This is great to hear.
Three points of historical interest.
1) Louis Falanga's onstage audience tapes are great documents.
2) Lots of interesting material including, here, some great jazz ("Valdez In The Country", "People Make The World Go Round", "Freedom Jazz Dance"), and a great rare (in the Garciaverse) Motown, "Ain't No Mountain High Enough".
3) personnel: Bill Kreutzmann had been drumming with JGMS since about November 1973, by my reckoning, and then, after 9/2/74, JGMS goes in another direction. Here we have Jim Nelson on a tryout, it would seem. Paul Humphrey would be present in Santa Cruz on the 11th and Santa Barbara on the 13th, and is presumed to continue through October. I think it's pretty well established that he was drumming for the Fall 1974 East Coast tour, though truth be told I have never seen a shred of hard contemporary evidence for that. It's "understood". I don't doubt it, but wouldn't it be funny if Jim Nelson were really the drummer in some of these slots?
Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
2119 University Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94704
October 4, 1974 (Friday)
Falanga-Menke shnid-8649 retrack shn2flac
--set I (6 tracks, 58:27)--
s1t01. //That's What Love Will Make You Do [13:43] % [1:43]
s1t02. Valdez In The Country [12:56] ->
s1t03. Space [1:54] ->
s1t04. People Make The World Go// Round [4:#10] [0:33] % [0:32]
s1t05. (I'm A) Road Runner [10:59] (1) [0:40]
s1t06. /It Ain't No Use [11:01#] (2) [0:16]
--set II (6 tracks, 54:07)--
s2t01. tuning [0:57]
s2t02. Tough Mama [7:34] [1:00]
s2t03. Freedom Jazz Dance [14:42] [1:22]
s2t04. Sitting In Limbo [11:41] [0:09] % [0:30]
s2t05. Ain't No Mountain High Enough [6:26] ->
s2t06. How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) [9:37] [0:08]
! ACT1: Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! lineup: Jim Nelson - 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
! JGC: https://jerrygarcia.com/show/1974-10-04-keystone-berkeley-ca/
! db: shnid-8649 (this fileset).
! map: https://goo.gl/maps/LDc43
! venue: http://jerrygarciasbrokendownpalaces.blogspot.com/2012/02/keystone-2119-university-avenue.html | http://lostlivedead.blogspot.com/2010/12/2119-university-avenue-berkeley-ca.html | http://lostlivedead.blogspot.com/2011/01/jerry-garcia-and-keystone-shows.html
! historical: Three points of historical interest. 1) Louis Falanga's onstage audience tapes are great documents. 2) Lots of interesting material including, here, some great jazz ("Valdez In The Country", "People Make The World Go Round", "Freedom Jazz Dance", and great rare (in the Garciaverse) Motown, "Ain't No Mountain High Enough". 3) personnel: Bill Kreutzmann had been drumming with JGMS since about November 1973, by my reckoning, and then, after 9/2/74, JGMS goes in another direction. Here we have Jim Nelson on a tryout, it would seem. Paul Humphrey would be present in Santa Cruz on the 11th and Santa Barbara on the 13th, and is presumed to continue through October. I think it's pretty well established that he was drumming for the Fall 1974 East Coast tour, though truth be told I have never seen a shred of hard contemporary evidence for that. It's "understood".
! personnel: Betty's reel notes that this is Jim Nelson on drums! I note lots of hi-hat, lots of quick stuff, and find that in general this guy is great, even as the group tries to learn how to play together. It's not entirely successful, but it is super-interesting.
! R: field recordist: Louis Falanga (?and Bob Menke?)
! R: field recording gear: 1x Sony ECM-70 + 1 x Sony ECM-250 Sony TC-152
! R: field recording location: onstage from stage left/house right. The sought-for setup would have been seated at Garcia's feet, one mic pointed into his stage monitor and one mic aimed at the rest of the band.
! R: lineage: unknown cassette master transfer by Bob Menke, ca. late 1990s, unknown process to CDx (Jim Powell) > CDx (Jack Warner) > CDx; re-tracked, shortened, and seeded by email@example.com.
! R: Utterly breathtaking. The vocals are nearly inaudible. We are getting them direct from Jerry's mouth from about 8-10 feet away or whatever, with no amplification. But Garcia's guitar is crystal-clear: this is the best example so far of the technique that Falanga and/or Menke used for these tapes, which was to directly mic Jerry's stage monitor and point another mic toward the center of the stage soundfield. His guitar has incredible tone and volume. The bass is also pretty loud and direct-sounding. Is it possible that what we are hearing is a kind of monitor mix for Jerry? Sorry, summing up: guitar and bass crystal clear and loud, drums real nicely present, keys and horns real low in the mix.
! R: s1t01 TWLWMYD cuts in; drums come up a little @ 9:20
! setlist: s1t02 "Valdez In The Country" originally given as "Boss Martin", per old Jerry Site nomenclature, changed 9/13/2009.
! P: s1t02 VITC Martin takes the first solo, and he is blowing beautifully. This song really suits him. Do we know whether it was him who brought it in to the band? The little thing Jerry and the drummer get together in the 11-min mark is really interesting. The drummer is doing some syncopated percussive stuff with one hand and a nice tight snare in the other. And Jerry really seems to respond. He's noodling low, but check right at the start of the 11-minute mark for some really, really gorgeous musical ideas from the Great Barcia.
! setlist: s1t03 Space is well-placed here. This is completely unmoored from the song, Valdez In The Country, out of which it oozed.
! s1t04 PMTWGR This version is absolutely classic, just how you want it to be: Kahn announces and starts it. Garcia swoops in @ 0:48 with the roundabout strumming he does in this tune ... but Merl wants to keep it spaced out for awhile, and I gotta say the drummer is right there with him. And who is Garcia to say no to some noodly weirdness? Thet let it bounce around for a minute or so, Garcia coming back to his strum @ 1:48, then Merl joins in with the melody. It's really, really nice because it's still really echoey and vibey, Merl using lots of reverb patience. Then the splice, though, and we are winding up. And we don't know what we are missing. Could have been legendary!
! R: s1t04 PMTWGR splice @ 2:29
! s1t05 Road Runner again shows the distinctive style of the drummer, Jim Nelson. Not so much high-hat here, but lots of quick, tight rolls. Guy can hit, all right, and these Holland/Dozier/Holland rollers are presumably pretty well encoded in all the players' respective hardwiring.
! s1t05 (1) @ 11:29 Nelson (presumed): "You guys are treating me rough, man." I think that's Jim Nelson speaking, and he's probably referring to them throwing him out there with a bunch of songs and just telling him to keep up! That's how it sounds to me, anyway.
! setlist: s1t06 "It Ain't No Use" previously known as "It's No Use", changed 9/3/2011.
! R: s1t06 IANU cuts in
! s1t06 (2) JG: "Thanks a lot. We're gonna take a great for a little while. We'll be back pretty soon."
! R: s1t08 there may be a brief splice during the tuning @ 4:28. Then the clear splice @ 4:43
! P: s2t02 There is some really grungy stuff happening off the keyboards, or is it saxophone? at the start of Tough Mama. Can't tell if someone's trying to get some of that, or if it's a bad cable somewhere. Goes away by 1:20. Jerry's vocals are also more audible on the tape here than they had been at the start of set I. Tough Mama gets a little loose for awhile toward the end. They are working on it.
! P: s2t03 old note: "I think they keep trying to end FJD, but they keep forgetting to tell the drummer." new note: That said, this FJD is profoundly interesting to me. I think this is outstanding. Yes, they should have ended it at 12:04. Everything from that point is a little wonky. Though the drummer is super-interesting, they just are not together 12:04ff. Try to end again 12:50, he misses it. OK! They all decide to do some stuff, Jerry playing some realyl plucky 13, Merl does a real nice run 13:08ff, very nice job Merl! Goes high 13:25, Jerry glassy sraping chunking behind him, Merl swirling up some goodies 13:45. Martin adding percussion 14:01. Then they hit it 14:42, so it was just those two misses in the 12 minute range, and then they made some lemonade with them in any case. Very good.
! R: s2t05 Ain't No Mountain High Enough static blip @ 2:40
! P: s2t05 ANMHE amazing to hear this. Great energy. Martin misses once early on, things are a little loose in terms of arrangement, but this has a great groove! 4:30 it is driving beautifully and Garcia does some incredible guitar work, splashy long threads on top of some killer rhythm with an amazing piece of American music at his fingertips. Great. Listen to Nelson drum 5:38! They pull a little minor decay to signal end ... I could have stood for it to go a little longer ... they let it melt and decay, lots of reverb, echoey space, closes to the echo that becomes HSII. Nice!