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Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Recently added to TJS, Saunders images

I am sure everyone who reads here knows one can follow changes at The Jerry Site (there's also an RSS feed). TJS admin slip_not has been adding some nice data from poster and handbill images shared at the Merl Saunders Facebook page.

Since these photos are shared intentionally downloadable from Facebook, and acting on the We Are All The Vault principle of crowdsource redundant storage, I'll repost here. Thanks to Merl Saunders, Jr. for sharing the pics and to slip_not for gathering 'em up and adding them to The List. I may have renamed them according to my own organizational schema. This post will just summarize some of this great stuff and elaborate as I can.

1.     JGMS: January 23-24-25 (Tuesday-Thursday), Boarding House, 960 Bush Street, San Francisco, CA, 94109

What a find!

Handbill for the Boarding House, January 16-28, 1973. Scan courtesy of Merl Saunders Facebook page.
 
“Jerry Garcia, Merl Saunders & Tom Fogerty” are billed at the Boarding House on a “special engagement: 3 nights: tue-wed-thu”, following the Herbie Hancock Septet (maybe working on some of the extremely heavy Sextant material?) and preceding Harry Chapin, every night’s menu featuring some kind of meat. Mmmm, yeah.

There are a few other bits and pieces in the evidentiary record around these gigs.

First, at least 1/23 and 1/24 were listed in the Berkeley Barb’s “Scenedrome” calendar (January 19-25, 1973, p. 28). Also, and I think somewhat unusually, there was a line ad in the San Francisco Chronicle/Examiner Datebook (January 21, 1973, p. 25). I don’t think it was that common for such ads to appear, but maybe I am wrong about that. I suspect that this “special engagement” was expected to generate some big nights (at least for midweek) for the Boarding House. I’ll ask again: does anyone know anyone who was involved with running the Boarding House during this time period? Or even know who it was?

Ad for Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders at the Boarding House, 960 Bush Street, San Francisco, CA, 94109, Tues-Thurs January 23-25, 1973. Source: San Francisco Chronicle/Examiner Datebook, January 21, 1973, p. 25.
 
There are also Betty Cantor-Jackson tapes known to exist and/or in circulation from this January 23-25 run at the Boarding House. All three dates were transferred by Rob Eaton from the “third batch” of Betty tapes which came to light in late 1995. At least one track from 1/23/73 has been officially released (“It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry,” track 1 of Jerry Garcia—Garcia Plays Dylan [Rhino R2 73263, 2005]). Material from the 24th (shnid 4492, “early show” | shnid 9783, “late show” | shnid 100216, early and late) and 25th (shnid 7670, “early” and “late” shows) circulated very early among collectors. They appear to have traveled several paths to the lossless era. Some of them are from DAT copies given by Eaton to Ryan Shriver, many of which were converted to CD and thence to .shn by D. Metz (e.g., shnid 4492). Others alleged to have PCM gens or cassette gens or whatever. A little hard to piece together all of it. The tapes are special because they are among the few that capture the mysterious Sarah Fulcher, singing her heart out.
The Jerry Site notes that Tom Fogerty was not present for the shows on the 24th and 25th, and he is not credited on the one released track from 1/23/73. I need to revisit the tapes, but I am pretty sure they’ll show that there’s no rhythm guitarist. SteveSw has written nice reviews of the 1/24/73 and 1/25/73 tapes at Workingman's Tracker. 

Anyway, this wonderful new-to-me handbill leads me to make a few points about the associated and related Listings.

First, unless it was understood that there were two shows nightly at the Boarding House, I don’t see any evidence in advertisements and such for early and late show designations. My assumption is that this makes it less likely that there were actually two (separately-ticketed) shows, but I am prepared to be set straight. Betty’s tapes said early and late, but maybe those temporal terms modified “set” rather than “show”? I don’t know. Anyway, I have been contemplating whether the early-late show listings should be merged on my lists … thoughts?

Second, there have long been tapes in circulation as “Boarding House, 1/26/73”), but all copies I have seen turn out to be the same as 1/24/73, which of course has more credible provenance. Anyway, again, I am preparing to consider 1/26/73 a spurious listing, but I’d like some feedback. (I am also thinking that 1/16/73 is spurious, probably a mislabel of the 1/26/73 mislabel, but I am not sure I have looked in the various listings yet.)

Upshot: I am contemplating merging the 1/24 and 1/25 early/late listings as I list them, and also dinging the 1/26/73 listing. Thoughts?

2.     JGMS: May 4-5, 1973 (Friday-Saturday), Homer’s Warehouse, 79 Homer Lane, Palo Alto, CA

Handbill for Homer's Warehouse, early May 1973. Photo courtesy of Merl Saunders Facebook page.


We knew about these shows from inter alia amazing tapes, but this handbill is a great artifact. Nice little sketch of Jerry and Merl, representing a “moment” that only one who had watched them having one could capture.

Just a few small notes. First, probably doesn’t matter, but I am always interested when I see Merl’s name first-billed. A nice project would be to go back and measure the frequency with which one or the other was listed first. I’d bet it was at least 80-20 Jerry, for the obvious reasons. Second, the address given on the handbill, 79 Homer Avenue, is incorrect: according to Corry, it’s 79 Homer Lane. Note to Corry: Google Earth returns a search on “79 Homer Lane, Palo Alto, CA” with “79 Homer Lane, Menlo Park, CA, 94025”). Is that the same place on earth as where Homer’s Warehouse stood?

Note that these shows has been discussed a fair amount at Workingman's Tracker (that was 5/4; see also 5/5/73, and that it appears George Tickner is the second guitarist present.

3.     JGMS: October 20, 1973, Fieldhouse, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA (UPDATE: DID NOT HAPPEN)


Poster for Merl Saunders, Bill Kreutzmann, Jerry Garcia gig at University of Iowa Fieldhouse, Iowa City, IA, October 20, 1973. Photo courtesy of Merl Saunders Facebook page.
What the fuck?

Wow.

OK. Here’s a poster that bills “Merl Saunders, Jerry Garcia, Bill Kreutzmann”, plus Mike Bloomfield and Band and Stoneground, at the University of Iowa Fieldhouse on October 20, 1973. The Grateful Dead had played Oklahoma City on 10/19 and would be in Omaha on 10/21, so Iowa City is only 250 miles out of the way. But, wow.

I notice the sketches of Jerry and especially Merl are nearly identical to the Homer’s Warehouse handbill sketches. Anyone know who drew these? Otherwise, is there any chance this is a forgery?

If not, we have here a real revelation. This would be only the third JGMS show outside of the state of California, after the September 5-6, 1973 gigs out east. And it’s pretty darn random, I have to say, though of course stranger things could certainly have happened. An off-night in a just-starting GD tour, you head out to Iowa City, Iowa for a gig in the college fieldhouse? Looks a little like the structure of the 11/18/73 San Diego show, I guess … could there possibly be others like this? Again: thoughts?

Update 20111119: thanks to intrepid research by Corry, we now know the story behind the poster: Liza Minelli left U of I out to dry three weeks before homecoming, Roberta Flack and Van Morrison couldn't be arranged to sub, and it sounds like the effort to get JGMS was extremely last minute. Most interesting is the argument in the relevant article from the student paper (Hawkins, Chuck, and George Shirk. 1973. Problems plague major concert bids. Daily Iowan, October 30, 1973, p. 3) that it was the Grateful Dead who nixed this particular Garcia side trip.

4.     JGMS: October 13, 1974, Santa Barbara County Bowl, Santa Barbara, CA
From L: Merl Saunders (keyboards), Paul Humphrey (drums), Jerry Garcia (electric guitar), John Kahn (electric bass), Martin Fierro (saxophone), Santa Barbara County Bowl, Sunday, October 13, 1974. Photo courtesy of Merl Saunders Facebook page.

Ain't life grand? We were just discussing Paul Humphrey at Hooterollin' Around, and up pops the only known-to-me live image of the Garcia-Saunders-Humphrey-Kahn-Fierro quintet. This is a known show Sunday, October 13, 1974 at the beautiful Santa Barbara County Bowl in Santa Barbara, CA. I can't tell if it's overcast, but I am imagining a sunny fall day. And if you ever spent a sunny fall day in Santa Barbara in roughly that that spot in roughly the frame of mind that might have been generated by this particular concert, you know what I mean to say: A glimpse of life's deepest beauties for five bucks.

This gig has been known back to the time of the McNally-Arnold JG List, the oldest continuous piece of The JG List in the manuscript tradition (Yeah, lots of grandiosity there, I know. But I have to say it and I'll get to it.) That list's entry was dated 10/13/74 and had the personnel correctly listed, but the venue was given as Santa Barbara County Fairgrounds. I see that this misstatement continued through to Deadbase IX (not surprising, since it was based on Corry's copy of the McNally-Arnold JG List). This continued into The Jerry Site's entry, which was corrected in 2008 by the great Ryan Shriver.

I am presuming this long entry derived from the following backstage pass, which is generously hosted at psilo.net:
Backstage pass for “Jerry Garcia/Merl Saunders and friends” with the Sons of Champlin and Etta James, Sunday, October 13, 1974, Santa Barbara Count Bowl, Santa Barbara, CA. Image courtesy of psilo.net.


There has never been a tape of the show, billed as “Their First Southern California Solo Appearance, Direct From San Francisco and the Grateful Dead”. I don’t actually think that’s true. They (JGMS) had played the Ash Grove in LA on May 29-30, 1973 and San Diego State University on November 18, 1973 (mentioned in a post on 2/16/74). But, I queeble. They weren’t getting out on the road much in those days, and it orta’h’ve been a fun old time. And, what a great picture!

Summary

Thanks to the proprietors of the Merl Saunders Facebook page, and to slip_not of The Jerry Site, for bringing these wonderful historical materials forward. Here’s hoping there’s lots more where that came from!

REFERENCE:
(1) Scott, John W., Mike Dolgushkin, and Stu Nixon. 1995. Deadbase IX: The Complete Guide to Grateful Dead Songlists.

GSCBF12: Ralph Stanley & His Clinch Mountain Boys: Snday, April 28, 1974, ca. 21:15

Part of a series of back-of-the-napkin thoughts about the Golden State Country Bluegrass Festival (GSCBF), held in San Rafael, CA from Friday, April 26th through Sunday, April 28, 1974. Click the link to see the posts in this series.

Now I see why I only had a draft of this post for a long time. I didn't ever finish my notes. I guess I'll update this at some point. Consider these some raw notes for now.


Golden State Country Bluegrass Festival
Marin County Veterans' Auditorium Building and Grounds
San Rafael, CA

<--John Hartford precedes-->

Ralph Stanley & His Clinch Mountain Boys
Sunday, April 28, 1974 ca. 21:15

Source: "Debbie reel 4/27/74" CD 4 of 4
Provenance: unknown sbd recording (?maybe MSC > C?) > reel
Transfer: AKAI GX 636 playback > Apogee mini ME @ 24/96 > Apogee Mini DAC (monitoring/mastering) > lynx one soundcard > wavelab 5.0 > CD, by Matt Smith.
Lossless encoding: EAC > CDWave > TLH (FLAC level 8).
Tagging: Foobar 2000.

(8 tracks, 16:40)
GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t01. % Cacklin' Hen -1:38
GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t02. Maple on the Hill -4:18 -4:23
GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t03. talk (1), band intros [2:27]
GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t04. Hemlocks and Primroses -5:21 -5:24
GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t05. Stone Walls and Steel Bars 1:50 -2:04 w/ mandolin
GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t06. Bill Cheetham -2:07 -2:19
GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t07. Nobody's Love is Like Mine 2:31 -2:40
GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t08. unknown_Stanley_19740428// [fragment] [0:05] %

Lineup:
Ricky Lee - guitar, bass vocals;
Cheryl White - bass;
Ralph Stanley - banjo, tenor vocals;
Curly Ray Cline - fiddle;
Roy Lee Centers - vocals.

Notes:
! % = tape discontinuity; # = truncated timing; // = cut song
! Recording is overloaded for the first few minutes
! Roy Lee Centers would pass away a week or so later, on May 5, 1974. The usual bass player, Jack Cooke, was unable to attend.
! not sure who plays mandolin
! GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t03 (1) last appearance on the festival this weekend
! GSCBF-1974-04-28-2115-Stanley-t08 fragmentary start of song
! It is not known how long this set lasted - the tape here runs out, and no Ralph Stanley material appears on any of the other sources for the Festival that I know of. This set was scheduled at a half-hour, so barring any other information let's assume that that's right, and that this is missing about 15 minutes of music.

<--Nitty Gritty Dirt Band follows-->

Jerry Garcia's Middle Finger
http://jgmf.blogspot.com/search/label/GSCBF

Monday, September 05, 2011

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 know. 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
Keystone
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 tol.etree.org; 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]

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

JGMF:
! 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: http://db.etree.org/shn/8073 (this source).
! TJS: http://www.thejerrysite.com/shows/show/1044
! 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."

LN jg1974-08-11.jgms.all.aud-falanga.6382.shnf

I wanted to listen around August 1974 a bit more, to see if there was anything else like the mystery trumpet player on "8/15/74". So I checked out 8/11. This strikes me as one of the weaker shows of this great month, though it's been so long since I listened to most of them that I can't be sure. "Ain't No Women (Like The One I've Got)" is the very interesting setlist rarity here.

Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
Keystone
2119 University Avenue
Berkeley, CA, 94109
August 11, 1974 (Sunday)

--Set I (5 tracks, 58:18)--
s1t01. [0:11]
s1t02. That's What Love Will Make You Do [12:52] (1) [1:49]
s1t03. La-La [16:49] [1:29]
s1t04. It Ain't No Use [10:36] [0:17] % [0:20]
s1t05. Mystery Train [13:24] (2) [0:11] % pre-set II tuning [0:18]

--Set II (5 tracks, 64:41)--
s2t01. The Harder They Come [18:59] [2:58]
s2t02. Ain't No Woman (Like The One I've Got) [16:38] [0:10] % [0:33]
s2t03. It's Too Late [8:48] [0:13]
s2t04. (I'm A) Road Runner [9:53] [0:02] % [0:25]
s2t05. The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down [6:00]

JGMF:
! 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.
! TJS: http://www.thejerrysite.com/shows/show/1080
! db: shnid 6382 (this fileset). Given lineage: "AUDMC (Bob Menke and Louis Falanga's Sony ECM-270 + Sony ECM-250 [onstage, one mic directly in front of Jerry's amp, the other pointed stage center to catch the rest of the band]  > Sony TC-152) > DATx1 > CD > EAC > CD > EAC > SHN; via Jack Warner. Extraction and compression via EAC and mkwACT by jupillej@mediaone.net." It's not clear whether both Menke and Falanga were there, nor whether this is the correct gear. Additional notes: "Disc/set one and the first three songs of disc/set two derive from a cassette master that was labeled 8/10/74. However, the music is identical to that found on an alternate source of 8/11/74, and the vault research as reported at the Jerry Site would seem to confirm 8/11/74 as the true date. The alternate source (AUDMC [unknown gear] > 1R > 1D > 2CD > EAC >  SHN) supplies the last two songs of disc/set two.  It is inferior sounding and may need speed-correction."
! R: seeder note: No flaws noted.
! R: A pretty stunning audience recording. Puts you there, for sure.
! R: set II sounds nicer?
! P: s1t02 TWLWMYD messed up start, but settles in.
! s1t02 (1) @ 13:00, Jerry: "Thank you."
! s1t03 La-La, song proper, ends around 15:52, then drops off into some real drippy, creepy space.
! setlist: until ca. mid-2011, s1t04 was known in Garcia/GD circles as "It's No Use". But the title used here appears to be correct, based on research by Eric Levy. See Alex Allan's entry for more information.
! s1t05 (2) JG: "We're gonna take a break for a little while. We'll be back a little bit later. Thank you."
! s2t01 @ 20:15 JG strums Ain't No Woman. @ 20:23 he asks something like "Wanna do that one?" and mentions "Ain't No Woman".
! s2 guess I don't have much more to say about this set. Ain't No Woman is a special setlist rarity, and I like it a lot.

LN jg1973-03-07.jgms.s2p-48mins.sbd-alligator.31501.flac1644

Update 4/22/2012: I have more or less concluded that the second guitarist is George Tickner.

Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
Keystone
2119 University Avenue
Berkeley, CA
March 7, 1973 (Wednesday)

--Set II (3 tracks, 48:42, partial set)--
t01. untitled 19730307 [19:59] [0:08] % [0:06]
t02. Merl's Tune [14:18] ->
t03. Georgia On My Mind [13:44] (1) [0:27]

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! lineup: George Tickner - el-g;
! lineup: Bill Vitt - drums;
! lineup: Sarah Fulcher - vocals.

JGMF:
! 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.
! TJS: http://www.thejerrysite.com/shows/show/927.
! db: shnid 31501 (this source). This is one of the mostly-uncirculated "third batch" of Betty Cantor-Jackson's tapes, which came to light around late 1995. Rob Eaton professionally preserved the tapes, many of which were seemingly-irredeemably water-damaged and filth-encrusted. Thank goodness he did. Tapes like this show us stuff that otherwise would be completely unknown. Eaton supplied DATs of these tapes to Latvala and/or the Garcia vault. It would seem that Lossless Legs user 'alligator', who shared these with the world, was indeed very well-connected.
! Given lineage: "MSR > DAT3x > Delta Dio 2496 > Soundforge > WAV > FLAC1644"; seeded to Lossless Legs by alligator.
! Seeder note: "There are some low volume digital pops that can heard during the quieter parts of the performance. They did not detract from me thoroughly enjoying this show."
! personnel: Garcia, Saunders and Fulcher are easy, and the little bass solo in Georgia On My Mind is almost certainly (p <. 05) by John Kahn. We can assume it's Vitt drumming, I guess. The usual assumption about the second guitar player is that it's Tom Fogerty, but I am not so sure. This guy (presumably) has better lead guitar chops than I am used to hearing out of Fogerty, though I confess to not always having listened as closely to him as I might have done.
! setlist: t01 is almost certainly a song with a name. This is the one with Jerry and Sarah singing, duet-style, as if to each other, "ba ba, ba ba, da dah". It's really nice. The vocals start up around 3:20 in.
! P: t02 second guitarist makes himself heard at  @ 1:02, then plays a hot solo from 1:15-2:35. This guy is good, and it strikes me unusual for someone other than Jerry or Merl to take the first solo. This guy is tearing it up. Can this really be Tom Fogerty?
! P: t02 Merl's Tune is in a really nice jam space in the 4-min mark, with Merl moaning, groaning, howling, burning. Very nice. Garcia tries to double-time it around 5:09, Merl swirling around, Jerry's saying at 5:20 that he has an idea and runs with it for a bit. There's a deep, screaming space in the 11-minute mark. Second guitarist is also then wailing around 11:20 for awhile. I'll ask again: Can this really be Tom Fogerty?
! P: t02 I think this version of Merl's Tune is fantastic.
! P: t03 Garcia is the one who drops them into Georgia On My Mind. Subtle, delicate, beautiful. John Kahn plays a beautiful bass solo in the 10-minute mark of GOMM. Right on, man!
! t03 (1) @ 13:55 JG "Well the light is on, as you all know. So ... we have to call a close to the evening's festivities." The crowd calls for more, or one more, and Garcia says "I know they're not gonna dig it" as he appears to call for "How Sweet It Is" with his guitar. I'd bet dollars to donuts they closed the show with HSII.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Reading Notes: Tolces, Todd. 1973. Jerry’s Bluegrass Boys. Melody Maker 48 (April 28): 35.

Tolces, Todd. 1973. Jerry’s Bluegrass Boys. Melody Maker 48 (April 28): 35.

A FEW POINTS TO EXTRACT:

First, I believe the interview material and show observations are from March 13, 1973 at the Keystone in Berkeley. He only mentions it as a quartet, so I doubt there was a fiddle player there. Here are setlist bits we get for this date:
  • Orange Blossom Special
  • Jambalaya
  • Panama Red ("halfway through set"; with Chris Rowan and Lorin Rowan on harmony vocals)
  • How Mountain Girls Can Love
Since we don't have any setlist information for this show at TJS, this should probably be added.

Second, we learn from Peter Rowan that the OAITW studio album was already in the can by ca. March 13, 1973. The idea that it was recorded by mid-March just blows my mind. Jackson (1999, p. 241) says OAITW "even cut an album at Mickey Hart's studio, though it was never released. 'We weren't too happy with it,' Grisman said. 'It was kind of rushed. It didn't seem to equal what we were doing live.'" (We then get the "one of the best-selling bluegrass albums of all time" quote about the eventual live OAITW record.) Not much to say except that these two observations (album cut by March, and "kind of rushed") would seem to fit well together. Let me here just reiterate my plea for any and all information/thoughts about the OAITW studio album. Let me also just note how contemporaneous this is with the whole Muleskinner project. Not sure what to make of that, just putting it out there.

Third, they were planning on doing "a few bluegrass festivals", but I have just reconsulted McNally (pp. 548-550, 554), and it looks like they just played the one (6/8/73 Whippoorwill festival in Warrenton, VA), according to him. That's where I am on the issue of OAITW at the summer 1973 bluegrass festivals, too. My question is, why didn't they play more than one, as Pete seems to have expected and as ads imply they were planning to some degree?

Fourth, tiny I know, we learn that Garcia was carrying his banjo around on the GD tour. Maybe we already knew that, but it's fun for me to think on.

Fifth, here their "theme song" is said to be a Monroe tune, "How Mountain Girls Can Love". Maybe this is some inside joke about Garcia's S.O. Mountain Girl (Carolyn Adams). No idea.

Anyway, reading notes after the jump.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

another mystery trumpeter: JGMS, August 15, 1974

There's a trumpeter playing on "Roadrunner", the last song of set I of the show known as "August 15, 1974, Great American Music Hall" through a tape made by Bob Menke and/or Louis Falanga. Listen to the first five minutes. Guy (presumably) is pretty good.

I will be doing a post on this show, about which I have some questions, and will be doing another roundup post on "Garcia's Unidentified Guests" (or at least the trumpet playing!). For now, just NB another trumpeter, ca. August 1974.