Friday, December 30, 2011

By the Grace of the Lord: Legion of Mary at the Masonic Temple, Scranton, April 12, 1975

LN jg1975-04-12.lom.late.sbd-gems.117832.flac1644

Legion of Mary
Masonic Temple
420 North Washington Avenue
Scranton, PA 18503

April 12, 1975, 11 p.m. late show (Saturday)
sbd gems shnid-117832

--late show, 11 pm, main set + encore (7 tracks, 91:36)--
--late show, main set (6 tracks, xx:xx)--
t01. Let It Rock [12:27] [0:16] % [0:04]
t02. tuning [0:38], La-La [12:44] (1) [0:38]
t03. tuning [0:20], Boogie On Reggae Woman [16:18] [0:12] % [0:47]
t04. Mississippi // Moon [8:#20] [0:08] % [0:46]
t05. tuning [0:18], Going, Going, Gone [14:08] [0:51]
t06. Beer Barrel Polka [0:11] -> Mystery Train [12:49] (2) [0:58]
--late show encore (1 track, xx:xx)--
t07. crowd [0:03] % dead air [0:07], tuning [0:42], Tough Mama// [7:43#] % dead air [0:04]

! ACT1: Legion of Mary
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards;
! lineup: Martin Fierro - flute (t02, t05), saxophone, percussion;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! lineup: Ron Tutt - 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.

! Jerrybase:

! R: Ryan Shriver's note from TJS: "This is probably the most confused Legion of Mary show in circulation. The setlist above is what I believe to be the correct setlist for the Late show." Shriver was a pioneer in many things, including trying to sort out the mess of the tapes with this date. The setlist on this tape matches the TJS setlist until the alleged encore.

! db: shnid 4484 ("MSR > 1R > P > D > ZA/2 > SHN"); shnid 31479 ("sbd > reel > dat > cdr > cdwave > flac > wav > flac"); shnid 117832 (this fileset). The notes for shnid 31479 say "Unlike the other source in circulation (shnid 4484), there is no splice in Lala and Mystery Train does not cut at the end". Neither of these earlier sources has the Tough Mama that appears on the present fileset, though as elaborated below I am not persuaded that that song is actually from this show.

! seealso: JGMF, "Catholics Listing the Legion"

! Seeder Notes: "Lineage unknown, some imperfections and dropouts remain but this seems different than the other sources.  I hope listeners sort out the extra song, which sounds to my ears to be the band coming back for an encore, but I could be wrong. Happy Holidays 2011. *gems*"

! Seeder: "Fresh transfer of Archived SBD DAT from Thrak; Mastering by Jamie Waddell; TDK DAT > Tascam DA20 > Lynx2 > Wavelab7; WeissSaracon for 16bit 44.1kHz FLAC8 SBE Free."

! R: I had originally said "very nice Betty Board", but as of 2/1/2014 I no longer thing Betty was along for this tour. I do not know the precise provenance of these April 1975 Legion sbd tapes. I suspect that the lineage given on shnid 4484 is closer to correct than the alleged sbd reel > DAT label on the (later-created and -circulated) 31479, but I am not sure. I now believe that Kingbee obtained copies of the April 1975 LOM tapes independently, though things are hazy.

! P: t01 LIR some nice fanning descents in the late 10-min mark, some bending and running around, brief flurries @ 11:25. Nice, Jer!

! t02 La-La, can hear Martin counting it off to start. Nice.

! R: t02 drop @ track 4:07

! P: t02 La-La: The cheek-shaking screaming in the 4-minute mark strikes me as consistent with the proposition I have articulated re: Martin Fierro, namely that he got more forward, more or less continuously so, over the course of his time playing with Jerry and Merl. We talk a lot, directly or indirectly, about the respective personal, musical/artistic, professional and other circumstances/goals/ambitions/hopes/dreams of Jerry, John Kahn, Merl, the OAITW guys and so forth. But we rarely talk about Martin. OAITW struggled and reasonably quickly failed to integrate [the circumstances/goals/ambitions/hopes/dreams of] Grisman, Rowan and Garcia. Corry has analyzed post-1972 JGMS as an equilibrium between Garcia, Kahn and Saunders. But Fierro has been largely overlooked. I'll try to elaborate and speculate at some point.

! t02 @ 13:50 (1) Merl vocal mic check "Testing. Testing"

! t03 BORW: Martin on guiro at start, but blowing saxophone right in the first verse.

! P: t04 Mississippi Moon: tempos are off at first, because Jerry wants this to be really, really, really, really slow. They're on the same page by the lyric, but the first half-minute involves everyone else successively (repeatedly) cutting their tempos inhalf to slow down with Jerry. It's amazing how sweet Garcia's voice still sounded at this point.

! R: t04 MM brief drop/clip @ 6:37.

! setlist: Playing Mississippi Moon and GGG back-to-back really anchors the languid pacing of this set.

! t06 (2) JG: "Thank you. We'll see y'all later on." House music comes up @ 13:28 or so. Stage announcements, crowd cries out in dismay. This is a show-closing announcement, so it's correctly placed regardless of the status of Tough Mama.

! setlist: t06 Mystery Train is intended as the last song of the set.

! setlist: t07 Tough Mama: This Bob Dylan composition was first released on the album Planet Waves. I have contended about Going, Going, Gone --also from Planet Waves-- that Garcia liked the sound of the song (as played on record by The Band) as much as the lyrics. Wild speculation, but Robbie Robertson's guitar work is just so striking, so obviously worthy of listening to (repeatedly) and playing with ... and Garcia picked these songs up off the album and put them in his side-band repertoire so quickly ... this song just has a nice feel to it.

! setlist: The Lossless Legs seeder (*gems*) opened the question of whether "Tough Mama" is indeed an encore of the late (11 pm) show held at the Masonic Freaking Temple at 420 North Washington Avenue in Scranton, Freaking, PA 18503 on Saturday night, April 12, 1975. Let's evaluate, quickly. Pro1: here it is, labeled that way. Pro2: the room and recording, to my useless ears, sound very similar. Con1: Tough Mama is not on other tapes. Con2: Ryan Shriver (TJS) went forensically through all of these April 1975 tapes years ago. He said of 4/12/75b "This is probably the most confused Legion of Mary show in circulation", and his findings did not include a Tough Mama encore for thos show. Con3: Unless they took like 10 minutes warming back up for the encore and *really* got the crowd settled down, I cannot believe the minute or so of tape leading up to Tough Mama captures a Legion of Mary encore in April 1975. Now Scranton ain't NYC, but there were probably at least a few Deadheads in the audience who had taken the time to see Legion of Mary on this present tour or, as something like Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders (JGMS), during the November 1974 tour. Passaic 112 mi., NYC 121 mi., Upper Darby 122: not next door, but not impossible. Travel aside, many local Deadheads would be familiar with the Garcia-Saunders-Kahn-Vitt Live at the Keystone album from Fantasy. Things are way too sedate to believe that it's a late night encore of a tune from Dylan's Planet Waves. The Grateful Dead were "retired", or whatever they called it. The crowd sounds pretty rabid in the time after Mystery Train (t06), when the show appears to be ending. Folks are pretty worked up, and now they're really calm and quiet-like for the encore?. Long story short, the quietude of the crowd before Tough Mama (i.e., at the start of t07) seems incompatible with this being an encore for this show, at this time of night. It just doesn't ring true. In sum, while we are just dealing with a 9 minute tape fragment, I feel reasonably confident that this is not the encore for the 11pm LOM show on 4/12/75 in Scranton, PA.

! R: t07 Tough Mama cuts out.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

'Jerry, is it really ovah?' JGMS at the Bottom Line, November 6, 1974 (early show)

LN jg1974-11-06.jgms.early.aud-moore.117248.flac2496

Garcia’s first professional tour as a named headliner outside the Grateful Dead comprised twenty-one performances over the thirteen days between Tuesday, November 5, 1974 and Sunday, November 17, 1974, inclusive. The first three nights of the tour unfolded at the Bottom Line, 15 West 4th Street, New York, NY 10012, two shows per night. So much to process, I can only do the raw “listening notes” dump without much analysis.

Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
November 6, 1974 (Wednesday), early show
flac2496 of Jerry Moore audience recording

--Complete Early Show (8 tracks, 97:01)--
t01. crowd and tuning [2:08]
t02. Think [9:04] (1) [2:33]
t03. Valdez In The Country [12:58] (2, 3) [2:38]
t04. (4) I Second That Emotion [16:45] [0:22] % [2:49]
t05. You Can Leave Your Hat On [13:12] (5) [1:50]
t06. Someday Baby [9:32] (6) [1:02]
t07. Mystery Train [13:00] [0:15] % (7) [1:16]
t08. The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down [6:55] (8) [0:39]

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards, vocals;
! lineup: Martin Fierro - saxophone;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! lineup: Paul Humphrey - 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: shnid-6613 (uncertain provenance of same master tape); shnid-16807 (Moore's Masters 2003 seed of same master tape).

! R: "Recorded by Jerry Moore; 2x AKG D1000E > Sony TC-152; Transfer and FLAC encoding by David Minches: Master played back on Nakamichi Dragon > Korg MR-1000 (DSF [1-bit 5.6448 MHz Stereo]) Korg AudioGate > WAV [24/96] > Adobe Audition 3.0 > FLAC encoding. Speed/pitch Correction by Joe B. Jones. Thanks to Rob Berger for supplying the master cassettes."

! R: Provenance. Perfect provenance for a quite wonderfully wonderful recording. Quite simply, Jerry Moore was doing it right out on the East Coast. Garcia / GD fans owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to Jerry and everyone whose scene he shared. Thanks to all involved in getting this into my ears. Sard Thee Well, JM.

! R: quality: This is quite an excellent audience recording.

! Historical: Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders undertook their first out-of-state tour in November 1974. Opened with three nights, six shows at the Bottom Line in NYC. This is third show (second night, early show). NB Paul Humphrey drumming.

! t02 (1) crowd requests for Positively 4th Street, Expressway. 4th Street would be well-known in all kinds of ways to the crowd, not least Dylan and the fact that it appeared on the Live at the Keystone album (Fantasy F-79002, 1973). As the crowd member reminds Jerry @ 10:27, "You're playin' on 4th Street." Expressway To Your Heart [Allan | Scofield] is a little less obvious, though of course it did appear on Merl Saunders's Fire Up (Fantasy 9421, 1973). My point is that this is your typical smart (or at least knowledgeable), engaged NYC audience.

! P: t03 VITC comes out at a breakneck pace, much faster than it was played on other occasions. Merl's lead in the 8-minute mark is very nice. The high-hatting @ 8:26 is something that I think might distinguish Humphrey from any other contemporary drummers, as we try to sort out who's who on any given night. All of these guys were good --they *always* had good drummers-- but I love Humphrey's style.

! t03 @ 13:20-13:30 (2) taper talk: "turn 'em over" "90" ... Jerry and someone else (maybe Harvey Lubar?) are discussing the tape flip.

! t03 R: maybe a tape flip @ 14:13?

! t03 @ 15:10 (3) crowd guy, loud: "Jerry, is it really ovah?" @ 15:19 Jerry: "It's always been over, man."

! t04 (4) crowd member identifies "I Second That Emotion" right in time, and everyone gets a little extra jolt, band included.

! P: t05 You Can Leave Your Hat On: Garcia is playing powerfully and inventively in the 9-10 min range. This is some of the better deep jamming to have occurred in this song by this band. I also like the relatively brisk pace at which they play the song here. It took them awhile to figure tempos on the Merl lead vocals.

! t05 (5) notice the rambunctious crowd. Calling songs, all that. I hear calls for "Bertha" and "Like A Road", inter alia. “Like A Road” request suggests to me that this guy has spent some time with Garcia-Saunders-Kahn-Vitt Live at the Keystone.

! t06 (6) crowd requests: The Harder They Come, Turn On The Bright Lights (from the second Garcia album, colloquially known as Compliments [Round RX 102, released June 1974]).

! business: They certainly weren’t “touring behind” any particular record, except in Garcia’s rather circuitous way. But someone (not necessarily excluding Garcia, but presumably including Ron Rakow), somewhere, at some point, or several of each of these, conceived of this tour as a way to sell records. Notes (5) and (6) above remind me note only that Garcia had a stake in Round Records, but of Corry’s important recent work on the economics of the Garcia-Saunders-Kahn relationship.

! P: t07 Mystery Train the drummer messes up the tempo at the start, so Jerry has to play his 'lectric guitar for a few measures to get them set up for the verse, which comes in around 52 seconds in. It’s a nice minute of playing as they try to get things together.

! t07 (7) tune requests: Like a Road.

! t08 (8) JG: "Thank you. See ya all later."

Errico is a monster: JGB at the Rainbow, Denver, May 21, 1983

 LN jg1983-05-21.jgb.all.aud-unk.xxxxxx.flac1644

Jerry Garcia Band
Rainbow Music Hall
6358 East Evans Avenue
Denver, CO 80222

May 21, 1983 (Saturday)

--Set I (6 tracks, 52:29)--
s1t01. [0:17] Sugaree [10:54] [0:07]
s1t02. [0:01] % [0:10] I Second That Emotion [9:25] [0:13]
s1t03. [0:02] % [0:12] Simple Twist Of Fate [11:19] [0:10] %
s1t04. [0:05] That's What Love Will Make You Do [9:07] [0:13] %
s1t05. /Gomorrah [#5:06] ->
s1t06. Run For The Roses [4:52] (1) [0:10] %

--Set II (4 tracks, 43:19)--
s2t01. [0:14] I'll Take A Melody [12:58] [0:06] %
s2t02. [0:09] Tore Up Over You [9:37] [0:08] % [0:03]
s2t03. The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down [8:49] ->
s2t04. Tangled Up In Blue [11:05] (2) [0:07] %

! ACT1: JGB #15c
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: John Kahn - el-bass;
! lineup: Melvin Seals - keyboards;
! lineup: Greg Errico - drums;
! lineup: Jacklyn LaBranch - backing vocals;
! lineup: DeeDee Dickerson - backing vocals.


! Recording: symbols: % = recording discontinuity; / = clipped song; // = cut song; ... = fade in/out; # = truncated timing; [m:ss] = 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 [m:ss] right after a song title is an attempt to say how long the song really was, as represented on this recording.

! db:

! band: JGB #15c (

! R: Field Recordist: unknown; field recording equipment: 2x microphones embedded in the bandana around the brim of a cowboy hat > unknown cassette deck, unknown media; field recording location: unknown, presumed pretty close up; tape source: Ken MacKenzie 1st gen cassettes, acquired from taper ca. one year after the concert; subsequent genealogy: unknown cass/1 transfer to FLAC.

! R: Tape Story, from Ken MacKenzie: "The actual taper’s name is lost to history – I met him in line the morning of the show, sat next to him inside, listened to the tapes with him and his friend in their van after the show, groveled a bit, and received the tapes in the mail, like a year later.  The only other thing I remember about him was that his friend was wheelchair-bound and the wheelchair was their means of sneaking the recording equipment into the hall."

! db: shnid-91115 (1st gen cassette from Craig Johnson master); shnid-96908 (Bill Moran master).

! R: This master is distinct from and superior to both the Johnson and Moran tapes. Some of the superior (to my ears) sound may have to do with higher levels, possible speed differences, the brightness that comes from improperly decoded Dolby, or what have you. But this is fundamentally a better (and quite good) tape, seemingly made from a nice upfront spot. The Johnson master sounds more distant. This taper and Bill Moran were very close to each other. For example, in the run-up to I Second That Emotion (s2t02), you can hear the same exclamations, but from different locations. On the Moran tape, s1t01 @ 11:24, you can hear a guy say "All right" from a few feet away. On this tape, at the start of s2t02 (as tracked), you can hear the same guy, but he's speaking more or less right into the microphone. In brief, this is the best-sounding tape of the three.

! P: s1t01 Sugaree @ 7:45 some nice raunchy, metallic shredding by Mr. Garcia.

! P: s1t03 STOF: The bass solo in the 6-7 min mark is pretty good, and sounds really clear on this tape.

! P: s1t04 TWLWMYD is very punchy.

! R: s1t05 Gomorrah clips in.

! song: "Gomorrah" (s1t05): First electric version since 11/3/78.

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

! personnel: Greg Errico is an animal.

! P: s2t01 nice fanning flourish around 12:05.

! d2t04 (2) JG: "Thanks a lot. See ya around."

! Observations: This is a really punchy show, as most are from this period (see 5/31/83 and 6/1/83 for the hottest examples). Garcia's voice is in decline, but not terrible; his guitar playing is absolutely torrid. Greg Errico is a monster, really a big hitter. Everyone else seems pretty well on their game. This second set is quite short for the period - four songs, a paltry 43 minutes. I don't know if they started late and were up on time, or whether this is all they had, but it would have been disappointing.

Reading Notes: Constanten, Tom. 1992. Between Rock and Hard Places: A Musical Autobiodyssey. Eugene, OR: Hulogosi Press.

update 20120107: how could I have missed LIA's post "Constanten on Constanten"? Anyway, there it is, excellent as always.

Spent some time with this, mostly trying to get some more anchoring around Tarot, which has become quite a productive discussion in comments to my post on a "Rubber Duck Mime Band and Jerry Garcia" billing at Mandrake's in Berkeley on June 2-3, 1970.
A few drive-by take-home points for me.
  • Tarot still really confuses me, and especially the nature and extent of Garcia's involvement.
  • We have a Vince Guaraldi and a Howard Wales sighting. Regarding the latter, and based on the context, We can't rule out that he's talking about the GD-Wales encounter on Thursday, August 28, 1969 at the Family Dog at the Great Highway. But it's certainly before 2/1/70. Similarly, we get a data point on GD-Guaraldi that points to sometime before 2/1/70 for his sit-in(s) with the band.

Reading Notes, focused only really on GD/Garcia and points of interest to me, follow. (I.e., I am certainly not representing this as anything other than a data-mining and breadcrumb-establishing enterprise.)

Constanten, Tom. 1992. Between Rock and Hard Places: A Musical Autobiodyssey. Eugene, OR: Hulogosi Press.
Constanten 1992, 70: TC saw Warlocks at The In Room.

Constanten 1992, 70-71: saw GD 5/29/66, spent a few days staying with the band at Olompali.

Constanten 1992, 71: joined them in LA for studio work on Anthem, ca. November 1967?

Constanten 1992, 72: Pigpen, Tom Constanten and Nicky Hopkins hung out talkin' music in a hotel room at Woodstock. Sessions at Columbia Recorders overdubbing a vocal track for Alligator, TC in control room.

Constanten 1992, 74: returning to St. Louis early April 1969.

Constanten 1992, 75: Fillmore West acid spiked apple juice. “I remember Janis venting her high dudgeon at Owsley backstage that night – her trumpet player had got dosed. … When it came time for us to play, Phil’s bass was loosely draped over his shoulders and he was pushed onstage, muttering the while about the Fall of the Roman Empire. … I found Robert Hunter painted onto the stairs on our way out the back door. He and Pete Grant were then decanted into their respective back seats for the rid back home across the Golden Gate Bridge.”

Constanten 1992, 75: Bull Frog festival in Oregon.

Constanten 1992, 76: 4/28/71 he just happened to be in town because of the Tarot project.

Constanten 1992, 76: Dylan was in attendance GD 4/27/71.

Constanten 1992, 76: More NYC. Café a Go Go. Hey Jude encore at Fillmore East (2/11/69). Fillmore East. Woodstock. “a musically warm afternoon at the Central Park bandshell” (6/22/69).
Constanten 1992, 77: LA 1967 met Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who didn’t like the band’s name, wanted to call it “Everlasting Life”.

Constanten 1992, 77: “We were supposed to be the band in the movie Zachariah. It got as far as touring the MGM back lot, getting fitted for costumes, and impacting the script, but no farther.” NB movies.

Constanten 1992, 77: mention of Big Rock Pow Wow show. Playboy after Dark.

Constanten 1992, 77: “The band even went horseback riding as a group a couple of times out at Mickey’s ranch in Novato”. Helps to paint the Mickey’s Barn picture: not like they rode every day.

Constanten 1992, 78: 3/15/69 Black and White Ball. 

Constanten 1992, 78: TC had met Garcia 1962.

Constanten 1992, 78-79: Aoxomoxoa

Constanten 1992, 79-82: why he left the band. Mostly it sounds like there just wasn’t enough musical or auditory space for him.

Constanten 1992, 80: “comparing the problems more experienced players, like Vince Guaraldi and Howard Wales, encountered in interacting with the band, I began to suspect that some of the band members themselves didn’t have that clear an idea of the keyboard’s role in a guitar band context”

Constanten 1992, 81: “It was unsettling enough for Phil to pointedly remark how much he preferred Howard Wales’s playing when he sat in with the band. But what really hurt was his apparent insensitivity to the fact that Howie’s system was driving twice as many Leslie speakers as mine.”

Constanten 1992, 81-82: New Orleans bust, early 1970

Constanten 1992: notice that neither the narrative nor the information in the TC Base at the end of the book ever lists Garcia as performing Tarot live, or really involved with it in any way.

Constanten 1992, 84-89: whole Tarot story, but still quite hard to parse exactly who/what/when/where [OCR scanned .doc]

Constanten 1992, pp. 195-197 are the parts of “T.C. Base 3” which cover the years to Tarot [images scanned]. The GD data in TC Base have a number of known errors which I won't try to catalog.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

LN jg1974-08-24.jgms.all.sbd.10162.shn2flac

On Saturday, August 24, 1974, the Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders played the Great American Music Hall at 859 O’ Farrell Street, San Francisco, CA, 94109. I have written about this show once before, just to lay out a few contradictions around the date/venue combination, which I basically dismiss. I am of the view that this show happened as we have it in The Garcia List despite lots of other weirdness around the August 1974 record of shows (about both of which – The Garcia List, and August 1974 confusion—I will post before too long).

Here I report on what I hear through shnid-10612, a very nice soundboard recording from the First Betty Batch, taped by the incredible Betty Cantor-Jackson.

Tape Provenance and Quality

The etree copy is identified as 10" MSR > C > DAT > CD > EAC > SHN. It entered the lossless realm in around July 2002 via jjoops, who had received CD copies from Katy Miller. For reference, Eaton lists this date as follows: "08/24/74 Great American Music Hall, San Francisco Ca - complete; 4.6, 135min, Sbd, A1D0, Reel Master > Cass 1 > Dat 0, 48k; 7inch Master Reel @ 7.5 ips 1/2trk > Tascam 122mkIII 1st Gen Cass > 3800 x0."

The first question I have is whether these are different reel sources, one of them 10” and another 7”. It is possible. As I note, these recordings almost have the feel as if they were intended for a live release. I have seen hints and allegations of various 1st gen mixdowns involving this date, 8/28/74, and other dates, perhaps around the release of the “9/1/74” Keystone show (which is not from a single show, but from several). That said, it’s probably safest to assume that these came from the same 1st gen cassettes that Eaton has on DAT, and possibly from Rob’s DAT itself.

Either way, these look to be part of the First Betty Batch. Recall that the First Betty Batch and the Second Betty Batch were tapes that were bought in the storage locker auction ca. 1986 and digitized by a large crew of people, many of whom had the idea that they should be freely and widely circulated. As reported in Dwork et al. (2000), Harvey (2009) and various other sources, the daisy chain involved in transferring these tapes (7” and 10” reels) was as follows: 1x Technics 1506 reel to reel playback deck (Bob Menke's) > 1x Sony PCM-501ES (Dougal Donaldson's) > 1x Panasonic VHS hi-fi VCR deck > 3x Beta hi-fi VCR decks > 1 other VHS hifi VCR deck > 2 cassette decks. I don’t know to whom the various other decks belong, nor the extent to which their Garcia tapes have circulated. I know that some of Dougal’s Garcia PCMs emerged (e.g., 7/21/74, maybe 7/22/74, maybe 6/4/74), and that there other tapes that are identified as MSR > cassette (such as the Sacks version of 7/21/74 [shnid 10127] and this 8/24/74 tape). That may imply that whoever got cassette copies also circulated them independently, that Dougal himself had cassette copies, or some other arrangement.

The tapes are beautiful. Even with the limits imposed by the (various) A>D steps (e.g., wasn’t the Sony PCM 501ES doing A>D at 14bit/44.056kHz?) and an assigned cassette gen, underneath it (and, don’t get me wrong, it’s not far underneath) lies a gorgeous, full, rich, balanced, crisp Betty Cantor-Jackson recording. She has amazing ears.


This is Garcia, Saunders, Fierro, Kahn and a drummer. I believe the drummer is Paul Humphrey. Argument against is that Bill Kreutzmann is known to have played the day before (8/23/74) at the Berkeley Community Theater for the Ethiopian Famine Relief Benefit. Argument for is that this sounds like Humphrey to me. I don’t trust my ears, but this is my thinking. update 20181211: drummer is probably BK. As I note below, I think this is the period in which Martin really starts to step forward. I like that, but others find it less appealing. Kahn is really good here, and Garcia is right, if a little be restrained.

Song Notes

Some notes on some of the songs, straight from my listening notes.

La-La” [Allan | Scofield | JB] is understood as a Martin Fierro composition and features him on flute. I know little about the song, beyond that it was released on Keepers (1997). As I have conjectured, August 1974 is where Martin Fierro really starts to step in front of this band. He leads the first five minutes here with his flute. In the 4-min mark he uses some really nicely controlled echo and reverb. I suspect if we go back and compare we'll find that he only really started using this sort of thing from July 1974. Folks who object to Martin's playing (I am not generally among them) will probably like his playing less and less from July 1974 to the end of the year. (I haven't revisited true 1975 LOM shows with this hypothesis in mind, so let me not comment on his playing there yet.) During this time, Garcia is very subtly strumming a vaguely Brazilian rhythm behind. Really tasteful, "back" stuff. Betty's recording really does La-La justice, too. Everything is mic'd just perfectly. the 9-minute mark, after some really nice gentle Merl solos, John Kahn steps forward a little, even more prominently in the 10-minute mark. Everyone is really tight here. @ 11:15 La-La I think Merl is the one who signals a decay of the song structure, which really interests me. Garcia is always ready to go to space, so it's probably part of their playing together that Jerry restrained himself and put Merl in front of it (at least in this case). I need to revisit, but he does something right around this time that decays the notes, I can't describe it. By mid-to-late 11-minute mark, Garcia has heard him and he signals that he's ready to get spacy. John is there, too. Late 12-minute mark, there is some spacy knobbing going on. I have typically associated this sound with Martin's saxophone, but here it is. I wonder if it's a synthesizer that Merl has that can either be keyed to the saxophone or switched over to a knob or pedal or key that Merl has? Late 12-minute mark, just some nice decayed jazzy spacing it. Martin has picked the flute back up (he had laid out for a few minutes, or maybe was just doing that funky space sound I just described) Garcia speeds up 14:12, tries a little fretting, Martin is doing the reverb and echo on his flute again. Early 15-minute mark the drummer digs in and tries to set a faster pace, getting underneath John who's going that speed as well and scaling around, a little fast wiggle @ 15:47ish. Jungle echo'ing, gotta be wired up through Martin's flute? Yep, listen @ 16:50, where it's coming out as hybrid flute and jungle echo. Garcia leads a more urgent decay @ early 17-min mark. I find this material engaging. I think some would critique it, but I find it to be pretty productive jamming for this whole time. The song clocks in around 18 and a half minutes, but it doesn't sound to me like it meanders. The transition to PMTWGR is flawed but interesting. Martin quite explicitly blows the “La-La” theme on the flute, while Kahn quite explicitly (and rather more definitively) asserts the “People Make The World Go Round” intro. Bass v. flute, so to PMTWGR we go!

People Make The World Go Round” [Allan | JB] is absolutely fantastic. It starts with the bass-led intro, beautifully accompanied by the flute, Merl running some nice gentle organ keys, Garcia just strumming, nice tight-string rhythm happening. A little palate cleanser after the space out. It's interesting to me that this is indeed how this band used PMTWGR, a warmdown and not a jam vehicle. In the one Aunt Monk version in circulation (2/14/75), it was a 20+ minute echofest (and really good). I have always assumed that these guys got the song from Milt Jackson's 1973 album Sunflower (my CD version of which is part of a "CTI Catalogue Re-Launch Series", produced by Didier C. Deutsch, ZK 65131, 1997), since on that album the song precedes Freddie Hubbard’s “Little Sunflower” [Allan | Scofield | JB] (called just “Sunflower” on the Milt Jackson album), which this group also played (9 times between 5/9/75 and 7/4/75 in various personnel/band configurations). (Blair Jackson has said this latter tune was brought in by Martin, FYI.) But beyond their propinquity on the Milt Jackson album, there’s no particular reason to imagine that PMTWGR came from there. Composed by the Stylistics’ writing team of Thom Bell (music) and Linda Creed (lyrics), and released on that band’s eponymous 1971 album, it was covered by inter alia Michael Jackson and Ramon Morris (on Sweet Sister Funk). These guys could have gotten it from anywhere, and listening around a little bit I don’t hear a distinct arrangement that jumps out as the source for Merl/Martin/Jerry and the rest of these guys.

(I’m A) Road Runner” [Allan | Scofield | JB] was written by the Holland/Dozier/Holland team at Motown and first released by Junior Walker & The All Stars on the 1965 record Shotgun. JGMS had started playing it around the start of 1974, and IMO it got better by August 1974 than it had been earlier. The song lives right at the top of Garcia's vocal range in this period, in fact probably just a bit beyond it. When he first started singing it, to get to these notes he sort of parodied them, which is just not a good emotional register for Garcia. It doesn't make me as uncomfortable as Marmaduke's {RIP} treatment of Honky Tonk Women, which had a worse to-be-taken-seriously-ratio for a more parodiable song, but I don't like those early Roadrunners (see 2/5/74, 2/9/74 for reference). Look it ain't a Dylan song, but it's a good piece of Americana and it deserves some respect, dammit!

Jimmy Cliff’s “Sitting In Limbo” [Allan | Scofield |JB] is an early version for this band (third time), performed with extreme care to good effect. It almost sounds like Garcia thinks he's on the radio, that's how careful he's being. Almost like he thinks he's being recorded for release. The vocals are as perspicacious as Garcia vocals could get. Despite that this song lives in a really tight spot for his vocal range, he doesn't crack or clam up, not once. He doesn't sound too thin (though a critique might say it is, indeed thin). He doesn't stumble once on the lyrics. His guitar playing is reasonably safe, but pretty well flawless. I think he really likes and respects this song. And, again, Betty's tape does this quiet song great justice. Now, this sort of thing doesn't light me up (I like the rough as much as the diamond), but if you want to hear Jerry paying attention, this is as good an example as any.


Great recording, pretty good show. La-La -> PMTWGR are the highlights, for me.

Listening Notes after the jump.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

JGMS: July 13-15, 1972 (UNCERTAIN)

The item above, from the great "Rock Talk by KG" column in the Hayward Daily Review (July 13, 1972, p. 27) says that Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders will be playing Keystone Berkeley "through July 17", implying shows on July 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17.

There are no known (to me) Garcia conflicts with Thursday July 13, Friday the 14th or or Saturday the 15th. On the 16th, GD played Dillon Stadium in Hartford, CT, and on the 17th Garcia sat in with the Allman Brothers at Gaelic Park in the Bronx, NYC.

So we can clearly rule out 7/16/72 and 7/17/72. But what about 7/13/72, 7/14/72, and 7/15/72? I am inclined to list them as tentative JGMS gigs.


p.s., while I am at it, I should note that the Jerry Site's entry for a show on 7/11/72, derived from information about the Third Betty Batch tapes, is almost certainly a mistaken reference to 7/11/73. At some point it should probably go to the place I have called TJS-deletion, unless and until TJS builds in a way of cataloging mislabels, canceled gigs and such.

! seealso: apparently JGMS played in little Ben Lomond on 7/12/72, making these gigs seem more likely, for sure - a warm up off the beaten path (to say the least) before the big Bay Area gigs.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

What's Going On? Listening to the Show Traveling as JGMS 7/22/74

LN jg1974-07-22.jgms.146mins.sbd-GMB.86198.flac1644

I wrote about this Jerry Garcia – Merl Saunders (JGMS) set dated July 22, 1974 and located at the Keystone, Berkeley, some time back. I had suggested that this show (and the one attributed to July 21, 1974, same venue) might not be as it seemed. I initially speculated that it might be from the Sand Dunes, but upon a close listen I don’t think so – it sounds like the Keystone to me. I don’t normally trust my ears, but it’s identified as Keystone and it sounds like everything else I have heard from there, with a good-sized crowd. (For more on the Sand Dunes, see my initial post and check the posts under the Sand Dunes label.)

I have recently gone back to the material identified as JGMS, July 21, 1974 at the Keystone Berkeley and promised to revisit 7/22 as well. I have now done so, and I can say a few preliminary things.

First, the two filesets are clearly related beyond that they are dated to consecutive days. As I note below, the following pieces look to fit together: Pennies From Heaven (7/21/74 front, 7/22/74 back), How Sweet It Is (7/22 v1 front, 7/21 back) and You Can Leave Your Hat On (7/21 front, 7/22 back). I don’t know how what began as scraps of tape got organized and disseminated in this way, but there you go. This all remains to be confirmed, but I think it will be.

Second, while I am not sure I’ll ever be able to figure out exactly what’s what, I presently hold the view that these filesets are approximately correctly dated, which is itself a discovery since there are lots of reasons to misbelieve them. Among them are the following:

  • The Grateful Dead played Hollywood Bowl on 7/21/74.
  • Newspaper listings for the Keystone show different acts on these dates (respectively, Moby Grape and Earthquake on Sunday 7/21, Nite Shift and audition bands on Monday 7/22).  (These contrary listings appear in the Berkeley Barb, July 12-18, 1974, p. 28 and in the Hayward Daily Review, July 19, 1974, p. 36.)
  • Related, Merl Saunders and Martin Fierro were billed for the Sand Dunes on 7/22 (Oakland Tribune, July 21, 1974, p. 2-RAP). 
  •  There are repeated songs on each “date”: When I Die on 7/21 and How Sweet It Is on 7/22.
  • Boogie On Reggae Woman was first released on Stevie Wonder’s Fulfillingness’ First Finale, which appears to have come out on … wait for it … July 22, 1974.

So there are all kinds of reasons to disbelieve these datings. Yet, they feel approximately correct.

First, there’s the matter of the tape labeling itself. These have quite clear provenance (First Batch Betty reels > Dougal Donaldson’s PCM copy > DAT), and it’s not clear that a mislabel would have been likely to intervene in such a short chain. It could have, as the old saga of April 1975 LOM dates suggests. Someone might have been making shit up. But it’d be strange. 

Second, Tony Saunders is here, which implies that John Kahn was not available. (This is not Aunt Monk, remember; it’s Garcia-Saunders. I infer this inter alia from the fact that Garcia sings some tunes.) We know that John was at Hollywood Bowl (with Maria Muldaur’s band) on 7/21/74, and might imagine that he wasn’t in as much of a rush to get back to the Bay Area as Garcia might have been, not least because he had family in LA. 

Third, when else would these have been? We could push out as far as July 1975, but no farther. The setlist, performance quality, song timings, and many other things ring more like 1974 to my ear than 1975. It almost certainly could not have been any earlier.

More specifically (and hence less justifiably), I am entertaining the idea that there were indeed shows on more or less precisely the nights indicated. The plans for Frank Biner and the Nite Shift and some band auditions at Keystone on Monday 7/22 could very easily have been shunted aside if Jerry would be in the house. This would be a really nice Monday-night payday for Freddie Herrera (Keystone proprietor) and the other musicians, so the incentive was there. Regarding 7/21, I guess either that there was a late set from Saturday night to Sunday morning (i.e., starting on 7/20/74) that was labeled the 21st because it started after midnight, or, more likely to my mind (though not likely in any absolute sense), that Garcia indeed did race up from LA after the Hollywood Bowl gig and make it to Berkeley to play the last set with Merl et al. I know it all sounds implausible, but that’s my hunch. There was a flurry of activity in the Oakland Tribune around Saunders and Fierro in July-August 1974 (see, e.g., my post on Merl Saunders and Friends gig at the Inn of the Beginning on May 31-June 1, 1974). I don’t know precisely what it was, but something was going on, and typical patterns (insofar as there were any at this time) could easily have given way.

Baroque listening notes follow.

Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
July 22, 1974 (Monday)

--Set I (6 tracks, 67:56)--
s1t01. //Pennies From Heaven [#2:20] [1:10]
s1t02. Boogie On Reggae Woman [18:40] [3:53]
s1t03. Wondering Why [17:05] [0:16]
s1t04. How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) // [5:06#]
s1t05. // You Can Leave Your Hat On [#5:27] (1) [0:49]
s1t06. That's What Love Will Make You Do [12:55] (2) [0:12]

--Set II (4 tracks, 78:10)--
s2t01. //Cucumber Slumber [#20:47] [0:40]
s2t02. Harder They Come [17:34] [2:09]
s2t03. What’s Going On [26:22] % [0:04]
s2t04. [0:05] How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) [9:38] (3) [0:49]

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - guitar, vocals;
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards, vocals;
! lineup: Martin Fierro - saxophone, flute;
! lineup: Tony Saunders - bass;
! lineup: Gaylord Birch - 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: shnid 86198 (this seed); shnid 10127 (earlier, slightly shorter version seeded by Darrin Sacks; it gives lineage as MSR>C>DAT, which is possible given that there were indeed cassette decks at the transfer party for the first Betty Batch).

! R: "Source: SBD: MSR > PCM > DAT; Transfer: Panasonic SV-3700 > M-Audio Audiophile 2496 to Wavelab 5.0 mastering with L3 Multimaximizer > CDWAV1.9 > FLAC (level 8). Transferred, Remastered by B. Koucky and Seeded by Green Mountain Bros. June 2007." This, along with "7/21/74", was part of the First Batch of Betty Boards (see Dwork et al. 2000; Harvey 2009, pp. 122-141). It is not identified by Dougal Donaldson (in Dwork et al. 2000, pp. 37-39) as one of the tapes transferred from that batch, but samizdat versions of the history of the Betty tapes include these dates (as well as 6/4/74). As of this writing, I do not know the tape specs, i.e., whether they were 7" or 10" tapes, the recording speed (probably 7.5 ips), any noise reduction applied or decoded (Dolby or DBX), etc. I only know that, per the Betty Board histories, they were half-track tapes played back on Bob Menke's Technics 1506, through Dougal Donaldson's Sony PCM 501ES unit. I presume that the source PCM tape was Dougal Donaldson's.

! setlist: the seeder Bill Koucky had referred to these two pieces as either sets or shows. There is so much other mystery around this date, I'll just keep it simple and call them sets for now. I think we will discover that this material fits together like puzzle pieces with the material dated "7/21/74". Specifically, the following pieces look to fit together: Pennies From Heaven (7/21/74 front, 7/22/74 back), How Sweet It Is (7/22 v1 front, 7/21 back) and You Can Leave Your Hat On (7/21 front, 7/22 back). How the material got distributed across the two recordings this way remains a mystery.

! setlist: Seeder Note: "d2t04 How Sweet It Is may or may not be from this show depending on if it was an early or late show. It is very clear the tune is the last song of the night as Jerry says, “See you all later” and you can hear people in the first rows ask for an encore. There is a tape splice before the song, which may indicate a reel change or a filler to the DAT source. The Jerry Site notes that What’s Going On is cut and this version is not and does not list How Sweet It Is nor does it list the d1tr01 Instrumental [Pennies From Heaven]. This is a more complete source that what previously circulates."

! setlist: s1t01 Pennies From Heaven is the Arthur Johnston/Johnny Burke composition (1936). Thanks to Tony Saunders for identifying it. It also appears as d1t03 on the shnid 117653 fileset for "7/21/74" and on the Aunt Monk show dated 2/14/75.

! R: s1t01 PFH cuts in.

! P: s1t02 BORW comes in smokin', nice entry by the bass and the drums.

! s1t02 after the song, they are warming up "After Midnight" until 19:47, but then change course. @ 20:47 Merl signals "When I Die" and Tony takes the cue. They noodle in for a little bit, change course again. @ 21:24 Garcia seems to strum "The Weight". Merl hits "When I Die" again @ 21:38. In the meantime, he had mentioned "Wondering Why", which is where they go.

! R: s1t04 HSII cuts out

! R: s1t05 YCLYHO cuts in

! s1t05 @ 5:38 (1) I think I hear Garcia say something like "We only have time left to do one more" to his bandmate(s).

! s1t06 @ 13:00 (2) JG: "We're gonna take a break. We'll be back pretty soon."

! setlist: s2t01 Cucumber Slumber is a one-off -- this is the only known version (for Jerry Garcia, naturally). As far as I can tell, it was initially released on Weather Report's Mysterious Traveller (Columbia 32494, 1974). And how would you like some serendipity? According to wikipedia, first, the record was recorded between February and May 1974 at Devonshire Studios in LA, which of course is where (and when) Garcia's Compliments album was recorded. Second, "Greg Errico was the drummer for the tour between the previously released Sweetnighter and [Mysterious Traveller], but declined an invitation to be a permanent member of [Weather Report]." The first references I can find to this album being released are in July 1974 (a review in some Indiana newspaper). It could have been that these guys somehow got their hands on an advance copy, or at least the chart of the Alphonso Johnson/Josef Zawinul composition. Maybe they got a copy of it at Devonshire Studios. But it's unlikely. update: indeed, I think the simpler explanation is that the dating given to this material is wrong, and the gig happened a half year later.

! R: s2t01 Cucumber Slumber cuts in, not much missing.

! P: s2t01 Cucumber Slumber Martin does some very loud squawking at 19-min mark. He would do more and more of this as things progressed. I don't particularly remember him doing it quite this aggressively before about this time (ca. July 1974), but that's something I'd want to check. If you don't like it when Martin squawks, I'd say that shows in '73 and the the first half of '74 will be more to your liking.

! R: there is a persistent R-channel buzz that can be heard especially clearly when Cucumber Slumber ends. It ends around 21:16 of the track. It is back again at the end of HTC, probably has been there all through the music.

! setlist: s2t03 What's Going On is the only known Garcia-associated version (i.e. a one-off). As Corry notes, the drummer for this megahit was none other than Paul Humphrey. I think that certainly makes it more likely that this is Humphrey drumming. update: nope - it's Gaylord Birch

! P: s2t03 WGO is a really nice performance, very exploratory but not too meandering. At times toward the end Tony S. is playing a bass line a little like "Welcome To The Basement". Very nice stuff.

! P: s2t04 HSII Martin is blowing *hard in the 7-minute mark.

! s2t04 (3) JG: "Thank you. We'll see y'all later on."

Dwork, John, and Alexis Muellner, with Dougal Donaldson, Doug Oade and Mark Kraitchman. 2000. Outside the System. In The Deadhead's Taping Compendium, vol. III, An In-depth Guide to the Music of the Grateful Dead on Tape, 1986-1995 (New York: Henry Holt/Owl Books.), pp. 33-62.
Harvey, Katie A. 2009. Embalming the Dead: Taping, Trading and Collecting the Aura of the Grateful Dead. Master of Arts Thesis, Tufts University, August. URL, consulted 12/18/2011.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Maria Muldaur: July 21, 1974, Hollywood Bowl, Hollywood, CA

We know that the world is generating more data than we can handle, and what we need are better aggregators and synthesizers. A case in point would be recollections attached to historical events such as, say, oh, I dunno, rock concerts. At various message boards, torrent sites, discussion groups, etc. (to say nothing of Facebook), people are leaving often-valuable little bits and pieces of memory and other information. Part of the obsessive nature of the whole thing, then, is trying to be a better aggregator, knowing you'll never get there, but having a blast trying.

Enough of that. As I was poking around for my listening notes of the JGMS “7/21/74” Keystone Berkeley recording, I was working at It has a list of every GD show (though it's not intuitive to get to the one you are looking for), has created space for people to comment, post images, etc., and probably has lots of eyeballs opening to lots of brains full of lots of interesting data poking around everyday (certainly more than the five eyeballs that hit JGMF). So, anyway, I visit the page for the Grateful Dead show at Hollywood Bowl on July 21, 1974: Commander Cody and Maria Muldaur opened. Maria Muldaur's backing band included Garcia sidekick John Kahn. Kahn and Muldaur would at some point be a couple, though the dates are unclear to me. I have it that things were basically over by 1979-1980. I have never quite known when they started. So, back to interesting data floating around in the ether. At, attendee ‘jacksondownunda’ offers the following recollection:

Maria [Muldaur] seemed delightfully ripped this day, leaning backwards to plant kisses on John Kahn (great Walkin' One And Only and Paul Butterfield dropped by to blow harp).

Maria Muldaur Band, Hollywood Bowl, July 21, 1974. Copyright ultomatt

Why do I quote this?

First, someone interested in documenting John Kahn’s career might just like the Butterfield guest shot datum, if he hadn’t already codified back in July of ’74 itself (or any time since).

Second, it suggests to me that John and Maria were cooking by July 1974. I have no idea if that’s right (could have just been the flirtatious stage thing). I also have no idea if that’s superfluous, since maybe one of you knows when they started and ended. But it’s certainly something that needs to be considered, because of the centrality of Kahn to Garcia On The Side (“if John Kahn hadn’t existed, Jerry Garcia would have had to invent him” a sage has said); because his work and life with Maria may have shaped the contours of his involvement with various Garcia Bands, and hence shaped those bands, including their touring schedules and so forth; and of course because Maria Muldaur has to be treated on her own terms as a member of the Garcia On The Side Alumni Club, to say nothing of her place as an American musical performer.

So, I’ll end with a question … does anyone know when John and Maria started and ended their relationships, personal and professional?

Friday, December 16, 2011

Pennies From Heaven: Listening to the Tape Known as JGMS 7/21/74


Here are the reference posts for this set of listening notes:
  1. JGMF, “JGMS: "July 21-22," 1974, Keystone, Berkeley, CA”, 7/25/2010, updated 12/16/2011.
  2. JGMF, “Jerry with Merl and/or Martin, ca. 1974, The Sand Dunes”, 5/16/2010.
In brief, I am walking back from my speculation that this material is from the Sand Dunes. It’s not. It sounds like the Keystone. This only raises more questions about the date. But I am going to listen to 7/22/74, and on its face it looks like these two tapes may be close companions. I will leave some notes when I can.

LN jg1974-07-21.jgms.93mins.sbd-Betty.117653.flac1644

Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
"July 21, 1974 (Sunday)"

Disc One (3 tracks, 47:22)
--end set I--
d1t01. The Harder They Come [18:09] (1) [0:14] %
--set II--
d1t02. //When I Die [12:33#] (2) [0:28]
d1t03. Pennies From Heaven// [15:41#] % dead air [0:14]

Disc Two (4 tracks, 46:02)
--set II (con't)--
d2t01. //After Midnight [#10:33] (3) [1:59]
d2t02. When I Die [17:10] [1:29]
d2t03. You Can Leave Your Hat On// [11:28#] % dead air [0:04]
d2t04. //How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) [#2:56] (4) [0:17] % dead air [0:04]

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders

! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards, vocals;
! lineup: Martin Fierro - saxophone;
! lineup: Tony Saunders - el-bass;
! lineup: Gaylord Birch - 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: none.

! FYI:

! R: given lineage: "MSR > PCM > DAT > ZA2 > CDR (xx) > EAC > flac1644". At Lossless Legs, user JerryRocks has identified the digital history of this recording, passing from Dougal Donaldson (PCM) to Ryan Shriver (DAT) to Andy Lemieux (DAT) to jjoops (CD) and thereafter out and about.

! This recording may not be what it purports to be. The Grateful Dead were at Hollywood Bowl on 7/21/74, though Garcia could have flown up for a late Bay Area set with Merl after that show ended ca. 9 pm. All available sources also point to Earthquake and Moby Grape playing the Keystone Berkely this night (Berkeley Barb, July 12-18, 1974, p. 28; Hayward Daily Review, July 19, 1974, p. 36). Tony Saunders is playing bass here, which works well with the 7/21 dating since John Kahn was down in Hollywood, having opened for the GD as part of Maria Muldaur's band, and he may not have wanted to fly north right away. The room sounds too big to be a tiny place like the Sand Dunes, which I had earlier conjectured. I also think it goes along well with the material dated 7/22/74 (also featuring Tony S. on bass). My working argument is that we might as well call it 7/21/74, Keystone Berkeley. update: nope.

! We cannot know how much of a show, or how many pieces of shows, this represents. I have conjectured before that this represents bits and pieces of tape. It's so cut up, we really can't tell what might go with what except for the ca. 40-minute piece of continuous tape from After Midnight to Leave Your Hat On. HTC is definitely the end of a first set, and HSII is definitely the end of a show, but beyond that we don't have much to go on.

! Personnel: Tony Saunders is on bass, which only really happened when Kahn was unavailable or when the gig was more of a Merl gig than a Jerry-and-Merl gig. As noted just above, this lends some credence to a 7/21/74 dating. I do not know who is drumming. The guy is really good. Possibilities include Bill Kreutzmann, Paul Humphrey or Gaylord Birch, all of whom Tony Saunders remembers playing with in the Saunders-Garcia band. E.W. Wainwright apparently played with Aunt Monk at the Generosity (timeframe uncertain) and also sat in at least once with Garcia-Saunders (3/14/74, Keystone Berkeley). Larry Vann and Bob Stellar both also drummed with Aunt Monk and could be possible here. update: it's Gaylord.

! R: this is a really sweet sounding recording. First fucking rate. It's maybe a little bright, as if maybe the PCM gen put some pre-emphasis in that never got decoded out. But Betty Cantor-Jackson is a true genius. This recording came from "Batch One" of the Betty tapes, which explains the PCM gen.

 P: d1t01 HTC the drummer is really hot. Now, of course, Betty knows how to mic him perfectly. The snap is fantastic. But that's also because the dude is *hitting. Merl also sounds really nice. Jerry gets a nice metallic sound for his solo in the 12-minute mark, extremely electric.

! d1t01 HTC In the 8-min mark is that alto sax? Martin is keeping it nice and tight here.

! venue: crowd sounds too big to be the Sand Dunes. Maybe 7/21 and 7/22 go together, and are actually from the Keystone.

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

! P: d1t02 WID when they drop into the jam around 2:30, it's really nice, with Tony Saunders supplying the big bottom end and Merl cooking around and through him. Tony does some nice ascending runs at the start of the 3-min mark. Martin misses the return to the '1' about 11 minutes in, but treats discretion as the better part of valor, stops, andjoins the rest of the band.

! R: d1t02 When I Die cuts in, not much missing;

! d1t02 (2) Tony Saunders can be heard talking to Jerry from 12:41 to the end of the track.

! setlist: d1t03 Pennies From Heaven is the Arthur Johnston/Johnny Burke composition (1936). Thanks to Tony Saunders for identifying it.

! R: d1t03 Pennies From Heaven cuts out;

! R: d2t01 After Midnight cuts in, substantially underway in the middle of a loud Martin solo.

! P: d2t01 AM Tony picks some really big notes about 5-minutes in. Merl is doing his tasteful Jimmy Smith thing as we approach the 6-minute mark, his son thumping along underneath. @ 6:12 the drummer makes himself heard with some nice cymbal work. It's grooving now.

! d2t01 (3) @ 11:52 someone asks "Jerry, you want a hit, man?" Folks on and near stage laugh, Garcia asks back "'Do, I want a hit, man?' I just had one." And it's true that just previous to this, Jerry can be heard asking Tony or someone for a match.

! P: d2t02 WID is much faster than the version that appears earlier in this fileset. The drummer is a monster at the start of this version (though, again, there's always the fact of Betty's amazing tapes to factor in).

! P: d2t03 YCLYHO Merl is a little confused about the vocals at the start.

! R: d2t03 YCLYHO Vocals are very low in the mix, come in better after about a minute and a half.

! P: d2t03 YCLYHO Martin does some ear-splitting stuff @ 5:55.

! R: d2t03 YCLYHO cuts out, unknown amount missing.

! R: d2t04 How Sweet It Is cuts in, almost entirely missing

! d2t04 (4) JG: "See y'all later."

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Tutt Rule: JGMS at the Keystone, June 22, 1975

LN jg1975-06-22.jgms.all.aud-menke-falanga-motb-0048.87236.flac1644

Update: 4/20/2020: I now refer to this as JGMS, because Ron Tutt is not drumming, and Greg Errico is. Less importantly, but not unimportantly, while all of the external materials refer to the group as Legion of Mary, Rex Jackson labeled his tape boxes Jerry & Merl.

Sometimes I have a modest tendency to read too much into too little. Ya think? So you’ll discount appropriately if I say that the above calendar is a gift from the data gods, not to mention whoever had it printed on that attractive blue paper. Working from the edges in toward the center, at least a local center, of my chosen topic of Garcia On The Side, we can begin with some of the obscure Bay Area bands, vintage summer 1975. I’ll let you determine for themselves which those are. Then we can look at some of the not-too-obscure ones … hello, Freddie King! Yes, I do feel the blues, thank you for asking.

Kingfish, with Garcia’s once and future bandmates Bob Weir and Dave Torbert, play a Thursday-Friday (19-20), while Keith and Donna Band played the previous weekend, Friday, June 13 and Saturday, June 14, 1975. We know Jerry was out of town on that Saturday (Legion of Mary, 6/14/75, Fox Theatre, Venice, CA), but we are given to wonder whether he tried his luck Friday with Keith, Donna, Billy K. and the gang.

Anyway, the most striking feature about this calendar as it relates directly to my engagement with GOTS is the duplicity of billings for Garcia’s June 1975 gigs with Merl. On Tuesday-Wednesday June 3-4, 1975, and again on Wednesday June 11, they are billed as “Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders”, or “Garcia and Saunders”. I will refer to this, as usual, as JGMS. On Saturday-Sunday, June 21-22, 1975, they are billed as Legion of Mary, LOM. June 1975 in general (beyond the Keystone) features a more or less even split between the two billings. (update: actually, June was 10-3 in favor of JGMS, by my count as of 4/20/2020.) Since we know of many, many LOM-billed gigs between the name’s ca. March 1, 1975 “official” debut and June, the old idea that there was a linear progression from JGMS to LOM, with a clean, speciating break between them, is untenable.

So, what’s going on? First is the “Tutt Rule”, which comes to us via recollections by Bob Menke and others: “If Ron Tutt was there, it was Legion of Mary.” Tutt was necessary and sufficient to the LOM designation (insofar as Jerry-Merl bands go). For example, a note in the MOTB 0045 seed of the June 3, 1975 show [16 bit: shnid 87198; 24 bit: shnid 87217] explains that “This is listed as Garcia and Saunders since it has been confirmed Ron Tutt did not play drums at this show” (see also the June 4, 1975 MOTB 0046 seeds [16 bit: shnid 87204; 24 bit: shnid 87234]). Cryptdev, who was also around and attending shows, shares this understanding of arrangements (i.e., that Tutt=LOM).

The Tutt Rule holds up well, on its face, against the evidence of the June 1975 Keystone billings. Ron Tutt was drumming with Elvis at the start of the month (helpfully extracted by Corry from the quite extraordinary site every night from May 30-June 10, inclusive. Those shows are billed as JGMS. We also know that Tutt was not drumming at El Camino Park on June 8, 1975, as established in cryptdev’s comments to Corry’s Paul Humphrey post (note cryptdev mistakenly calls it June 7). So far, so good.

There is also a second rule of thumb, slightly more elaborate, which I’ll call the alternation rule. According to received understandings, the Garcia/Saunders/Kahn/Fierro outfit used Paul Humphrey on the weeknights (because of his weekend obligations filming Lawrence Welk) and Tutt on the weekends (because he played with Elvis during the week). This one also helps to make sense of the June 1975 billings: all three JGMS listings fall on weeknights, and both LOM listings fall on weekend nights (if Sunday counts that way). Over at Hooterollin’ Around, for example, commenter Keats relays a conversation with Merl in which he recalls that “Humphrey would show up to play in his monochromatic leisure suits from the Welk show.” While Corry’s courageous research into the Lawrence Welk TV show suggests that Humphrey didn’t start that until 1976, the year after JGMS/LOM ended, he notes that it could well have been some other show filmed in Burbank or wherever. So we might imagine that the June 3-4 and 11 shows feature Paul Humphrey on drums.

But we just don’t know. Leaving aside the question of the overall contours of Humphrey’s playing with JGMS, it remains unknown whether he played at these June ’75 shows. I will be revisiting June 3-4 as soon as I can. We know that the El Camino Park drummer (June 8) was black, but cryptdev doubts it was Mr. Humphrey. What we really need is someone with great ears to check this stuff out and make stylistic notes on the drummers – while I will give it a go, it’s really beyond what my ears can detect.

Whatever the case, the show at Keystone Berkeley, 2119 University Avenue, Berkeley, CA, 94107 on Sunday, June 22, 1975 falls foul of the Tutt rule and belies any assumption we might make about Humphrey being there when Tutt was not. An unimpeachable but unnameable source identifies the drummer at this show as “Gregg Ricero”, a misspelled first name and anagrammatic rearrangement of the last name of Greg Errico. And, as is so often the case, the tape gives us a confirmatory piece of evidence when, after the first song, a crowd member yells “That drummer’s outta site!” Errico is not identified by name, but I am constantly amazed by how knowledgeable Garcia audiences were, even at this relatively early date. The attendee just sounds like he’s making special note of a drummer he hasn’t seen before. When I put these two facts together, I can only conclude that, notwithstanding the Legion of Mary billing, the drummer this night is Greg Errico. This further makes me wonder about the rest of the month, and whether we might not have an opportunity to scrutinize the alternation rule more closely, e.g., by comparing Errico’s drumming here with the drumming on June 3, 4 and 21, among others.

The show is a little sluggish to my ears, but I love it. No one song or passage really stood out for me as particularly great or particularly off. Within about two weeks, Legion of Mary would be no more.

Listening notes follow …

Legion of Mary
June 22, 1975 (Sunday)

--Set I (6 tracks, 80:10)--
d1t01. //Think [#8:14] (1) [0:19] % [0:16]
d1t02. Favela [17:07] [0:14] % [0:33]
d1t03. Last Train From Poor Valley [12:12] [0:54]
d1t04. [0:25] I Feel Like Dynamite [12:25] [0:21]
d1t05. I Second That Emotion [14:52] [0:17] %
d1t06. That's Alright, Mama [11:55] (1) [0:15]

--Set II (5 tracks, 72:20)--
d2t01. After Midnight [15:40] [0:25] % [0:27]
d2t02. Wondering Why [23:10] [0:26]
d2t03. Tough Mama [8:16] [0:17] % [1:34]
d2t04. My Problems Got Problems [12:54] [0:27]
d2t05. How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You) [8:38] (2) [0:03]

! ACT1: Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders
! lineup: ! lineup: Jerry Garcia – el-guitar, vocals;
! lineup: Merl Saunders - keyboards, vocals;
! lineup: John Kahn – el-bass;
! lineup: Martin Fierro - saxophone, flute;
! lineup: Greg Errico - drums.

MOTB: MOTB Release: 0048 16/44.1
Release Date: 09/14/2007
Band: Legion Of Mary
Date: 06/22/1975. Sunday
Venue: Keystone
Location: Berkeley, CA
Source: Audience FOB Recording
Media: Maxell UD90
Lineage: Sony ECM-270 and ECM-250 [Positioned Onstage] > Sony TC-152 > MAC
Transfer: MAC > Nak Dragon > LynxTWO-B > WaveLab 5.0 > HD 24/96 WAV
Taper: Bob Menke and Louis Falanga
Transfer: Bob Menke
Mastering: Derek McCabe


! 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 fileset); (same tape and transfer, preserve at 24bit/96kHz); (deprecated copy of same master); (deprecated copy of same master, misidentified as a soundboard).

! R: this is one of the great set of audience recordings ever made, the 1974-1976 recordings made by Louis Falanga and Bob Menke of Bay Area Jerry Garcia shows. These guys came into the bar, went to the front, grabbed the table at Jerry's feet (right of center from the audience perspective) as soon as the doors opened. As the evening progressed, they would prepare cassette decks (e.g., this Sony TC-152), presumably complete with fresh batteries. Cassettes would be opened, maybe labeled, made ready (e.g., these Maxell UD90s). Two separate microphones, a Sony ECM-250 and (I presume) a newer Sony ECM-270, probably discrete while the lights are up, I figure? Lights go down, mics come out and are, apparently, placed onstage right in front of Garcia, one of them pointing into his stage monitor and the rest angled stage-center to catch the other players. You can hear the clinking of glasses, the low talk of the players onstage, the beautiful fuzz around the monitored guitar … so very much. Wonderful.

! R: The vocals are low ... persistent buzzing, especially set II?

! R: d1t01 Think enters in progress, maybe 30 seconds missing.

! P: d1t01 Martin does a Lonely Avenue quote about 5-minutes in.

! d1t01 (1) @ 8:23 crowd guy yells "That drummer's outta site." Someone on stage: "Really?"

! P d1t01-d1t02 both of these opening numbers are a little sluggish.

! P: d1t06 TAM they don't quite know how to start, consistent with this being a less acclimated drummer.

! d1t06 (1) JG: "We're gonna take a break for a little while. We'll be back a little bit later."

! P: I find the performance sluggish. Nothing really takes off in Set I.

! P: d2t01 After Midnight is plodding

! d2t01 @ 16:01 chick asks for "Sing Me A Rainbow" ... odd. Wasn't that a NRPS tune?

! R: d2t02 the buzzing is really bad in WW. It's a monitor buzz. Really bad in Tough Mama, down @ 0:27, back up.

! d2t05 (2) JG: "Thank you."