Wednesday, September 24, 2008

100 Days Of The Dead... and Jerry, too!

MIDDLE----BANNERMerl Saunders & Jerry Garcia

Yesterday, September 23, if my intensely difficult mathematical calculations were correct, was the beginning of the Final 100 Days of 2008.

An idea I came up with was during those 100 days it would be great to listen to the Grateful Dead and related family bands each and every day and I'd post up as many shows as possible. Now, there won't be one every single day but I hope to put one up most days.

These 100 Days I had intended to be a fundraiser for some charities that I feel are very worthwhile to donate to. I know money is tight for many but listen, even a single dollar or two is appreciated by organizations that do great things in the world. Globally, locally, wherever they work to better the lives of others, they need monetary help. I'm not ready yet to be raising funds to disperse at the end of the 100 days but I hope to soon. We'll see what happens. In the end it might not be fundraising at all but links to charitable organizations for you, the reader, to browse if you wish. Until then, hey, check out Network For Good! They've got links to a bazillion charities which you can search by type and location as well as info concerning organizations looking for volunteers for you to lend a hand in what they do!


37 years ago today...

September 24, 1971
Jerry Garcia, Merl Saunders,
Tom Fogerty and Friends (John Kahn & Bill Kreutzmann)
Lion's Share - San Anselmo, California

Early Show: Save Mother Earth (instrumental) Imagine (instrumental),
One Kind Favor, I Was Made To Love Her (instrumental),
Baby What You Want Me To Do?, Biloxi

Late Show: Hi-Heeled Sneakers, Man-Child (instrumental)
Summertime (instrumental), That's The Touch I Like,
Annie Had A Baby WPLJ

Small Steal Your Face

What can we possibly know about this show in relation to earlier Jerry & Merl? I browsed Garcia setlists for '71 and saw there were close to two dozen Garcia-Saunders shows before this one -- Setlists Unknown. One show from May has a recording of Save Mother Earth but that appears to be the one song from these two that we have a recording of prior to this show. Everything else here, I do believe, we get to hear from Jerry for the very first time... sort of. One Kind Favor was done by the Grateful Dead in '66 and so was Hi-Heeled Sneakers. Still, almost all the tunes on this night are rare; none were played very often. For Annie Had A Baby-> WPLJ, this is all we have.

One of only two original songs here (co-written by Merl Saunders) is Save Mother Earth. That gets rolling nicely along only to eventually melt into a nice bit of space-like territory before what kind of sounds like John Lennon's Imagine. To my ears it sounds for a moment like Imagine then more like Weather Report Suite Part 1 ... and then, uh, it's just music. It's almost a good thing "Imagine" doesn't last long because it's on other tunes the band really gets to play.

One Kind Favor has a great bluesy feel and Jerry is perfect. I Was Made To Love Her features a lot of great Merl and at 10 minutes long, it seems too short because it's so good!! Tom Fogerty (who plays rhythm guitar) I think (I'm pretty sure) takes the reigns (lead vocals) on Jimmy Reed's Baby, What You Want Me To Do? This could've been jammed out but it's rather brief. To close things out, Jerry takes Jesse Winchester's Biloxi for a spin. Wow. What a beautiful ballad here. Jimmy Buffett later covered Biloxi but his version is nowhere close to being as nice as this. Unfortunately (why?! why!? why?!) Jerry ditched this tune when it could easily have survived well into the later JGB years. No such luck and this is one of only 3 known performances. Dang it!

Right away the late show feels somewhat different in that John Kahn seems to be a lot more audible than he had been. He really helps drive Hi-Heeled Sneakers. So nice.

Merl's original tune Man-Child picks up the pace even more. Jerry is just perfection and here again John is adding on bass (hmmm... what if they got rid of that Phil guy and let John play bass with the Dead? HA! Just kidding!) and Billy's drumming is great, as well.

Whatever this Summertime tune is, I haven't a clue in the world. It's yet another only known to have been done a few times. Due to all the unknown setlists for Jerry & Merl from this time, it very well could have been somewhat of a standard for them back in these early days of Garcia-Saunders. We just don't know. It's almost got a Death Don't Have No Mercy feel in parts. Merl's Hammond B-3 is gorgeous alongside Jerry who is just SMOKIN' at times. Mmmmm.

That's The Touch is probably the song that most Deadheads are likely to know from this show. Jerry later recorded it (in 1974) for his Compliments album but it wasn't included until the All Good Things box set re-release of Jerry's albums in 2000-something. It was also included on the 2000-something Garcia release of
(primarily) 1975 Legion of Mary material.

Fogerty takes the vocals again on the one and only recording we have of Annie Had A Baby-> WPLJ. It's a fun way to close the show.

One might argue, even if they're not that great, that all the shows we have to listen to are historic. I think this one certainly ranks up there in the history of Jerry recordings outside of the good ol' Grateful Dead. What's here isn't that long, it's not unbelievable, but it is great and to paraphrase my good friend Sugarmag -- "It's Jerry Fucking Garcia!"

Source: Master Soundboard Reels -> Cassette -> DAT -> Digi001 -> SHN

Audio Quality:
9-24-71 aka 09-24-71 aka 9/24/71 aka 09/24/71 aka 71-09-24 setlist 320 kbps mp3 Soundboard 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
320 kbps


Timmy said...

Excellent, excelling, compelling, grapling... Keep up the good work, only 98 days to go!

Sugarmag said...

Hiya Zoooma, I am so excited about your hundred days of The Dead idea, this is going to be fun. I wanted to tell you that I listened to it and Summertime is from Porgy and Bess. You're right it does sound a little like Death Don't, beautiful! Yeah, Merle's Hammond sounds great and Jerry is Jerry, smokin'. I love this!

Zoooma!! said...

Hey Now Timmy! Thanks for your second comment in a row on my 100 Days of the Dead. I hope you dig a bunch of the stuff I'll put it up and I look forward to any more comments you care to put up! Take Care, talk to ya later!

Sugarmag! Do i know you?

jointathan said...

OK. This is my third comment today 'cause this is my third download today and havin' just now, the other day, discovered this here blog, I landed at the moment of the discontent of the blogmaster for people not commenting. I understand your frustration, but for some people it's a stretch. Any ole' how, makin' all this killer Garcia available for the masses is a certainly laudable act and thank you very much.

keith h said...

Thanks! I'm glad that there's still people like you out there generous enough to let everyone have this great music. I can't wait to hear this early Jerry and Meryl!!

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

Calvin and Hobbes in the snow -- animated