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Monday, September 05, 2011

August 9, 1974 is probably August 10, 1974: a fine show either way

 LN jg1974-08-09.jgms.s1s2p.aud-falanga.8073.shnf

More listening around August 1974, as with 8/11/74 and a mention of 8/15/74. Over at Hooterollin' Around, commenter nick noted the unusual song selections and how stretched out things are on this show, raising question if this might have something to do with trying on Paul Humphrey at drums, for example. I don't think so, as Paul didn't come in until 10/13/74, on my current understanding. But this is a helluva delicious tape.

Here's what TJS says:
I have some doubts about the date. The always-excellent "Rock Talk by KG" column (by Kathie Staska and George Mangrum) in the Hayward Daily Review (August 9, 1974, p. 40), says "Clifton Chenier does Keystone Berkeley tonight and Jerry Garcia & Merl Saunders with Paul Pena play the same place Aug. 10-11".

update 20110906: Man oh man, I am dumb as a bag of rocks. The setlist for this show is identical, with one exception, to the setlist given for August 10, 1974, Keystone, Berkeley at the Jerry Site. I believe that setlist comes from Rob Eaton, who transferred the master reels of this show from the "third batch" of Betty Cantor-Jackson tapes. Rob was forensic in his listening and in his tapebox notations. (Parenthetically, if those tapes reveal a three-song second set, we can of course eliminate the speculation that what's represented on the Falanga-Menke tape is incomplete.)

The only difference in the setlists of "8/9/74" and 8/10/74 is the placement of Think. Yet since it's surrounded by tape discontinuities on the Falanga tapes (chalk one up for OCD, me having notated these features!), it's just as plausible to think it was the first song, but somehow ended up out of place. (This would, in turn raise some lineage questions ... how could a master tape have the second song first? Sigh.)

Anyway, I am arguing here that the Staska-Mangrum mention, on the very day of the show, in addition to the (correlated) calendar listing in the Hayward Daily Review, and the identical setlists attributed to "8/9" and 8/10, the latter of which has a full setlist of impeccable provenance, all outweigh a tape label. We should eliminate the spurious Listing for August 9, 1974, and merge our data from that show with the show from August 10, 1974.

Listening notes follow. 

Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
2119 University Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94704
August 9, 1974 (Friday)
Louis Falanga's 140+ minute (s1s2p) audience recording

Field Recordist: Louis Falanga;
Field Recording equipment: 1x Sony ECM-270 + 1x Sony ECM-250 > Sony TC-152 cassette deck, unknown tape stock; microphones on-stage at Garcia's feet (stage ?right xxx left?), one directed toward Garcia's monitor and the other pointed to center stage.
Subsequent stuff: unknown transfer to DAT by Bob Menke; DAT > CD transfer ?ca. 2001? ?by Menke?; CD copy made for Jim Powell ca. 2001; CD copy made for Jack Warner ca. 2001; CD copy made for jjoops ca. 2001; extraction [EAC], re-joining [WavMerge], re-tracking [CDWave] and shn encoding [mkwACT] by jjoops, 8/14/2001. Subsequent circulation via vines and; shnid 8073. JGMF shn2flac conversion, file renaming (by sets), tagging (foobar2000) 7/20/2011.

--set I (7 tracks, 86:41, complete)
s1t01. tuning [1:14]
s1t02. Expressway (To Your Heart) [22:42] [0:08] % [1:06]
s1t03. [0:05] //Think [#7:54] [0:19]
s1t04. % [0:03] Are You Lonely for Me Baby? [25:06] [0:11] %
s1t05. tuning [1:49]
s1t06. Soul Roach [9:13] [0:34]
s1t07. I Second That Emotion [15:55] (1) [0:25]

--set II (3 tracks, 53:55, presumed incomplete)--
s2t01. [0:18] Mystery Train [17:54] [0:15]
s2t02. Lonely % Avenue [27:#08] ->
s2t03. How Sweet It Is [8:12] (2) [0:07]

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals.
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! lineup: Martin Fierro - horns;
! lineup: ?Bill Kreutzmann? - drums.


! 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.

! db: (this source).

! TJS:

! Dating. There is some conflicting information from the newspaper about the dating, but I kind of believe the tape in this case.

! personnel: I put question marks around Kreutzmann because all I know is that this is how things are conventionally understood. Since I don't know how reliable that conventional wisdom is, and in the absence of any other evidence, I'll just put question marks around it. Of course, we could say the same for Merl, Martin and John, but I can distinguish their playing well enough on my own to feel certain about them (and the other guy). Drummers, I just dunno. It could be Greg Errico for all I know.

! show: We presume that this set II is incomplete. Hard to say how much might be missing. The other shows from this month could be checked. This is definitely the end of the show. I wonder if there's a missing tape or cassette side? A half-hour or so, maybe?

! P: This show is excellent. There's more deliberateness than fire here, to my ears. So we have three exceptionally long (22-27 minute) numbers which actually stay pretty close to their constitutive themes for a very long time if not throughout. There's lots of elaboration and less exploration, maybe. Interesting. Jerry was in a mood to play and sing some old R&B this night, and that's what we have. "A Mission Street R & B guy," as I think he once described himself. Nice.

! R: What an amazing recording. Everything is right where you want it. Thank you Louis Falanga, Bob Menke and everyone else.

! s1t02 ETMH Martin quoting "Red Clay" from 7:40 for quite awhile, even still in the 16:30 range.
! R: s1t03 beginning of Think is mangled.

! s1t07 (1) @ 16:06 JG: "We're gonna take a break for a little while, be back in a little bit."

! s2t02 Lonely Avenue @ 5:57 Martin almost hits an "Ain't No Sunshine" riff.

! R: s2t02 Lonely Avenue gap @ 11:14-11:18

! P: the transition from Lonely Avenue to HSII is pretty smooth. Nice job!

! P: s2t03 this HSII reminds us of what a great bass player John Kahn was, when he was. Listen to him in the first 5 minutes of this. He is locked in.

! s2t03 (2) JG: "Thanks a lot. We'll see you all later."


  1. I just listened to this. I don't have expert ears, but I vote for Paul Humphrey as drummer, not Billy K.

  2. I'm finally coming back to this one (um, 4 years later? yikes) and given what's been made clear since then about when Paul Humphrey joined the G/S band, my money is on Kreutzmann for this one. I'm pretty sure now that it's NOT Humphrey, at least, and the drummer here sounds more like BK to my ears, compared with other shows from this period where it's clear that BK is drumming. That does nothing to explain the unusually long performances, though. Maybe they were just particularly loose tonight? I didn't think Expressway or Are You Lonely For Me sound particularly inspired (Expressway in particular sounds pretty, um, "loose"), but Lonely Ave is pretty fierce and is worth every minute.

  3. Hey Nick!

    I haven't revisited this, but, yeah, over the intervening years I think we have learned more about the timeline, not least with your ears on Humphrey's very distinctive style. I am about 99% sure Humphrey doesn't show up until October.

    I was thinking the other day about August '74, that I need to soak some of it in. I usually get some listening in around Thanksgiving.


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