35] [0:40]
s2t12. Friend Of The Devil
[MISSING: Lady Sleeps > Ol' Man River {suspected setlist location}]
s2t13. Mystery Train
s2t14. I'll Take A Melody
s2t15. tuning -> Let's Spend The Night Together ->
s2t16. Edward The Mad Shirt Grinder [11:15] [0:18]

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia Band #1
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Nicky Hopkins - piano, vocals;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-b;
! lineup: Ron Tutt - drums, vocals.


! Recording: symbols: % = recording discontinuity; / = clipped song; // = cut song; ... = fade in/out; # = truncated timing; [ ] = recorded event time. The recorded event time immediately after the song or item name is an attempt at getting the "real" time of the event. So, a timing of [x:xx] right after a song title is an attempt to say how long the song really was, as represented on this recording.

! JGC:

! map:


! venue: Band itinerary calls it "St. Paul Civic Center Theatre". Contract cover page also says that, as does contract p. 1. That satisfies me: I am changing the last word of the venue from "Arena" to "Theatre".

! db: (s1p aud shnf); (3 source compilation); (this source, flac1648); (this fileset).

! band: Jerry Garcia Band #1 (

! preview: Minneapolis Star, November 7, 1975, p. 9B

! listing: Minneapolis Star, November 18, 1975, p. 4C

! preview: Minneapolis Star, November 20, 1975, p. 6C

! review: Bream 1975, Anthony 1975

! historical: Price $5.50 pre-show/ $6.00 day of show. Cloudy day, high temperature of 37 degreees. JGB guarantee of $5,000 plus $1,250 for lights and sound. Anthony identifies capacity crowd, ca. 2,900, but boxoffice says 2,628, a sellout, gross of $14,454. I had a larger capacity for the room, over 4k, but no source for that info. Promoter John Ballard/Edgewood Agency had taken a bath on the 4/75 Legion gig in Milwaukee, I think, asked for good terms; Zippy didn't want him to cry over spilled milk.

! R: field recordist: Greg Overlid

! R: field recording gear: 2x Shure 545 microphones > Nakamichi 550 cassette deck

! R: field recording location: front row

! R: first digital circulation of 3 songs from set2- CFJ, RL and ITAM (27 mins of new music)

! R: missing first notes of Mystery Train patched with SHNID-138733

! R: taper notes: "The Jerry Garcia Band / Garcia / Hopkins / Kahn / Tutt / St. Paul Civic Theatre / Saturday, November 22, 1975 / Nakamichi 550 w/Shure 545's / Sandy / "Tex" / Joey / Greg / Rhesa  / Dikel / S & Ggg get stage passes / get in before general admission crowd /  get us front row seats / not 10-15th / pulled out at end of first number by usher / talked to John Ballard, prom. / missed 1 to 1-1/2 min. Let It Rock / 1 to 1-1/2 limbo / Nicky Drunk!! /  DUBS: Buddy & Nancy / Stu K. / Rhesa / Jeff S./ Russ F./ Dave P. / Jeff C./ Joe S. / Steve B."

! R: lineage: From the collection of Jeff Knudsen. Recorded by Greg Overlid. Archived & Transferred by Tom Markson. Critical Assistance by John Wenzel, Andrew F. and Joe Jupille. Speed Correction by Jason Chastain. Edited and Mastered by Jamie Waddell, 24 bit 48 kHz.

! R: provenance: Jeff Knudsen has been an avid Jerry Garcia, Grateful Dead and San Francisco Sound music fan for over 40 years. From a letter to Dead Relix Magazine asking for help cultivating a tape collection, Jeff developed a relationship with Dick Latvala and many other tapers, building an enormous music collection.  He also taped many Jerry Garcia shows at venerable institutions like the various Keystones. Jeff loved to share tapes in a twinkle of an eye.  He was a key player in leaking the Betty Boards back in the day.  A few years ago, he decided he should pass his collection on to someone who could properly archive and transfer.  After a few years of offering it publicly, there were no takers. In 2008,  Arizona LL members Jamie and Tom felt the Knudsen collection was too valuable to let go.  After a flight so bumpy that we almost cried, and a great visit, albeit too short, with Jeff... 1200 lbs of tapes, gear and cds were lovingly packed at his Florida homestead.  The next era of his beloved collection summer camp for the tapes in the desert... an ongoing process of cataloging and transferring the contents to share.  Born from decades of Jeff's passion for live music collecting and the archival efforts of many, it's an honor and a privilege to share the Knudsen Tapes with you.  Enjoy! originally shared at"

! R: this is a really pretty tape. The finger-string interplay is directly audible, and it sounds sweet! Over and over again, strings directly recorded, nothing between them and the mics but air.

! R: s1t01 LIR clips in, cuts out; taper moves seats after the tune. Nicky very prominent - love it! The end cut is a COD.

! P: s1t01 LIR comes in amazing, Nicky truly doing the virtuoso thing right out of the gate. Jerry is filligreeing a lot, matching Nicky who continues to just play some beautiful stuff.

! s1t06 (1) JG: "Nicky Hopkins on piano".

! s1t08 (2) JG "...take a break"

! P: s2t10 CJ some great glassy picking by ol Jer.

! P: s2t11 RL I love this peppy tempo.

! P: s2t15-16 LSTNT > Edward never really achieves escape velocity. Tutt does a little drum feature late 7 of Edward, which is uncommon and neat.

No Sellout on Cape Cod: JGB, May 28, 1983

LN jg1983-05-28.jgb.all.aud-huston.141978.flac2496

I have a bunch of listening notes to catch up on, but I have been holding back maybe because I don't find myself with much to say.

Saturday night, May 28, 1983 at the Cape Cod Coliseum, JGB #15b lays down a characteristically strong show. It doesn't knock my socks off like 5/31/83 does, but is of a piece with its characteristically hot, fluid, dextrous guitar playing from our sweaty hero, over the band's solid groove. Nice tape from a taper I hadn't heard of before, Rudy Huston. Almost $60k gross on 5k tickets in a room that could have held 7,200.

Jerry Garcia Band
Cape Cod Coliseum
White's Path off Route 6
South Yarmouth, MA 02664
May 28, 1983 (Saturday)
Huston MAC flac2496 shnid-141978

--set I (6 tracks, 52:49)--
s1t01. How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) [8:09] [0:05] %% [0:29]
s1t02. They Love Each Other [8:00] [0:42]
s1t03. Knockin' On Heaven's Door [13:20] [0:10] % [0:10]
s1t04. I Second That Emotion [10:49] [0:02] % [0:10] %
s1t05. /Gomorrah [#5:49] ->
s1t06. Run For The Roses [4:42] (1) [0:11]

--set II + encore (6 tracks, 77:35)--
--set II (5 tracks, 69:36)--
s2t01. [0:06] Rhapsody In Red [9:43] [0:27]
s2t02. The Harder They Come [13:58] [0:07] % [0:06]
s2t03. Don't Let Go [16:33] [0:43]
s2t04. Dear Prudence [13:51] ->
s2t05. Tangled Up In Blue [12:47] (2) [1:16]
--encore (1 track, 7:58)--
s2t06. Midnight Moonlight [7:52] [0:06] %

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia Band #15b
! Lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! Lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! Lineup: Melvin Seals - keyboards (Hammond B-3 organ);
! Lineup: Greg Errico - drums;
! Lineup: Jacklyn LaBranch - vocals;
! Lineup: DeeDee Dickerson - vocals.


! Recording: symbols: % = recording discontinuity; / = clipped song; // = cut song; ... = fade in/out; # = truncated timing; [ ] = recorded event time. The recorded event time immediately after the song or item name is an attempt at getting the "real" time of the event. So, a timing of [x:xx] right after a song title is an attempt to say how long the song really was, as represented on this recording.

! JGC:

! band: JGB #15b (

! map:


! ref: Billboard, June 18, 1983, p. 48. 5,144 tickets sold on 7,181 capacity (no sellout), tickets $11.50, gross $59,829.

! seealso: JGMF, "I sing the blues, where has it led?," URL

! R: field recordist: Rudy Huston

! R: field recording gear: 2x Beyer M160 > Nakamichi 550

! R: field recording media: Maxell UDXL-XLII

! R: Transfer: Cassette Master  > Nakamichi CR-7A >  > wav 24/96 - Transferred by Charlie Miller

! R: Lineage: wav 24/96 > Adobe Audition 3 > iZotope RX6 Advanced > iZotope Ozone 5 Advanced > CD Wave > TLH > Flac 24

! R: seeder notes: Tape pauses and flips patched, I also patched on some crowd at the end of each set as they ended rather abruptly.  Source used shnid 108657 - Thank Steve Rolfe and Charlie. Thank you Joe B. Jones for help with pitch correction, I used the above mentioned source on which Joe advised to correct this one. Thanks to Rudy Huston for this source. Thanks to Charlie Miller for yet another fine transfer. edited and mastered SIRMick May 2018

! R: this is a truly excellent tape.

! P: s1t01 HSII great enthusiasm. Hard to pinpoint specific moments, but this is just strong all the way through.

! R: s1t05 Gomorrah clips in.

! P: s1t06 RFTR is going a mile a minute. Compare this to the 4/20/94 version I listened to not long ago, which is super sludgy.

! s1t06 (1) JG: "We're gonna take a break for a few minutes. We'll be back a little bit later."

! P: s2t01 RIR voice is already a little shot, but late 4 he leverages some extremely thick guitar tone, and starts shredding 5:20 or so, absolutely piling notes on top of each other e.g., 5:40. Man, this is another strong guitar performance from our hero, who is in bad physical shape but playing like a man possessed. Still making really inventive choices 6:30ff, plenty of vision and power.

! P: s2t02 HTC pretty extraordinary fluidity in this guitar playing - remarkable.

! R: s2t03 DLG brief tape munch near start

! P: s2t03 DLG messes up first verse. Late 4 over 5 is good example of him giving the vocals some oomph, in interplay with his guitar. Contrast 4/20/94. 14:30 Jerry does a totally unique little progression. Very good DLG.

! P: s2t04 DP also messes up first verse of this one. But some very nice guitar work 8ff, among other places. Huge weaving figures over 9, crowd appreciative, moving up the fretboard 9:20, some stellar guitar work here.

! s2t05 (2) JG: "Thanks a lot"

! R: s2t05 somewhere this turns to pre-encore tuning, etc., but it's cross-faded, and I don't care to time it

Sunday, July 01, 2018

True Confessions in Hartford

In November 1977 and January 1978, Relix published a two-part interview with Garcia. I am looking for copies of these interviews. Anyone got 'em? Your list gets mine.

Hall, John. 1977, 1978. Jerry Garcia: True Confessions in Hartford, parts 1 and 2. Relix vol 4, n.6 (November 1977), pp. 20-24 and January 1978.

While I am at it, I have a long list of sources I am looking for, which follows the jump.


RoG and LIA have both provided tons of help - thanks gents!

Let me here just ask about a few particular publications.

The Aquarian - anyone familiar with this? Looks like a New Jersey alt-weekly, around since 1969. There must be some Dead and Jerry content in there.

Good Times - this is the Long Island entertainment paper, not the San Francisco Good Times (counterculture newspaper). The New York version looks very promising from the two pieces I list below, both ex post accounts or reviews of Garcia shows. Looks like it has been around since 1970. I'd love to gain access to a trove of these, older than what I find online.

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Fare Thee Well

I just read Joel Selvin's latest, Fare Thee Well: The Final Chapter of the Grateful Dead's Long Strange Trip. I have seen many Deadheads bashing it, but I thought it was just fine.

For better or for worse, but probably not surprisingly to readers of this blog, I haven't paid much attention to the post-8/9/95 goings-on. I saw one Phil and Friends show in Sunrise, Florida, ca. 2002, for which I had great seats, like 5th row center, and found it utterly uninteresting. I saw half a RatDog show at some point at the Tower Theater in Philly, but we got sleepy and bailed. As a result, I don't have any particular emotional investment in any of this, and no real baggage - I think that's to the good, allowing me a dispassionate assessment of what Joel has written.

Phil and Jill Lesh of course are the real villains of the story. Weir seems like he just wants to play music, and I am frequently struck by how Garcialike he is in that regard, and in terms of having (possibly somewhat corresponding) substance demons. Mickey is a mad polymath, Kreutzmann likes to chill in Hawaii and play with good players, but he's kind of a slacker with a temper. None of it particularly moved me.

Joel sort of constructs a triumphant ending to the whole thing, which is fine. Again, I don't really care about any of this except insofar as it sheds light on Garcia, and it does some of that. We knew he was the center of the whole GD operation, but without reading this it's not clear how much his gravitational pull kept everybody else away from each others' throats, sublimated their own petty rivalries within the greater benefit of being able to keep being near Jerry. I suspect there were a lot of petty jealousies toward Bob's especially close relationship with Garcia, but we don't really get any particular insight into each man's relationship with him. That's fine, that's not what the book is about, and few who remain (even fewer willing to talk) probably have any particular insight into those relationships, in any case.

The GD scene was ugly and petty enough with Garcia around, and, while it may have gotten even uglier and more petty after his death, it's not obvious to me that that's true. These are a bunch of incredibly talented men with their own ambitions, a number of them probably bona fide geniuses in their own rights, with amazingly deep connections that are profoundly human, with all that implies. I wish them all well, and hope they get to keep doing what they love to do for a long time to come, independently, together, or anything in between.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Mother American Night

Barlow, John Perry, with Robert Greenfield. 2018. Mother American Night: My Life in Crazy Times. New York: Crown Archetype.

This was an awesome read. By "hanging around with intent" (p. 71), Barlow managed to play a role in many of the most seismic changes to shake the postwar West, Forrest Gump with brilliance, vision and agency. In unadorned prose, he drops like a dozen lines that just had me marveling at his (and presumably Robert Greenfield's) way with words, and even more impressively his way with ideas.

His relationship with Garcia was rather fraught, and he doesn't pull any punches with him or the Grateful Dead scene. There's plenty here for the cynic. But this is the farthest thing from a tell-all or an exercise in score settling. He touches everything deftly, lightly, frankly and, it feels to me, the way it was (as JPB lived it).

This is a nice read, another reminder that the social world of the Grateful Dead (and the hippies, and the Sixties) was disproportionately populated with brilliant, amazing people who lived full lives doing important things. Two snaps up.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Enter Tom Fogerty

A couple of years ago I discovered this youtube content called "Goodbye Media Man", featuring video of Tom Fogerty, Merl Saunders, Bill Vitt, various studio engineers and others unknown to me, working on a track by that same title.

Here is the description (published October 9, 2013):

Tom was the original singer of the Blue Velvets and the Golliwogs, both of which evolved into Creedence Clearwater Revival. Tom Fogerty had the chops to be a star in his own right. Within the band (Doug, Stu, Tom and John), Tom was overshadowed by younger brother John, who's talent was clearly evident. "Goodbye Media Man", recorded in 1971, was Tom's first solo single after leaving Creedence. A great track with solid musicianship and hooks. To my knowledge, this is the first time this video has been posted. Tom left us far too soon, passing on September 6, 1990. Back in the day, he was a friend, and I miss him - Ken Levy, Brooklyn NY / Addlestone, Surrey England

I continue to be amazed at the material that continues to crawl out of the woodwork. It gives me hope for the Golden State Country Bluegrass Festival (GSCBF) film, among many other things. This post will pin down the metadata but also talk about how remarkable is the wealth of material we have available to study, across many different media - and why we get to enjoy that wealth.


Appears to be Berkeley, both at Fantasy Studios and at Tom Fogerty's professorial manse with a bunch of kids running around.


The video is only dated 1971. Recall that Tom Fogerty had announced on February 2, 1971 that he was leaving the lucrative Creedence Clearwater Revival over differences with the band's dominant force, his little brother John, and to spend more time with his four children.[1] We also know that the House That Creedence Built, the new Fantasy Studios facility at 10th and Parker in Berkeley, had come online right around this time. Local journo students Kathie Staska and George Mangrum ("KG") ran an amazingly rich column in the Hayward Daily Review starting in February, and got a tour of the new facility from the one and only Ralph Gleason, now working full time for Saul Zaentz at Fantasy.[2]

KG reported on March 11 that Tom had started work on his solo album.[3] Just after the solstice, on June 24th, KG reported that the record was done and was set for release the next week,[4] also noting that he'd be part of Merl Saunders's band for a release on the same label. So the video presumably features material from this late-winter to early-summer span. Intriguingly, a youtube posting of the "Goodbye Media Man" single associates a date of "the 17th of June 1971" with it:

With all of this, the studio film could come from anywhere between March and June, but I strongly suspect that the home material is from closer to June, as the single neared or achieved completion.

Forging The Garcia-Fogerty Connection

Our Hero comes up in the interview, and I think this comment sheds some light on the Tom Fogerty version of the Garcia-Saunders band.[5] Tom says

I only want to jam around right now and perform with as many people as possible. I’ve learned more about music this last month [i.e., May-June] from meeting other people than during the whole time while I was with Creedence ... One night, I just happened to go over to Keystone Korner. Merl Saunders had invited me over to hear him and Bill Vitt and Jerry Garcia, and within a week I was up on the stage with 'em. And, uh playin' with 'em, and at that point I decided that that was ... the kind of music that I wanted behind the song. It was within about three days that the thing came together with Merl.

When might this have been, exactly? Let's investigate. Jerry and Merl had played the following Keystone Korner gigs from the first Freddie Herrera - Jerry Garcia Joint through mid-1971:

Table xxx. Garcia at Keystone Korner, 11/25/70-6/16/71. Follow this link for a more complete table of Garcia's Keystone Korner gigs. Click image to enlarge.
Tom's narrative and the overall evidence best fits Tom having seen JGMS on 5/20/71,[6] and sitting in with them on Wednesday 5/26/71. This frame fits "within a week" from Tom's filmed reckoning, and I am pretty confident about the interval, if not the specifics. "Three days" from Tom is a little unclear to me, certainly could suggest it was other nights than the ones I pinpoint. So, why these?

This is going to get really convoluted, and, despite my best efforts, I assume it will be somewhat hard to follow. You can just take my word for it, or you can try to follow me into the data.

First, there is tape of 5/20/71 and 5/21/71, the first out of the Garcia Vault and the second locked away there. May 11, 1971[7] and these tapes represent the earliest-audible Garcia-Saunders performances (perhaps as many as eight months after they started gigging![8]), and they precede a four-month gap that audibly ends when Lou Judson becomes the second Marin County soundman to run PA tape of The Group in late September. The 5/20/71 tape escaped into the world because Garcia had it amongst his stuff when, ca. Christmas 1975, MG threw him out of Sans Souci --on which the couple had closed on ... May 5, 1971!-- and he shuffled off to Deborah's for the first time. Debbie took possession of the tape and let a few people copy it, and now anyone can hear it.

Second, I submit that the fact that Jerry had this tape amongst his personal stuff is not innocent with respect to the very question we are considering. I think he had the tape "pulled", either initially recorded or pulled out of wherever most of his tapes were kept, or both, precisely so Fogerty could give it a listen. We know the Dead were in the habit of pulling recent tapes to prepare their incoming members, e.g., the "Houseboat Tapes" of August 1971 that they gave Keith Godchaux to listen to. I think Jerry lent it to Tom or dubbed it for him so he could come up to speed with the band and its material.

Third, and with respect to the late boundary, I glean one other possible tidbit of information from the table above, in the advertising patterns. I am almost certainly over-reading this, but the Thursday-Friday-Saturday 5/20-22 run looks like Big Nights - advertised in the Chron, weekend shows, some real buzz. Even Tuesday 5/25 gets a Wasserman mention, which may well have been enough to sell the gig out. But 5/26, Wednesday, gets a measley mention in the Trib's "Bay Sounds" items, which usually ran more toward jazz and soul. Probably a much quieter night for Tom to step up and play some for the first time, dontcha think? I can't adduce all of the evidence here, but it is as close to an Iron Law as exists in the Garciaverse that new players are broken in off-nights, off-the-beaten-path, or both.

Art and Commerce

For Garcia of this vintage, the aesthetics of any musical choice should go without saying. He wanted to play more music with good players than the Dead could afford him (especially in this very fallow period between the closing of the Fillmores East and West). As Corry and I have elaborated, Tom Fogerty advened alongside huge changes in The Group's approach and repertoire, from spacey organ jazz to all kinds of Americana, white (The Band's "Dixie Down", Jesse Winchester's "Biloxi", some good ol' rockabilly), black (Stevie Wonder, Motown, etc. etc.) and everything in between, mostly more or less contemporary stuff. In short, I think Fogerty came in because Jerry wanted to sing some tunes, wanted to bring in more white contemporary, and Fogerty could sing, play rhythm guitar, and bring in some new material.

But there were almost surely also commercial logics operating here, too. Whether they came from Jerry, from Merl, from Tom, from Saul Zaentz (or Ralph Gleason), and/or others, I can't know. But Fantasy Records stands at the center of this.

Indeed, I want to revise my conjecture above about why the May 20-21, 1971 JGMS tapes were made. This was long before Rex and then Betty started taping Jerry, so why is there this one pair of shows? I said a few paragraphs ago that it was so Tom could bone up. I think that's half-right – it was so Tom could bone up, and Tom joining this operation cannot be separated from Tom making records for Fantasy, Merl making records for Fantasy, etc. etc. Remember that Merl invited Tom down to the club. He might have had a purpose in mind - say, to make a Group for Jerry that would record on Fantasy and make them all rich, what already wasn't, and them richer what already was. Corry and I have concluded that Fogerty's arrival served a sea change in the Garcia-Saunders aggregation, taking it from space organ to Dylan, Band and Motown numbers. Why this big artistic shift? Quite possibly, to work up some more commercially viable material than the "out-there" jams they had been doing. Hooteroll? (Douglas 5, December 1971) would cover the space-organ piece of the market for the jazz heads, while The Group could do some white and black contemporary tunes for the dormitory set. It's all made to order, including an eager press. Indeed, two days after writing about Fogerty's upcoming release, our intrepid collegians K and G found themselves at the New Monk in Berkeley, where Tom, Merl and Jerry were holding forth for a standing-room-only crowd, just blocks from Fantasy.[9]


I feel quite confident, though not certain, that Tom Fogerty first sat in with JGMS on May 26, 1971. I also think Fantasy Records was the Prime Mover behind this partnership.

Now, Garcia and Tom did end up on Merl's Heavy Turbulence (Fantasy 8421, 1972), which looks to me like it could have been recorded in 1971, and Fogerty's Excalibur (Fantasy 9413, October 1972) which, though seemingly released later, feels roughly contemporary. Merl's Fire Up (Fantasy 9421, 1973) feels more like 1972, though of course it's pretty hard to say. But Fantasy's big golden goose feast, 1973's Live at the Keystone (Fantasy F-79002), featured the Fogertyless quartet of the aforementioned goose plus Merl and the Kahn-Vitt rhythm section. As best we can tell, Tom left the fold at the end of 1972 after eighteen months with The Group. What happened? I dunno, but I welcome your speculations in comments.

[1] “Tom Fogarty [sic] Leaves Creedence,” San Francisco Chronicle, February 3, 1971, p. 42.

[2] See also Staska and Mangrum 19710225.

[3] Staska and Mangrum 19710311.

[4] Staska and Mangrum 19710624.

[5] I have written at length around all of this. See "Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders at the Matrix - A Dialogue" (with Corry Arnold), URL; "Jerry Garcia & Merl Saunders & Tom Fogerty Sat-Sun, New Monk", URL; and "Tom Fogerty, Merl Saunders and Friends - June 25, 1971 Keystone Korner", URL

[6] See "'JGMS 5/20/71' is probably really JGMS 5/20/71," URL

[7] See "JGMS: Matrix, May 11-12, 1971," URL; "'Hey Merl, you wanna do that tune in 'G'? Get spaced out a little?' LN jg1971-05-11.jgms.partial.aud.28784.flac1644," URL

[8] "When did Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders first play together?" URL

[9] Staska and Mangrum 19710701.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Triple-Booked Vassar: October 6, 1973

My post on Old And In The Way in Santa Cruz on Friday, October 5, 1973 referenced some of the band's contemporaneous gigs. One of these was a gig the next night in Berkeley.

In comments, I then noted that Vassar was advertised with Tut Taylor that same Saturday at the Exit/In in Nashville, whereupon commenter extraordinaire runonguiness pointed me to Andrew Bernstein's California Slim (2013, p. 139), which published a handbill showing Jerry, Vassar and the OAITW crew at Homer's Warehouse that same night.

So, ex ante, Vassar was triple-booked this night.

While I haven't checked for the Tut Taylor record that was being recorded this night, there is no tape of any OAITW, alas. But, thanks to various miraculous institutions (the concert review) and technologies (microfilm), I happen to know he and Jerry and the rest played the Berkeley gig, because Len Lyons (1973b) evaluated it in the next week's Berkeley Barb. He loved Asleep At The Wheel, which opened, and he admired Vassar, but he had little but contempt for Jerry's banjo playing and OAITW's whole style. I paste the review below.

Mr. Lyons was no Garcia fan. A few months earlier, he had excoriated the recorded-for-Fantasy July 10, 1973 JGMS gig (see, among others, here, here, here and here), urging readers, "Don't bother buying the record. Five years from now, you may be hearing it for free over Safeway's MUZAK system" (Lyons 1973a). He was, as I say, not a fan.

Maybe someone is headed to Rome

Nice to see one person (via blogger stats) checking out possibilities for Free Caravaggio!

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Stinson History

Stinson Beach Music Scene Time Line: 1960s to the Present

The site above was just brought to my attention. I can't find an email for anyone in the organization based on a cursory search, so I thought I post some reactions here.

The prompt for all of this is the newly digitized source for the OAITW gig at the Stinson Community Center on September 30, 1973, same source tape as an older source I have sketchily blogged. I haven't had time to look back at this in detail, but I also want to pin Corry's post on an early OAITW gig at a Stinson Beach bar.

The point of this post is to post some corrections and ask some questions about entries in the Stinson Historical Society page that heads the post. If anyone knows any of the principals and wishes to draw their attention to the corrections, they might be interested.
“Blows Against the Empire” and “Mexico” (1969) - Jefferson Airplane
Recordings for BATE started in July 1970, just to be clear. Not sure what the Stinson connection is supposed to be here.
1970 – Peter Rowan moves to Stinson Beach from Mill Valley, where he had been playing in bands such as Seatrain and Earth Opera. Also recently been spending time playing with bluegrass legend Bill Monroe. He moves into a house on Calle del Ribera and pays $100/month in rent. He ends up writing one song inspired by Stinson Beach: “Riding the Rainbow in the Sky,” which was never released on a record.
The liner notes to Breakdown say PR arrived in Stinson Beach in October 1972.
8/27/71 - Jerry Garcia and others play at the club known as “The Red Whale,” which is located where the current Stinson Beach Water County District is located on Highway One just past the turn off for Calle del Arroyo. It would later be renovated and renamed “The Brigg.” Still later, it would be renovated again and renamed the “Over the Hill Bar and Grill.”
Mmmmm, a specific date which I don't have. I would love to know the source of this information! In the meantime, I will add it to my spreadsheet. I am presuming this would be the NRPS warming up earlier in the day before gigging at the Longbranch this night, but of course I can't be sure.
One rumor has it that the only time Jerry Garcia met John Lennon was during this time period in Stinson Beach.
Sounds familiar, but I will pin this possible crossing here.
Autumn 1972 – Jerry Garcia & David Grisman play bluegrass music several times, with Jerry practicing his banjo whenever he can after they bumped into each other at Ed’s Superette as Garcia was buying cigarettes.
I thought the story of their hooking back up in Stinson was that Pete Rowan walked Dawg (or vice versa) up the hill to Garcia's. This doesn't rule out that they bumped into each other at Ed's Superette, of course.
January 1973 – ... After playing at “Avila's Barn,” Jerry Garcia names David Grisman "Dawg" after he saw dog following Grisman on the beach at Stinson.
Avila's Barn doesn't ring a bell to me, though I bet that if I check Corry's "unknown bar" post it's mentioned there.
1973 [sic] - Goldie Rush starts Round Records above Ed’s Superette in 1973
First, the name "Goldie Rush" was new to me, and it shouldn't be, because apparently she was heavily involved in Round Records. Second, though, 1973 is too early, at least for "starts" in any formally institutionalized sense. Round Records was incorporated in the state of California on January 22, 1974.
1977 [sic] – David Jenkins (guitar) and Cory Lerois (keyboards) move to Stinson Beach, both members of the band Pablo Cruise. Lerois buys Mountain Girl/Jerry Garcia’s old house, and does a major remodel.
No. This was early 1978.
1979/1980 – The band “The Edge” is formed by Lorin Rowan, Mark Stein, Jim Dillon, Keith Glanz and Ozzie Ahleve [sic]
Correction: last fellow's name is Ozzie Ahlers.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Jerry's Guitar Style

Where most rockers tend to push against the beat to build excitement, using a vocabulary of riffs that has come largely from the blues and Chuck Berry, Mr. Garcia constructs lines that float over the top of the rhythm.
! ref: Palmer, Robert. 1977. Dancers Rock to Jerry Garcia. New York Times, November 29, 1977, p. 44. re: JGB 11/27/77 Palladium

Friday, May 18, 2018

Insert Pithy Title Here: JGB at Keystone Palo Alto, November 12, 1983

Killer "Don't Let Go", and two short sets that foreshadow darker days ahead. Great job on the matrix by AF!

Keystone Palo Alto
260 S. California Avenue
Palo Alto, CA 94306
November 12, 1983 (Saturday)
*Matrix* shnid-141451

--set I (5 tracks, 42:18)--
s1t01. [0:21] How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) [7:06] [0:25]
s1t02. Catfish John [10:07] [0:07] %
s1t03. [0:08] Simple Twist Of Fate [11:11] [0:15] %
s1t04. [0:05] Cats Under The Stars [7:24] ->
s1t05. Run For The Roses [4:59] (1) [0:08]

--set II (4 tracks, 47:36)--
s2t01. Rhapsody In Red [9:08] [0:13] %
s2t02. [0:13] Knockin' On Heaven's Door [13:20] [0:11] %
s2t03. Don't Let Go [16:03] ->
s2t04. Deal [8:12] [0:16]

! lineup: Jerry Garcia - guitar, vocals;
! lineup: Melvin Seals - organ;
! lineup: John Kahn - bass;
! lineup: David Kemper - drums;
! lineup: DeeDee Dickerson - vocals;
! lineup: Jacklyn LaBranch - vocals.


! Recording: symbols: % = recording discontinuity; / = clipped song; // = cut song; ... = fade in/out; # = truncated timing; [ ] = recorded event time. The recorded event time immediately after the song or item name is an attempt at getting the "real" time of the event. So, a timing of [x:xx] right after a song title is an attempt to say how long the song really was, as represented on this recording.

! JGC:

! db: (Corley MAC, shnf, not in circulation); (4th gen sbd, shnf); (MSC flac); (unattributed* MAC flac); (Corley 4th gen flac); (this fileset).

! map:


! band:

! P: overall: two relatively short sets. I have been engaging the 90s a bunch lately, and sets were typically running 60-80 minutes. We aren't into Jerry's Rock Bottom period just yet, IMO, but short sets were a leading indicator. That said, while I didn't note anything particular from set I, the Don't Let Go in set II is outstanding, with all kinds of modal jazzy spacey goodness, and overall, as I say of Deal, the show makes up in enthusiasm what it sometimes lacks in precision.

! R: Sources: Matrix of SBD ID-25629 & AUD ID-141450.

! R: Transfer: WAV > Wavelab > CD-Wave > TLH > FLAC 1644 tagged, Andrew F 03/2018

! R: Note: Gaps in the SBD source back-filled with Corley AUD portions taken from ID-22512; How Sweet It Is 0:00 > 4:22, and Rhapsody in Red 8:34 > 8:49.

! R: What a great matrix. The sbd is flat as a pancake, all vocals no guitar, the aud is all guitar and drums, no vocals.

! s1t05 (1) JG: "We're gonna take a break for a fe minutes, we'll be right back."

! P: s2t01 RIR is energetic.

! P: s2t03 DLG this is really good. I can't pinpoint many specifics, but it's very jazzy and nicely spaced out. Late 15 again, but all throughout, this DLG spilled over with great ideas, then a true segue into Deal. Nice

! P: s2t04 Deal the Elmer Fudd vocals out of the gate are not great. He seems to skip a turn at a verse in the 3 minute mark, gets right to the guitar playing, which is strong. It's a little sloppy here and there, with Jerry just charging ahead and forcing various and sundry drummers and vocalists to adjust on the fly, but what it lacks in precision it makes up in enthusiasm.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Jerry Has Fallen, and He Can't Get Up

OK, maybe I am feeling a little bit cranky. I have been doing some late era listening, and it's not always easy.

Wednesday, April 20, 1994 at the Warfield, for example, has a "Don't Let Go" - which is good! - but it falls into quite a remarkable rut. From 3:22-6:03 of this lovely Vasseur tape, he sings "Hold me tight and don't let go" no fewer than thirty times, by my count. Now, if he were embellishing more, if he were varying his vocal attack, if he were pairing it with guitar expressions, I would, in principle, be fine with that. He'd be feeling it. But, in this case, he seems to be feeling a little lost, a little stuck. There is a bit of variation in how he sings the line, but not much. There's almost no interplay between the voice and guitar, which could make "Don't Let Go" from any era pretty compelling, since it's not something he did much of on any other song. It's like he's trying to remember how he exits into the jam part of the song, but can't bring it forth.

The show's not as bad as 8/14/94. Married about nine weeks to Deborah Koons, he played "Get Out Of My Life Woman" with some nice burn and real conviction. But the penultimate "Señor" suffers for lack of steady drumming, and in any case the "tail of the dragon" is smelling dangerously strong at this point, so perhaps best to put it to bed. The closing "Midnight Moonlight", I note, "is a little hard to hear."

Jerry Garcia Band
The Warfield
982 Market Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
April 20, 1994 (Wednesday)
Vasseur shnid-141480

--set I (7 tracks, 65:07)--
s1t01. [0:14] I'll Take A Melody [10:59] [0:54]
s1t02. Get Out Of My Life Woman [9:23] [1:41]
s1t03. Forever Young [10:50] [0:23]
s1t04. Run For The Roses [5:50] [0:15]
s1t05. Ain't No Bread In The Breadbox [10:22] [0:04]
s1t06. My Sisters And Brothers [3:58] ->
s1t07. Deal [9:56] (1) [0:09]

--set II (6 tracks, 74:36)--
s2t08. Shining Star [21:31] [0:23]
s2t09. Think [8:09] ]0:10]
s2t10. Señor [7:34] ->
s2t11. Don't Let Go [14:49] [0:39]
s2t12. Mississippi Moon [8:35] ->
s2t13. Tangled Up In Blue [12:40] (2) [0:06]

! ACT1: JGB #23
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, v;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! lineup: Melvin Seals - keyboards;
! lineup: Donny Baldwin - drums;
! lineup: Jacklyn LaBranch - backing vocals;
! lineup: Gloria Jones - backing vocals.


! Recording: symbols: % = recording discontinuity; / = clipped song; // = cut song; ... = fade in/out; # = truncated timing; [ ] = recorded event time. The recorded event time immediately after the song or item name is an attempt at getting the "real" time of the event. So, a timing of [x:xx] right after a song title is an attempt to say how long the song really was, as represented on this recording.

! JGC:

! db: (Vasseur shnf); (this fileset).

! band:


! map:

! R: field recordist: Chuck Vasseur

! R: field recording gear: 2x Neumann KM54 > DAT

! R: Transfer: DAT Master > CDR (Kyle Porter); Extract: CDR clone > EAC > WAV > FLAC16 (Bill Shaw aka Shark)

! R: Source Notes: "Sometime in the early 2000's, Chuck loaned Kyle all of his 92-95 JGB masters to transfer to CDR. Kyle "mastered" the DATs to CDR, fading in/out as needed, adjusting levels (as needed) and tracking. Kyle then gave Chuck his masters back, with nice CDR copies of all of it. Chuck offered to clone the entire set for me, so I gave him a spool of 100 blank MITSUI CDRs and the next time I saw him, he gave them back to me, filled with his JGB recordings. Many of the Chuck V. JGB recordings do circulate already, but probably not all
of them, and those that do may not be the Kyle Porter transfers. So, Here they are! --Shark"

! R: tape sounds so great

! R: s1t01 ITAM splice 0:32-0:43, repeated section, a bit missing. Lame.

! P: s1t01 ITAM 3 range he is just making sounds, having forgotten the words.

! P: s1t02 GOOMLW the vocals are low but the guitar is nice and grungy, e.g., in the 4-minute range. Nice playing. Crowd stoked 5:40ff, and for good reason - good stuff. Melvin feature 6:35ff.

! P: s1t03 FY he puts the pitch-bender to work 7:49ff. DB doesn't really know how to end it, but they get there.

! P: s1t04 RFTR sounds half-speed

! s1t07 (1) JG: "Back in a little while."

! P: s2t10 Señor Donnie doesn't seem to know how to drum for this. Nothing much happens in this version.

! song: Señor (s2t10) penultimate version of this song (4/25/94).

! P: s2t11 DLG he doesn't really know the words. In 4 he's just repeating "hold me tight and don't let go" without much interesting vocal variation or guitar accompaniment, so it just feels a little stuck. I count thirty iterations between 3:22-6:03, which would be fine if he were embellishing, mixing it up. He is a little bit, on the margins. But mostly it just feels like he's fallen into this rut, and he can't get up.

! P: s2t12 Miss Moon is a little hard to hear.

! s2t13 (2) JG: "See ya later."

My First Dead Show

Now available in all kinds of good sound, including this 24 bit / 96 kHz pure sbd from Charlie Miller.

This show was the first time in my life that I felt utterly unjudged by those around me.

A Second Triumphant Return: JGB, Halloween '92

LN jg1992-10-31.jgb.all.aud-vasseur.141463.flac1644

Almost six years to the day after Jerry's "Triumphant Return" from death's door with the Garcia Band at the Stone, on October 31, 1992 he made a second comeback from a major health scare, playing with the JGB in the less homey Oakland Coliseum Arena less than three months after collapsing at home that summer.

I don't have time today to put it together, but in the book I will follow the redemption (1991 through 8/1/92) - fall (8/3/92) - redemption (10/31/92) narrative that the media built up for Jerry over a scant year or so. Of course, a longer, slower, and final fall would follow all of that. But these are things for me to try to tackle another time. For now, just some listening notes.

Bottom line: yes, Jerry sounds glad to be back. There are some fine moments, and almost no bad ones. It was probably fun to attend, and 14,000 fans did so - twenty times more than the teary-eyed who packed the Stone six years prior. 10/31/92 circulated relatively early from decent soundboard tape, adding to its popularity. The "Tangled Up In Blue" was selected for official release on Garcia Plays Dylan, which is a little surprising, but no big deal. "Ain't No Bread In The Breadbox" is the real surprise, totally shredding, and well warranting its officialization on Shining Star. "Werewolves Of London" was always fun, and Halloween is always a good time. But this is a good, not a great, Garcia Band show. Oh yeah, and the handbill is surprisingly lame - I guess BGP was still figuring things out after Wolfgang's demise almost a year to the day prior to this gig.

Jerry Garcia Band
Oakland Coliseum Arena
695 Hegenberger Road
Oakland, CA 94621
October 31, 1992 (Saturday)
Vasseur shnid-141463

--set I (7 tracks, 54:49)--
s1t01. How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) [6:28] [1:20]
s1t02. Stop That Train [7:12] [0:40]
s1t03. The Maker [6:34] (1) [0:53]
s1t04. You Never Can Tell [6:54] [0:31]
s1t05. The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down [9:10] [0:05] %
s1t06. Lay Down Sally [7:08] [0:05] %
s1t07. Deal [7:35] (2) [0:15]

--set II + encore (9 tracks, 8 tunes, 79:31)--
--set II (7 tracks, 71:35)--
s2t08. dead air :05, //Shining Star [#11:45] [0:29]
s2t09. And It Stoned Me [7:14] [0:23]
s2t10. Ain't No Bread In The Breadbox [9:45] [0:38]
s2t11. What A Wonderful World [8:03] [0:44]
s2t12. Tore Up Over You [7:38] [0:48]
s2t13. Waiting For A Miracle [5:46] [0:26]
s2t14. My Sisters And Brothers [6:03] ->
s2t15. Tangled Up In Blue [11:40] [0:08] %
--encore (2 tracks, 1 tune, 7:55)--
s2t16. ambience [0:54]
s2t17. Werewolves Of London [6:53] (3) [0:09]

! ACT1: THE Jerry Garcia Band (JGB #21b)
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - guitar, vocals;
! lineup: John Kahn - bass;
! lineup: Melvin Seals - keyboards;
! lineup: David Kemper - drums;
! lineup: Jacklyn LaBranch - backing vocals;
! lineup: Gloria Jones - backing vocals.


! Recording: symbols: % = recording discontinuity; / = clipped song; // = cut song; ... = fade in/out; # = truncated timing; [ ] = recorded event time. The recorded event time immediately after the song or item name is an attempt at getting the "real" time of the event. So, a timing of [x:xx] right after a song title is an attempt to say how long the song really was, as represented on this recording.

! JGC:

! db: (Schoeps MK4 shnf); (sbd shnf); (s2 Schoeps CMC54); (Litzenberger MAD); (s2 unknown taper Schoeps CMC34); (same source as shnid-97988, complete); (mtx of shnid-13230 and shnid-102196); (DTS of shnid-13230 and shnid-102196); (Dupree aud); (this fileset).

! band:


! map:

! official: Jerry Garcia - Garcia Plays Dylan (Rhino, R2 73263, 2005) (d2t04-TUIB); Jerry Garcia - Shining Star (Grateful Dead Records 4079, 2001) (d2t05-Ain't No Bread in the Breadbox).

! review: Laskey 1992. She notes the prelude: "Before his illness, Jerry seemed tired and unenthusiastic about playing ... it really seemed that his spirit was escaping him." She found this down "spunky" and enjoyed the show.

! expost: Dunham 1992

! R: field recordist: Chuck Vasseur

! R: field recording gear: 2x Neumann KM54 > DAT

! R: Transfer: DAT Master > CDR (Kyle Porter)

! R: Extract: CDR clone > EAC > WAV > FLAC16 (Bill Shaw aka Shark)

! R: Source Notes: Sometime in the early 2000's, Chuck loaned Kyle all of his 92-95 JGB masters to transfer to CDR. Kyle "mastered" the DATs to CDR, fading in/out as needed, adjusting levels (as needed) and tracking. Kyle then gave Chuck his masters back, with nice CDR copies of all of it. Chuck offered to clone the entire set for me, so I gave him a spool of 100 blank MITSUI CDRs and the next time I saw him, he gave them back to me, filled with his JGB recordings. Many of the Chuck V. JGB recordings do circulate already, but probably not all
of them, and those that do may not be the Kyle Porter transfers. So, Here they are! --Shark

! R: recording is strangely hissy, e.g., after STT. It sounds to me like there's a cassette gen here, but what do I know?

! P: s1t02 STT Garcia sounds nicely mournful and sincere in delivering his lines - "though I try | to do my very best | I can't seem to find | no happiness".

! s1t03 @ 7:05 (1) JG: "So ... how y'all doing?"

! s1t07 (2) JG: "We're gonna take a little break, and we'll be back in a few minutes."

! s2t08 SS cuts in

! P: s2t10 ANBITB Garcia shreds some 6:20ff. Interesting and powerful. Straining and pulling 6:50. I don't remember this song cooking like this. I see why it was officially released!

! s2t11 WAWW is the Louis Armstrong

! P: s2t14 MSAB he repeats the "this world is not our own" verse.

! P: s2t15 TUIB: I guess I can see why they chose this for the release - it's clean, and the last big guitar piece from 9:30ff presents some very thoughtful melodic ideas. It doesn't burn like some versions could, but it's clean and, for a couple of minutes, interesting.

! song: "Werewolves Of London" (s2t17). Jerry seemed to enjoy singing this Warren Zevon classic. The Dead did nine super-enthusiastic versions in 1978, including one allagedly mescaline-drenched version on May 11 and a growly, coked-to-the-gills classic at Red Rocks on July 8, both of which have been officially released. It came back with the Dead Halloween '85 in Columbia, South Carolina as a show opener out of space, the first of eight consecutive All Hallows Eve's appearances through 1993. I saw the JGB version in '89 and the Dead version in '90 in, appropriately anough, London - good times.

! P: s2t17 WOL Garcia does some uncommonly high pitched "whoo"ing after 6. This version never goes bonkers, but it's good.

! P: s2t17 (3) JG: "Thanks a lot. See ya later."