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Thursday, March 27, 2014

LN jg1982-03-27.jgb.all-1.aud-knudsen-GEMS.111727.flac1644

Gave this an anniversary listen today, and it pleasantly surprised me. There's an awful lot of depth of feeling in this whole show. Sugaree is very good right off the bat, and in the first set only "After Midnight" does less than it might have; I blame the arrangements, which just feel to cokey-80s for my taste. "Don't Let Go" is quite a rich and stellar version. It stands up very well to most any one I can think of from the period, and may be among the very top. Jerry's got lots of great ideas, but he's not at all in a rush. There are many imaginative and inventively packaged runs.

The first set is quite short for the period, I think (would need to double check) and the second set quite long. At least one person (see the historical notes below) remembers there being an exceptional number of Hells Angels present this night. There's no other evidence of that. But there is a feel to this show that cannot be pinned digitally, but that's nonetheless real. Much recommended.

Nice to have an audience tape to go with the crisp, long-circulating MSC>DAT copy, which lives in my brain as a "Kreutzmann tape". Same provenance as other '82 sbd tapes. I don't know any details and I am not sure about this stuff, but that's where I file it. This taper, Jeff Knudsen, was quite the wild man, taping a bunch of shows from this period blazing on acid on shore leave. He sometimes loses track of things, but the tapes are always fun and much appreciated. On this night, he records from the balcony. Not surprisingly, this gives the tape a much more spacious feel than what one mostly gets on Keystone tapes, from up front.

One last thing: it's funny I don't have a single image for this date. That'll be true for the 80s more generally. 80s shows were just in the old McNally-Arnold list, which for the period is evidence enough. Who wants to go back leafing through BAM every week to scan Keystone ads? I don't.

Jerry Garcia Band
2119 University Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94704

March 27, 1982 (Saturday)
Jeff Knudsen all-1 GEMS flac1644 shnid-111727

--set I (4 tracks, 31:07-0:09, missing ca. 15 minutes)--
s1t01. [0:06] Sugaree [12:59] [0:06] %
[MISSING: s1t02. They Love Each Other]
s1t03. //Love In The Afternoon [#8:06] % [0:02]
s1t04. After Midnight [9:16] (1) [0:20] % pre-set II [-0:09]

--set II (6 tracks, 82:15+0:09)--
s2t01. [+0:09] (I'm A) Road Runner [8:29] [0:02]
s2t02. Don't Let Go [22:25] [0:03] % [0:04]
s2t03. Russian Lullaby [12:47] [0:02] % [0:06]
s2t04. The Harder They Come [15:29] ->
s2t05. Dear// Prudence [12:#50] ->
s2t06. Tangled Up In Blue [9:24] (2) [0:04]

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia Band #14c
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - al-g, vocals;
! lineup: Julie Stafford - vocals;
! lineup: Liz Stires - vocals;
! lineup: Melvin Seals - organ;
! lineup: Jimmy Warren - electric piano;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! 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.
! TJS:
! db: (MSC, shnf); (this fileset).
! map:
! band: JGB #14c (
! venue: JGBP | LLD
! setlist: TJS has historically listed IARR as the end of set I. But here we can hear the setbreak announcement, after about 10 seconds of indecision and to the taper's consternation, after After Midnight. The now-presumed four-song first set is indeed a slap in the face The soundboard tape has the whole first set, which runs to about 44 minutes I think. Brutal. But redemption is always around the corner! On this night, he makes up for it with a long and quite strong second set. Need to check the timings of contemporary shows.
! R: field recordist: Jeff Knudsen
! R: field recording gear: Superscope Mics > AIWA HS-1 recorder
! R: field recording location: front of balcony
! R: field recoding media: 2x Maxell XL-II cassette
! R: transfer: 24bit/96kHz by Matt Smith
! R: mastering: Weiss-Saracon for 16 bit 44.1 kHz  TLH for FLAC8 SBE Free, by Jamie Waddell a **GEMS** Production  January 2011
! R: seeder notes: "-Huge thanks to Jeffrey for sharing his recordings and Matt Smith for the transfer work -Recorder Shuts off between some songs -Missing TLEO -LITA Cuts IN -Microphone static on a few songs"
! historical: Jeff Knudsen: "This show popped up out-of-the-blue. I got a phone call-- remember, there was no internet, no texting, no PMs, just the 'Pink Section' (if you remembered to look at it). My friend says, 'Didja hear? Fat Jerry gonna play Berkeley on Saturday.' 'GTF outta here-- only one night?' 'Yep' 'OMG!' (used to be called 'Oh My Gawd') So off we went. I just blew all my $$$ on Chico, Arcata and Garberville and now he has his hands in my pocket-- yet again!!
! R: historical: Jeff Knudsen: "Why is this show popping up now? Well, I got this email awhile back: 'You don't know me from Adam. I went to a lot of Keystone shows in 81 and 82. I actually met you several times through a guy named Howard who was present at that time as well.  And I know Matt [smith] who has been emailing you lately. I was wondering if you have or will ever post 3/27/82 from Berkeley? IMO it has one rockin Sugaree to open. I also remember this show because of the more than usual number of Hells Angels. they had taken over the upstairs portion of that venue and while they didn't say so, it seemed like no one else was allowed up there that night. maybe it was just something i ate but i recall it being quite tasty. anyway thank you for all those shows you got up and hope your well."
! historical: Jeff Knudsen: "Well--- here is it!  However I don't remember "Angels in the balcony", but of course I was dosed to the max and very busy in the front row of the balcony trying the push all those little tiny buttons! It is a miracle this recording came out so well. Guardian Angels fo' sho'."
! R: This is a really nice tape, at root, and interesting. It's interesting because there aren't that many balcony tapes from the Keystone that I can think of. I think Jim Wise may have been up there on 9/18/81. Anyway, it's a whole different feel.
! R: s1t01 static blast about 24 seconds in. Vox very distant, electric piano prominent. Bad buzz at 4:45, watch your speakers! Don't think that's PA, because there's no crowd reaction.
! P: s1t01 Sugaree Jerry takes an extra run around before start the lyrics, which come in around 0:50. Those were a nice fluid phrase he was putting together in that little warmup round. Jerry's playing is very articulate this night, even, first half o 6 min mark. Does some chunka-chunka-ing and starts swinging it more over the 7-min mark, it's the two things combined: the chunka-chunka for half a measure, then the melody part he played before that. So he's cutting each of the previous things he did in half, and pairing them. Good idea, Jer! Still soloing to late 7-minute mark, and he takes the next lyric right before 8. So I don't think anyone else has really featured yet, 'cept ol' Jer.
! R: s1t03 LITA cuts in, static for awhile
! P: s1t03 LITA drummer is doing some really interesting pounding in 1-2 mark. That BK? Sounds good.
! s1t04 AM is going too fast in this time frame, and the backing vocals are cheezy. This arrangement has a strong early 80s feel, and I don't mean that in a good way. If he were a little more appearance-conscious (and thinner), Garcia might be wearing a white suit, maybe sleeves pulled up to his elbows and a skinny black tie. Think early 80s Steve Winwood or, more relevant, Clapton look. Song finishes
! s1t04 (1) JG: "We're gonna take short break, we'll be back in a coupla minutes" --guy, maybe taper, yells "Aw, shit, man!" Crowd not happy. Then taper talk: "Hey, sorry to fuck up folks. Got microphone problems, y'have ..." %
! R: s2t01 IARR mic static 3:30ff for a while; static 4:30ff; 7:18ff bad static;
! P: s12t01-s2t02 this is very nearly a guzinta
! R: s2t02 DLG more static.
! P: s2t02 DLG there is something special about this setlist. I need to check when "Don't Let Go" was played this early in a second set. In the 7-minute mark, Jerry is in a really nice low register and this has a real nice swampy feel. Melvin fills beautifully behind Jerry. Long phrases, punctuated with plucking, now back higher, some sustain, then some speed. Garcia is writing beautiful lines here, great tone. This is powerful good in this 7-8 min range, still finding lots to say to 9, then strums some stuff early 9 to change the tone and color, not as low, but a minor feel, with all that tonal burn, he steps back and lets Jimmy play a little bit; Jimmy's not very loud, and he does some good stuff, but he's also pretty limited, I'd say. Melvin gets a little louder, Jerry steps in front of him 10:20 and starts scaling, some really nice playing and Bill sits right back where Jerry can lean on him. 11:02 sharp note. 11:17 Jerry's got his head down, now some fuzz on it 11:20 after Melvin had thrown a nice dart. Now getting higher up the neck late 11, Jerry finds a nice little line over 12, hits it three times and doesn't overuse it, nice. A different phrase 12:28. He is overflowing with good ideas this night and the band is tight. Can't hear John at all, but Billy has got the rhythm locked in. This is an outstanding DLG. Even when he comes back to the theme in the 20 range, he's still stretching out and saying interesting things. Not in a rush to get back to it. But, OK. Jerry sounds wrecked, but in not a terrible way.
! P: s2t03 RL this pacing is deep and swampy and outstanding! Jerry is deep in the groove already, which was the same space in which he ended DLG. He's really in no rush during this long second set. Excellent. Sounds like taper is hassling with people a little in the 3-min mark, he wants them to shut the fuck up or something. Meanwhile, Jerry is playing, no, channeling Irving Berlin. Crowd is really cheering John on, then 9:25ish Jerry steps back onstage and everyone starts cheering him on. One guys says "Turn it on, Jerry, break windows!" Jerry steps up right at 10, but he's not trying to break anything. He's playing carefully and thoughtfully. That's the kind of space he's in this night. Nice pluck 10:30.
! R: s2t03 RL static 2:58-3:18.
! R: s2t05 DP splice in the first minute, not much?
! S2T06 (2) taper: "That's how it was. Let me tell you, that's how it was."


  1. Great write up as usual! I'm only familar with the sbd and haven't heard this Knudsen recording yet, but I want to second your comments about this Don't Let Go. I also like this one a lot. To my ears, it's a rare example of this band actually taking their time and really feeling things out, rather than just locking & loading and blasting off. Melvin and Jimmy Warren both seem pretty tuned in to each other, which wasn't always the case either. The other DLG's from this period that stand out in my mind are 6/16/82 and 6/18/82 (both have a distinctly different flavor, imho), but this one is also top notch. Good call!

    Funny enough, though, I remember thinking that the After Midnight was one of the *better* things in the first set! (cheesy arrangement notwithstanding). ha. Goes to show...

  2. Thanks, nick. Yeah, I want to check out those other '82 DLGs, I can't say I have a firm sense of them. But I am glad you hear it, too. It's an unusually patient performance during a period that has too few of those.

    I *love* After Midnight, and this is not bad. I fudged my words - it's not as good as it could have been, IMO. Which would mean I have very high expectations!


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