Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Dead Lobos Run

Yabba dabba do, stop blowing on my kazoo!

The North Face trail running shoe -- good for use in the Appalachian Mountains ... but seriously, they are rather small compared to the Rocky Mountains ... Sierra Nevada are sweet, too.  Would definitely use 'em in the Alps, that's for sure.  One thing's for sure -- Jerry Garcia or Bob Weir or Phil Lesh or Blaise Compaoré probably never went running in Liberia, Burkina Faso, Ouagadougou, Pyongyang, 평양 직할시 조선민주주의인민공화국 平壤直轄市 朝鮮民主主義人民共和國, Türkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Кыргызстан, Киргизия, Uzbekistan, O'zbekiston, Ўзбекистон Республикаси, Tajikistan, Тоҷикистон.  Probably the same with Brent Mydland.  At least that's my gut feeling.  I could be wrong.  I mean, there were a lot of drugs at Grateful Dead shows and the good Lord above, He knows I did my share!
Tuesday Evening Run: 22 minutes 37 seconds
+ 3 sec

5:50 p.m. - 76°, kinda humid, kinda cloudy, sun low on the horizon, eh but not horrible.
September:3 hours 25 min
August:2 hours 39 min
July:2 hours 11 min
June:1 hour 47 min
May:4 hours 46 min

I wasn't so sure about running today. Two days in a row is easy for many but I'm not used to it. After yesterday's run I thought perhaps I had a small gluteus maximus issue... am kinda feelin' it now, too. Twasn't really too bad. Eight days ago there were only eight days left in the month and I was determined to get 4 more runs in. That didn't pan out. Yesterday was 1 of 4. Today was 2 of 4 and the month's over in like 5 hours. Oh well.

The run wasn't bad. Didn't add on much time which I'm kind of happy about. Two days in a row didn't give me much confidence to increase my time much. Thankfully the tunes I chose didn't really give me much of a choice so that worked out.

Same as yesterday, I was tired around halfway. Not really tired but... just not enthusiastic about finishing 22½ minutes. Made it to the end I did... with a whole lotta willpower.

Almost an hour and a half on the trail was sweet. Unfortunately the weather's been warm(er) lately which doesn't help me out any. Soon, I hope, the temps'll be back down to something resembling Fall. That'll be so nice, to run when it's actually feeling cool out. 22½ minutes can maybe even soon become 25! 30? We'll see.


PHONOGRAPHRunning Playlist
Included Tunes from...

Los Lobos - How Will The Wolf Survive? (1984)
Los Lobos

How Will The Wolf Survive?

Don't Worry Baby
A Matter Of Time
Corrido #1
Our Last Night
The Breakdown
I Got Loaded
Serenata Nortena
I Got To Let You Know
Lil' King Of Everything
Will The Wolf Survive
What a great, great album from Los Lobos. Supposedly, according to some, this is their best mostly English language release. That kinda bums me out. Listening to other albums from them won't be as good as this one? Bahhhh -- that sucks. Oh well.

I almost saw Los Lobos when I saw the Grateful Dead at Giants Stadium in '89. They were the opening band but we, my friends and I, stayed in the lot. We didn't know Los Lobos at the time. Well, we knew La Bamba but that was about it and so hanging in the lot was way more important. Oh well.

Thankfully I'm discovering their music now. Better late than never. This is such a good fun album that it's gonna get a million plays by me. Without a doubt. While it might be their best, I'm still lookin' forward to their other stuff.

320 kbps mp3 download

In addition to that great Los Lobos album...

100 Days of the Dead

Day 8

39 Years Ago Tonight...

Grateful Dead ~ September 30, 1969
Cafe au Go Go, New York City

China Cat Sunflower-> I Know You Rider,
Merry-Go-Round Broke Down-> Take Me Out To The Ballgame tunings,
Alligator-> Drums-> The Other One

How about some Greenwich Village Dead... and not of the Fillmore East variety? Head a whole buncha blocks west from where the Fillmore is (was) in the East Village (2nd Ave & 6th St) and, unless you have no sense of direction or make a wrong turn because you're tripping, you should end up near the park (Washington Square) or just south of, yeah, right around the heart of NYU and, if you keep your eyes open, Bleecker Street. That's where the Cafe au Go Go was.

At about 34 minutes long, t
hese songs are all that exists from this date. The entire setlist isn't even known. Vocals are practically non-existent but other than that, the recording isn't too, too bad for an Aud from 1969. Truly it could be worse but it's actually listenable. The tunings are short but neat. Drums, I think, is the best stuff here, actually. Why? Well, for this reason alone -- no wicked muddy vocals that are essentially non-existent. The Other One, though, hmmm... so nice! Even in non-soundboard quality with poorly placed mics -- mmmm. And giving this yet another listen, there are moments in China-> Rider that are just so sweet, as well. Is this worth the download and 34 minute listen? To me it is!! I've even listened to it around four times now.

Source: Audience > ? > Cassette > Cassette > CD

Audio Quality:

9/30/69 is at Archive.org
for your downloading pleasure

9-30-69 aka 09-30-69 aka 9/30/69 aka 09/30/69 aka 69-09-30 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD download

Monday, September 29, 2008

Rehearsal Run ... sort of

Dear New York Mets,

You're pathetic.

Second year in a row?!


Thanks... jerks.

P.S. are you aware you suck?

P.P.S. you suck.

The North Face trail running shoe -- good for use in the Appalachian Mountains ... but seriously, they are rather small compared to the Rocky Mountains ... Sierra Nevada are sweet, too.  Would definitely use 'em in the Alps, that's for sure.  One thing's for sure -- Jerry Garcia or Bob Weir or Phil Lesh or Blaise Compaoré probably never went running in Liberia, Burkina Faso, Ouagadougou, Pyongyang, 평양 직할시 조선민주주의인민공화국 平壤直轄市 朝鮮民主主義人民共和國, Türkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Кыргызстан, Киргизия, Uzbekistan, O'zbekiston, Ўзбекистон Республикаси, Tajikistan, Тоҷикистон.  Probably the same with Brent Mydland.  At least that's my gut feeling.  I could be wrong.  I mean, there were a lot of drugs at Grateful Dead shows and the good Lord above, He knows I did my share!
Monday Afternoon Run: 22 minutes 34 seconds
+ :16

6:35 p.m. - 80°, too warm but with the sun going down: not terrible
September:3 hours 3 min
August:2 hours 39 min
July:2 hours 11 min
June:1 hour 47 min
May:4 hours 46 min

Okay. First run in WAY TOO LONG (since Wednesday) ... but I got it done. Cracked the 3-hour mark for the first time since May. Nice. I am happy about that.

Despite the warmth it was an okay run. Mayhaps I shouldn't a-tried for 22½ minutes 'cause that was a little much. Well, I mean, I got it done but it wasn't so easy. The 5 days without running and the heat took a small toll on me. A minor form of hell is what the final ten or so minutes was; all I wanted to do was quit. Fortunately I was able to push it, push it, push it and make it all the way through the last two songs of My Running Playlist.

Twas cool running to the Dead. The studio rehearsal from 9/29/71 has no jamming, no wild space, just straightforwardly played tuned, for the most part, and I was was able to use that no problemo for my run today.


on Monday included...

Grateful Dead Steal Your Face plain ol' SYF version

37 Years Ago Today...

Grateful Dead ~ September 29, 1971
Santa Venetia, California

quite possibly the very first studio rehearsal with Keith Godchaux
Veteran's Memorial Building (?) (according to Taping Compendium)

China Cat Sunflower-> I Know You Rider, Bertha,
Brokedown Palace, Bird Song, Jack Straw, Tennessee Jed, Mama Tried,
Uncle John's Band Jam, Me And My Uncle, Truckin', Mexicali Blues

There's nothing tremendously incredible or fun here. There's no jamming. It's pretty straightforward. That doesn't mean it's bad or nothin'. I love Bob's rhythm guitar in China Cat. Brokedown is really nice, Bird Song, too. Jack Straw features a bunch of organ from Keith and not electric piano plus there are different lyrics in parts of the song. The following I found on the ol' intertubes... transcribed from probably the same source, it's practically the same as what's in this recording:

We can jump the tollgate, save us fifty cents
I'd lend you my last dollar but it's already spent
We can jump the watchman right outside the fence
Leave his rings but take his change, now ain't that heaven sent

Ben Blue(?) from Tulsa, two men by his side
Come to even one old score, one small point of pride
Ain't no place a man can hide to keep him from the sun
Ain't no place Ben's gonna rest while Shannon's on the run

Pre-dating its official debut later in October, this is the very first recorded performance of the brand new tune -- definitely a curiosity (and the same is true for Tennessee Jed and Mexicali Blues.) There's some more organ from Keith in TN Jed and Mama Tried; not exactly what we're all used to hearing. The UJB Jam is neat, albeit short with some fun and a little bit of banter included. Overall, even in the track titled Banter & Tuning, there isn't that much discussion or, well, banter between band members. Oh well. Truckin', while much like a studio album version, is nicely done.

Unfortunately the quality isn't so hot but eh, what are ya gonna do? It's still a cool little slice o' the history of this band.


Audio Quality:
9/29/71 [Keith rehearsal]
at Archive.org:

Soundboard - Listening Only
9-29-71 aka 09-29-71 aka 9/29/71 aka 09/29/71 aka 71-09-29 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD download
Small Steal Your Face symbolizing, of course, the Grateful Dead with Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Bill Kreutzmann, Mickey Hart, Ron Pigpen McKernan, Keith & Donna Godchaux, Vince Welnick, Bruce Hornsby and Brent Mydland.  And even Tom Constanten!  songs by John Perry Barlow and Robert Hunter but none by Bob Dylan and none by The Beatles.Download it Right HereSmall Steal Your Face
FIXED FILES for Tracks 2 &3
(delete the original Tracks 2 & 3 and substitute these ... sorry)

222 kbps (average)

9-29-71 aka 09-29-71 aka 9/29/71 aka 09/29/71 aka 71-09-29 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD download

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Farewell Paul, See Ya Next Year Jerry


What's more important than music? Giving. When I came up with the idea for 100 Days of the Grateful Dead, part of that was about Giving -- you giving! Yes, you!! Organizations that strive to help others in this world of need, they appreciate even a dollar or two. Never think that you can't afford to give. You don't have to write a check for a thousand dollars. You don't have to write one for $100. Even a buck or two. Come on now... seriously... who can't afford that? Is your *-bucks double tall mocha latte truly needed in your life?

A great organization that I've had linked for a long, long time is:


The Hole In The Wall Gang Camp was started by recently departed American icon, Paul Newman.

"He was a man of extraordinary generosity, vision, creativity and compassion. His selfless commitment to the welfare of children living with serious illnesses has been inspirational to people around the world. Twenty years ago, Paul Newman founded The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, the first in what has grown to become the world’s largest family of camps serving children with serious illnesses. The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp is part of his living legacy, and for that we remain forever grateful. His leadership and spirit can never be replaced, but he has left us with a clear course for the future.

Paul’s dream lives on in the joy, magic and healing power of Camp."

from the Boston Herald:

Paul Newman and Me:
A Hole in the Wall kid remembers

By Colneth Smiley Jr.
Sunday, September 28, 2008

Paul Newman was a silver-screen legend - but he was also the guy who gave me some of my happiest childhood memories.

As a young lad in Mattapan in the ’80s, I was one of those sickly kids in and out of the hospital, diagnosed with what was then considered a terminal disease, with a prognosis from doctors that I wouldn’t live past my 20s.

Ah, those were the days.

Because of my illness, I got to go to The Hole In The Wall Gang Camp.

Through Children’s Hospital, my parents had heard of this place that offered children with terminal diseases and serious illnesses the opportunity to live a normal life through fun summer activities.

The name was strange, but the fact that it was Paul Newman’s camp was supposed to be a selling point to a young city-slicker cynic who hated outdoor activities and loathed the idea of having to tough it out in the boonies of Connecticut, surrounded by mosquitoes, forced to drink “bug juice” and eat granola all day long while singing corny camp songs.

Looking back at it now, that camp was friggin’ awesome.

It was even better than some family vacations, because I got to get away from worried relatives who constantly reminded me that I shouldn’t do this or I shouldn’t do that. At Paul Newman’s camp, a kid - as sick as he or she was - was allowed to be a kid.

I went horseback riding, camping, swimming, fly-fishing and canoeing. I loved my log cabin. And the young counselors, volunteers and caring staff seemed to make all us young campers forget about our worries so that we could focus on the important thing - having fun.

My favorite part was camping outdoors, roasting marshmallows in front of a roaring campfire where I experienced my first kiss. (Not that that was part of the camp’s agenda - I was just a young scamp and there were some real cute girls there. “Hud” probably would have understood.)

One night, I met Mr. Newman. He came through to hang out and join in some corny camp sing-a-longs. But “Hi, My Name is Joe” and “Kumbayah” can’t really be considered corny if “Cool Hand Luke” is bellowing out a couple of verses.

I’m grown now, and my doctors were wrong - I breezed through my 20s. But I learned to overcome some obstacles by toughing it out like “Butch” in Newman’s camp, which still sits in the boonies of Connecticut, and from what I understand has grown into something even more extraordinary.

So, on behalf of all the sickly kids that just wanted to live life and be kids - thanks, Mr. Newman. You will be missed.

Small Steal Your Face
33 years ago today...

The Grateful Dead ~ September 28, 1975

Lindley Meadows, Golden Gate Park
San Francisco, California

Help On The Way-> Slipknot, The Music Never Stopped*,
They Love Each Other, Beat It On Down The Line
Franklin's Tower, Big River, It Must Have Been The Roses,
Truckin'-> Jam-> Drums-> Stronger Than Dirt or Milkin' The Turkey->
Not Fade Away-> Goin' Down The Road Feelin' Bad->
One More Saturday Night

* w/ presumably Matt Kelly on harmonica
"San Francisco Unity Fair"


One of the best shows of 1975! It's in the Top 5, hands down!!

This would be The Boys' final public appearance for what probably felt like forever to many Deadheads -- their last show until June 3, 1976. It was worse than that for some -- their last Bay Area show until July 12!

But I suppose, if your favorite band is going to go on hiatus for awhile, what a way to go! This is just a, well, it's a Damn Fucken Grate Show. Clocking in at under 1 hour 40 minutes, size does not matter. I'd rather listen to this than some 3 hour shows!

Very seldom will I endorse the notion of a "must have show" but 9/28/75 Lindley Meadows... yeah, it's a show, without a doubt, that Deadheads must have in their collection.


In the fall of 1975, the Dead treated Deadheads to a free concert in Golden Gate Park, a grand statement in the middle of their eighteen-month retirement that spoke of interesting developments among a far from inactive group. Between 25,000 and 40,000 fans jammed the glade below the Polo Field in Golden Gate Park where Speedway Meadow and Lindley Meadow come together for the New Age Bicentennial Unity Fair, a two-day festival capped by performances by the Jefferson Starship and the Dead, billed as "Jerry Garcia and Friends." A local newspaper described it as "music from the two world-famous San Francisco-based rock groups and a variety of ecologically, socially and politically oriented booths, ranging from Smoke Watchers, Ananda Marga, Nuclear Safeguard Initiative to the Bay Area Gay Lib." This was slightly misleading, since some thirty bands had played from the same stage the day before, but the festival's climax was unquestionably the Dead: their first free show in the park since the sixties, and the perfect inverse of the tiny show held held a month earlier primarily for music industry representatives at the Great American Music Hall. This one was for the Deadheads.

The weather cooperated, grudgingly: chilly and overcast, but not foggy or rainy. It was not one of those beautiful Indian summer days San Francisco is famous for. Rolling Stone's reporter wrote about Keith running his hands frantically before they started, trying to warm up his fingers. It takes them a bit to warm up as a group, but the tape shows that the band, once ensconced, more than rose to the occasion. Looser and more fun in feeling than the Great American Music Hall concert, the highlight for many fans was the return of "The Eleven Jam," last heard in January 1970. For many more, however, it was their first chance to hear performances of much of the new material for Blues For Allah, although some had gotten a taste with the radio broadcast of most of the Great American show a couple of weeks earlier. The band's work for the album shines here, too, with well-thought-out arrangements and lots of little instrumental flourishes and vocal nuances that result from a lot of recent, careful work in the studio. And the easy humor and camaraderie of the band also comes through clearly: this sounds like nothing so much as a return to easy summer days in the park--but for 40,000, not 400, and with a much more polished, accomplished band than the one that rented flatbed trucks and barreled into the park for a couple of hours of guerrilla theater eight years earlier.

"Help on the Way" leads off to a great start, slow and loose and funky. Strong vocals immediately impress the listener--lots of studio polish shows here, and all so comfortable and familiar, just working the groove from the first Garcia solo, only a couple of minutes in. This version comes off more languorous and exploratory than the one heard a month ago at the Great American Music Hall, with more of that expressive Dead exploration, "just poking around, folks, let's see what we see . . ." And it meanders so delightfully. This is the other side of Dead jams--not purposeful, but as meaningful as a great ramble in the countryside can be. After a little vocal flub by Jerry on the second verse, things suddenly tighten, for a letter-perfect rendition of the complicated bridge between "Help" and "Franklin's" that is "Slipknot!" You can feel why it's called that, the way it reels in what little slack there was, clinching it tight to that angular chord progression, only to let it relax a bit, allowing everyone to explore a little on the way, drums tapping in perfect tandem, more than one drummer but somehow less than two. The beast is moving, muttering, grumbling, about to wake up fully, with Garcia and Lesh and Keith all playing leads around and off each other, always mesmerizing in time and just hauntingly out of sync. Only Bobby and the drummers keep things unified, and the whole disparate mass lumbers towards the faint "three" heard on the tape, measuring off, everyone in step now, only Phil playing out until he sounds that sonic linchpin, and they've reduced to nothing as Garcia impatiently sounds the theme to "Slipknot!" again, through what feels like a couple of misfires, but they come off so well that the listener realizes, no, this is just a confident band, playing with it all--and into a surprising close, no "Franklin's."

After a quick pause, "Music" begins, with the whole band playing very tight. There's no looseness at all, just that trademark Dead martial rhythm propulsing, everyone sticking close, hints of space only as Donna sings her first solo line: "There's a band out on the highway." "Band" gets stretched a bit, a reminder of the range always present, the many directions to choose from on that highway, but it tightens up, though, straight ahead, no deviation. Which is where it stays, only a few flashes of the atmosphere it can encompass, reined in all the way through Jerry's most expansive solo before the second verse, where they're joined in by Matt Kelly's harp. We get a nice reminder of what Donna can do on the "da-da-da" line in the chorus: a wonderful source of vocal sweetening, a brief moment before the jam begins. This is our postponed catharsis, promised in "Help" > "Slip," ending far too quickly: such eloquent restraint leaves us feeling as if we're still due for some release, somewhere.

There are lots of quick stops in this show. Only a few seconds elapse before "They Love Each Other" rings out, briskly paced from the outset. The mood from "Music" continues. But the pace doesn't affect Jerry's singing in the slightest. He gives it a sensitive reading, sweet and even subdued in its expressiveness, giving the narrative voice a sadness I hadn't really heard before, a wise and worldly appreciation for human love, as if to acknowledge the pain it causes while celebrating its potential. There are some wonderful guitar lines, too: Garcia likes this song, and the range of moods he carves in his solos covers the musical bases of love, from bluesy to lyrical. Deadheads who in later years used this song as a bathroom break should listen to what it goes through here.

On my tape there is a fade-out here, with volume rising to pick up Bobby telling the crowd, "We'll get around to all the old favorites we can remember." Audience cheers push him a bit further: "You wouldn't be clapping if you knew what that meant." Some monitor mix banter follows, in which Jerry includes the audience, saying, "Yeah, we'd like it to be louder up here." The inflection on "louder" makes it seem so delightfully subversive, somehow an expression of the eternally hip and universal values of rock: the crowd roars its appreciation. That's the Dead charisma.

"Beat It on Down the Line" has the same martial authority "Music" had, a steaming groove following a soft, floating beginning, not tentative, but an airy rhythm, heavy with implication, that solidifies shortly into the upbeat shuffle that normally characterizes it--another sign of the lightness that so much of Blues For Allah exemplifies. Matt Kelly's harp is faint but present, adding a nice counterpoint to Jerry's guitar in places, riding along over the top of others. It is easy to see why Bobby wanted to keep working with him after the Dead disbanded. A well-played rendition--but short. And where did the idea emerge that next would be "Franklin's"? One guitar sounds the opening lick, and it's immediately seized; one of those moments when the years drop away and all of the excitement and alchemy and mystery of hearing the next foreordained surprise manifests in one wondrous musical epiphany, and you realize: oh, right, we all wanted this . . . The groove emerges perfectly, from a cold start, no less: the exact sort of airy, open beat that they can all build together, playing around each other, leaving so much open space. There are no stars on that stage, just egoless group concentration inflating this lighter-than-air creation that's growing and rising and swelling and building, staying sparse though the first solos, second verse now, second chorus, no hints of the avalanche yet--such exquisite tension, until Garcia sings, "If you get confused, listen to the music play." And the sonic fusillade crashes down; the beast is awake and roaring, though still capable of being restrained, with effort, and so it is, called back down for the next verse, well sung by Garcia, followed by a strong chorus. Who knows what "Roll away the dew" really means, but it resonates. Some lyrics are missed in the last verse, but it moves sweetly and easily into a final chorus, emphasis on clear, tight, well-sung harmonies, everyone pared back to the sketchiest of musical outlines, just a couple of muffled toms now, with the chorus rolling over the top with that thunderous, surprising, tightly choreographed, resounding end. A "Franklin's" very different from its eighties incarnation.

More friendly banter with Bobby announcing that "Billy would like to make a small point of the fact that we're playing a cowboy tune," and you can hear the grin in his voice, as if he's ribbing his friend. A tight, taut beginning in a classic C&W shuffle-pop elicits some fine Garcia work, a little reminder of the buried Black Mountain Boys influence still at work beneath the electric instruments, even if it is occasionally a little odd to see how much the band really likes this kind of tune. Not that it deflects them, though: it gets transmogrified into a launching vehicle as easily as anything else in the canon, as seen perfectly in the way they all leap in and explode things before the final verse. It's a marvelous reminder of why many of the great San Francisco sixties bands used C&W as a base for psychedelia.

The mood shifts with "It Must Have Been The Roses," and what a version it is. Garcia's voice is at its pure, sweet unaffected peak: a clear, expressive, and young-sounding tenor, with lots of signs of polish and work. It makes for a nice complement to his guitar tone, with its emphasis on clarity and enunciation. This is a letter-perfect reading of the song, from sweet Jerry and Donna harmonies--the best of the show--to a tight, nicely nuanced instrumental accompaniment; from Keith on electric piano to the drummers, spending so much time on the cymbals, to just a couple of hard-struck guitar chords. Everything's in balance, focused with a sense of intensity that lends a sense of urgency to the song, giving it the unmistakable cast of an anguished confessional; even Garcia's solos stay close to the melody line. A perfect rendition.

Phil announced the next song by saying, "The correct pronunciation of this tune is "Truckin','" emphasis on the last syllable, minus the "g," to great applause, as Bobby deadpans "God willing we'll remember the words. All you folks who know the words, mouth them real, real vividly." This reflects how Bobby felt about performing the song, which they had played only a year earlier, recent history by Dead standards. Before the show, Bobby joked with reporters about this being the "rustiest band in show business." So things start easily, a nice steady, reasonably paced "Truckin'" unfolds at the proper tempo for this densely worded archetypal road song: striding along, not rushing the singers too much, always the measure of this song's pace. It's good, solid, and tight, if unadventurous at first, with one blown cue before a chorus, but great vocals. This is a good show indeed, featuring strong, interesting Garcia around Bobby's lyrics throughout, and by the end, the band sounds tight. They do remember, and no sooner do they remind you of how familiar it is than off it goes, Phil dropping out of his conventional role, a stripped-down penultimate chorus, and then a wonderful quick build to the song's distinctive, sweeping finale, the long headlong rush into that final crescendo, left achingly incomplete when one of the guitarists absents himself and the other hits the off note. It disassembles and rebuilds and provides some great mini-crescendos in the course of a long tight intense jam, slowly lowering into space, Garcia picking fast high up on the neck, the band swinging down into that still quick paced but thinning beat, slowed now to nothing, oozing into a half beat, then a slow shuffle, pace quickened beneath the syncopation, building up fast now--where is this going? Could be anything anywhere, so far out and off of anything recognizable: just a wonderful sweeping space over an insistent intangibly floating percussion track, all cymbals and touches and taps, but moving, so quickly--perfect late afternoon trance dancing fare . . . and so long. Then something seems to be forming in the stew, coalescing; no, just another few figures and runs, all mysterious, all deliberate, all working, and hard--but so abstract again, out far, far away from any melody, pattern, chord progression, and even key at times, rhythms all swinging and melding, accents gliding forever until just a few taps, total musique concrète--and into drums.

A percussion powerhouse, the drums duet goes from high, intense cymbal and traps to toms to stronger and more rapid-fire teasing and playing by two drummers rolling rhythms off of each other and into and around and through, dissecting, exploding, and reweaving it in the drummer equivalent of what their fellow band members do to melodies. It seems as if no time at all has passed before we hear a little instrumental lick signifying that the other musicians are back on stage: the drummers are just flowing taps now, waiting for things to be pushed, enveloped, you think. Instead, they do the pushing, with a hard powerful downturn into "Stronger Than Dirt." It works well, on the whole: a few rough spots at first, taking its time getting into its arcane and complex series of jaggedy ascending and descending changes, launching quickly into weird, fast group jamming that can't stray far before being called back into the melody, tough changes that don't come off very well--the perfection that showed at Great American Music Hall, or even earlier today.

But how nice to hear it brought to a conclusion, replete with a theatrically extended little coda. Jerry insistently calls things to a close, even as the drummers begin the telltale Bo Diddley rhythm of "Not Fade Away," everyone giving them room to state things. Then just a few light chord licks from the guitarists--such a spare opening, quick and understated, lots of open spaces, wandering into melody with leisurely digressions on Bo Diddley, "Mona," and a few others before settling into business with a vengeance; a great slide-flavored, acid-drenched Garcia solo, which is really the start of such a long spacey transition to "Goin' Down the Road Feelin' Bad" that you get lost in. A quick phrasing of its final bars at the end of "Not Fade Away"'s jam, then far into space for a blissful few minutes until the rhythm emerges, a faint spiral in the soup and "Goin' Down the Road" forms, oh so slowly, with just a teasing at it at first, backing off, then thumping into it with a drive, bringing a perfect danceable solidity to the deep space it followed. Garcia's sweet folk harmonies with Donna nicely complement the mood swing established by his first solo, which touches the weird before plunging hard into a first-rate extremely fast breakdown--and a perfect return to the sweetness of the chorus one more time. No matter how many times the Dead played certain songs, they were always able to find new things to say in them.

The Dead were always about balance, though, and after a trip the outer limits, they knew that folkie old-time sweetness was reassuring comfort, so they go into a rousing, affirming final chorus, the audience as exuberant as if it were a gospel revival. Momentum is preserved into the steaming chug-chug of "One More Saturday Night," which starts more sedately than its later years. Moving from an off-center trot, it drops into a peppy canter and then picks up to ramming speed by the end in that patented way that the Dead had of filling in a rhythm without changing it, husbanding the beat while covering an almost impossible range of tempos--as impossible as some of the screeching Donna does at the end--but it's a solid rendition nonetheless.

From a fan standpoint, the day was an unqualified success: a breath of fresh Dead in a long season of drought, and a tantalizing survey of what this "retirement" was doing for them musically. Local media coverage was positive, too. The fans behaved well, the band played beautifully; about the only negative was that the show's producers were citied for violating the city's sound ordinance. Even the pessimistic Bobby left the stage feeling "euphoric," according to one report. The last words on the tape are a great final quote from a hoarse-sounding Phil: "Let's have us another party like this again sometimes," to enthusiastic cheers and thank yous. All in all the show was a wonderful "we're still here" statement, retired or not, and a big public thank you to the fans that matched the private statement made to the industry a month before at the Great American Music Hall. This makes a good companion to that more formal occasion, another historic show from an era in the band's history that is poorly represented in the canon. With this pair, we have a slice of primal Dead.

transcribed from:

The Deadhead's Taping Compendium Volume II, 1975-1985 [guide to Grateful Dead music]
The Deadhead's Taping Compendium, Volume II:
An In-Depth Guide To The
Music of
the Grateful Dead on Tape, 1975-1985
[out of print]

Source: Soundboard> Master Reel> DAT

Audio Quality:

9/28/75 at Archive.org: the SBD for listening only
but you can Dload the sweet, sweet Audience source

9-28-75 aka 09-28-75 aka 9/28/75 aka 09/28/75 aka 75-09-28 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD download
Small Steal Your Face symbolizing, of course, the Grateful Dead with Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Bill Kreutzmann, Mickey Hart, Ron Pigpen McKernan, Keith & Donna Godchaux, Vince Welnick, Bruce Hornsby and Brent Mydland.  And even Tom Constanten!  Songs by John Perry Barlow and Robert Hunter and one by Bob Dylan but none by The Beatles.Download the Soundboard Right HereSmall Steal Your Face
286 kbps (average)
9-28-75 aka 09-28-75 aka 9/28/75 aka 09/28/75 aka 75-09-28 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD download

Last Mutterings for September

Alive for at least one more day, maybe two, the Mets are. A GREAT game was pitched by staff ace Johan Santana and so Mets fans can still have hope today for a playoff berth. It's all coming down to the very last day of the 162 game season. 1:00 p.m. on TBS... yeah, that's where I'll be, sittin' my butt in front of that TV praying for a miracle.

Dear Milwaukee Brewers -- LOSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

If the Brewers lose and the Mets win -- October baseball! Playoffs, baby. Oh, but interestingly -- the Mets still suck.

Time for some...

from LunaNina.com... this meme is called: Unconscious MutteringsUnconscious Mutterings

a free association game

The word(s)
:: and I think ... ?

1. Hearing :: loss ... WHAT??!?!?!

2. Aggression :: mean person

3. Charged :: felony ... never any for me!

4. Traveler :: better a traveler than a common tourist

5. Hydrate :: Gatorade

6. Detox :: cleanse the system

7. Qualify :: NASCAR ... I'm not a fan but I have ESPN on and they often show Qualifying for races which determines pole position

8. Prison :: Break ... some TV show in its 3rd season, I think. It's on Fox.
I've never seen it.

9. Frontal :: nudity ... full frontal

10. Pep talk :: Paul "Bear" Bryant ... no clue why that came to mind. He was a legendary college football coach... and I despise college football. I mean come on, little girls playing a man's game? Gimme a break!!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

9/26/73 Truckin' Up To Buffalo


Hey now it's me, Sugarmag. Today is a beautiful day here in East Central Illinois and I have been listening to this here Grateful Dead show that I want to tell you about. It was 35 years ago today, starting just a couple of hours from the time I'm typing this that The Grateful Dead trucked up to Buffalo to play a show. It was the last show of a tour that was sandwiched between the recording and release of Wake of the Flood.


Small Steal Your Face
The Grateful Dead ~ 35 Years Ago Today

September 26, 1973
Memorial Auditorium, Buffalo, New York

1st Set: Here Comes Sunshine, Beat It On Down The Line,
Deal, Looks Like Rain, Tennessee Jed,
Mexicali Blues, Loser, Big River, Brown-Eyed Woman,
The Race Is On, Row Jimmy, El Paso,
China Cat Sunflower-> I Know You Rider, Around and Around

Set 2: Playing In The Band, Sing Me Back Home*, Me and My Uncle,
He's Gone-> Truckin'-> Eyes Of The World->
Weather Report Suite Prelude & Part 1-> Let It Grow,
Sugar Magnolia

Encore: One More Saturday Night

* final Sing Me Back Home
* Eyes->Let It Grow w/ Martin Fierro on sax & Joe Ellis on trumpet *
Small Steal Your Face

Wake Of the Flood was the first Grateful Dead album with Keith and Donna and for those that find that Donna is sometimes kind of annoying, she is not as upfront as she is later in the decade. In the first set, She sings on Beat It On Down the Line but she doesn't sing at all on Deal or Looks Like Rain. Looks Like Rain was grate on this night but I do like hearing Bob and Donna sing it together on later versions. My favorite part of the first set is "I Know You Rider." I feel a thrill every time I hear Jerry sing, "I wish I was a headlight, on a northbound train!" and this is a beautiful example of just how powerful this song can be.

In the second set, Donna does her "OoooYeeaaah!" thing during Playin' but it is still good, still a good version of Playin'! Martin Fierro and Joe Ellis, who also performed on Wake of the Flood, joined the band for the second half of the second set and they add so much. Eyes Of the World is such a grate jazzy tune anyway and the addition of horns makes it even better. Weather Report Suite is a favorite of mine and they play it with so much energy on this night when it was a brand new song.

This is a good show for a fall day. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Grateful Dead poster for 9/26/73 Buffalo Memorial Auditorium

Soundboard> Master Reel> DAT

Audio Quality:
9/26/73 Buffalo at Archive.org:

a Soundboard + a Matrix
for Listening Only
9-23-72 aka 09-23-72 aka 9/23/72 aka 09/23/72 aka 72-09-23 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD download
Small Steal Your Face symbolizing, of course, the Grateful Dead with Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Bill Kreutzmann, Mickey Hart, Ron Pigpen McKernan, Keith & Donna Godchaux, Vince Welnick, Bruce Hornsby and Brent Mydland.  And even Tom Constanten!  Songs by John Perry Barlow and Robert Hunter and one by Bob Dylan but none by The Beatles.Download it Right HereSmall Steal Your Face
Community War Memorial? 9-26-73 aka 09-26-73 aka 9/26/73 aka 09/26/73 aka 73-09-26 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD download
I nearly forgot that it's time for me to pass the hat for my favorite charity. Zoooma's idea was to use the last hundred days of the year to listen to The Grateful Dead and promote a few worthwhile charities and I really like that idea. If you downloaded this show, please consider making a donation to La Leche League, which is an international not for profit organization that provides mother to mother support for breastfeeding.

La Leche League Leaders are volunteers who lead meetings where mothers can get together and support each other with breastfeeding and they are also available 24 hours a day to provide telephone support. When my first child was born I had a lot of soreness from breastfeeding as well as a lot of questions and I called an LLL Leader in my town and she met with me at no charge and she showed me some things that I could try to make breastfeeding more comfortable. You know what? Her suggestions worked and breastfeeding got easier after that. If you have a couple of extra bucks, please consider a donation.

one says one number and the other another
but they were set at the same time. Hmmm...

Calvin and Hobbes in the snow -- animated