Wednesday, September 10, 2008

How About A Little Jerry Garcia?

Small Steal Your Face
What's up? You may have noticed that the posting up of Grateful Dead (and related) shows has been kinda slow around here lately... actually it's been slow for just about the whole summer. Slow to non-existent, really. None in August? Oi. Sorry.

Even listening to shows had taken a backseat. I'm not sure why, it just happens. Even though it's the music I dig most in this world, from time to time I just don't listen to any for a stretch

Then a few days ago I pressed play on a show from '72 ... and wow, how sweet it was! All the music that I listen to for running, it just doesn't compare! Dang it!!!! Why, for the most part, did I stop pressing play on this stuff?!?!?! Stoopid, stoopid, stoopid!

Lately, Inspiration Moved Me Brightly and I've had a pretty groovy idea to get back to putting shows up... that was gonna be in a pretty big way, too. Listening to those tunes from '72 had me totally energized.

Then my dog died. His death was somewhat unexpected (I thought that I just knew that he had more time); I was completely unprepared for it. Aside from sucking in some oxygen everyday, Cassidy had been the most constant thing in my life for close to thirteen years. He was an amazing dog; He Was A Friend Of Mine ... my best friend and his leaving me was a huge blow that I'm still recovering from. My idea of getting back to putting up shows is still with me, and I'm still eager to, it's just gonna take a little while to fully get back into the swing of things.

The Uploading Never Stopped -- I've never wavered for a second in wanting to share these great shows... so in the meantime, I've asked my friend Sugar Mag to step in and help get the ball rolling again.

Thanks, Sugarmag, you're a great friend to have! Stan from South Park smiley

Enjoy the tunes, kids...
Small Steal Your Face

Hey now it's me, Sugar Mag, posting over here at my friend Zoooma's blog. Since I had to shut down my own blog it's nice for me to have a chance to post over here. I have been listening to these two Jerry Garcia shows Zoooma was planning to post and wow! This is good stuff! The first show is a bluegrass band Jerry was in back in 1964:

3/6/64 - Black Mountain Boys
Top Of The Tangent - Palo Alto, California

Jerry Garcia: banjo ~ Eric Thompson: guitar
David Nelson: mandolin ~ Robert Hunter: bass

Instrumental, Katie Mine (??), intros,
Homestead on the Farm, banter, Bare Foot Nellie, banter
She's More to Be Pitied than Scolded, tuning,
They Can Lock Up Me Up For Loving You, The Hand of the Lord,
banter, Who'll Sing for Me, Darling Aller Lee

Source: SBD->Cassette->CDR->TAE->SHN

The Black Mountain Boys was one of many bluegrass bands Jerry played in back in the day, others were The Sleepy Hollow Hog Stompers and the Thunder Mountain Tub Thumpers. That cracks me up :). Here's a link if you are interested in reading more about Jerry Garcia's musical roots.

This is really fun stuff to listen to, it's got a real old timey sound
with lots of fast pickin'. I just love hearing Jerry play banjo. A thought I had as I was listening to this is that Old and In the Way sounds a lot more polished than this, but it may be a bit like comparing apples and oranges since Old and In the Way was an album and so I am sure that some of the "polish" came from the studio. There's lots of banter between songs and it's obvious that everyone is having great time. I think my favorite tune is Barefoot Nellie. Someone said that Darling Aller Lee is a Civil War tune, and I really dig that. The Civil War was such a tragic time for our country and knowing that a song was from that time makes it especially poignant. I dunno, I guess it's the archeology student in me.

The other show (technically, two shows) I've been listening to took place 24 years later, in 1988, with Eric Thompson who was also in Black Mountain Boys. Here's the set list:

7/7/88 - Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band
Cotati Cabaret - Cotati, California

Early Show

tuning, Blue Yodel #9 (Standing On the Corner),
I'm Troubled, band introductions,
Two Soldiers-> Spike Driver Blues (Take This Hammer)
I've Been All Around This World, Gone Home, Diamond Joe,
Rosalie McFall, Deep Elem Blues#

Source: A:C>CD. Recorded at Front Row Table.
Audio-Technica AT 831R mics > Marantz PMD-430 > Tascam CD-RW700.

Late Show

tuning, Swing Low Sweet Chariot,
Short Life of Trouble-> Oh Babe It Ain't No Lie,
Turtle Dove, Ballad of K.C. Jones,
I'm Here To Get My Baby Out Of Jail, Dreadful Wind And Rain,
Ripple, Goodnight Irene#, Deep Elem Blues#

# = w/ Eric Thompson (mandolin), Suzy Thompson (fiddle),
and Ken Frankel (banjo)

Source: A:C>CD. Recorded in front of left PA stack.
Radio Shack behind the ear mics > Sony TC-D6.

I love this music so much. So many of my favorite tunes were played on this day. I really like Blue Yodel #9 and just for fun, I want to show you a cool video that I really like:

This is Louis Armstrong and Johnny Cash playing Blue Yodel #9. No, it doesn't have much to do with a post about Jerry Garcia, I just love it and wanted to show it to you. Besides, Jerry would have dug it. He probably saw it and did dig it :). Anyway...It's all good stuff! Another favorite of mine is Two Soldiers. I don't know what it is about me and Civil War songs, but that has been a favorite of mine for a long time. My only complaint is that as I was listening to it I really wanted to hear David Grisman playing mandolin. Sandy Rothman was good but he was not DAWG.

On the late show, I really dig Babe It Ain't No Lie. Sometimes it's hard to put my finger on what it is I like so much about a song compared to another song, but that one is another of my favorites. It's such a pretty song. The more I think about it I realize that what I love so much about it is Jerry Garcia. This song is just pure Jerry goodness-beautiful guitar and Jerry's voice, it's so soulful. Ballad of Casey Jones is another personal favorite of mine, also I really like Dreadful Wind and Rain. Wind and Rain is just spooky, you know? "And then he made a little fiddle of her breastbone, oh the wind and rain, but the only tune that fiddle would play was oh the dreadful wind and rain..." haunting stuff. Ripple is a lullaby I sing to my kids, and I like this version. I like the mandolin and here I don't miss DAWG quite so much. I really like the Good Night Irene here, too. Good Night Irene is a song that can be kind of plodding and boring but on this night it actually kind of rocked. Here's a video of Good Night Irene from that same year (1988), about a week later.

Small Steal Your Face Download the Shows Right Here Small Steal Your Face

Black Mountain Boys ~ 3/6/64 ~ Palo Alto
7-7-88 aka 07-07-88 aka 7/07/88 aka 07/07/88 aka 88-07-07 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD soundboard download
7-7-88 aka 07-07-88 aka 7/07/88 aka 07/07/88 aka 88-07-07 setlist 320 kbps mp3 SBD soundboard download


Timmy said...

Welcome back. The good, the bad & The horrible happen to us all, I've been told. Music does help the scars to heal. Especially THIS kind of music. Louis is gone, Johnny is gone, Jerry is gone, Cassidy is gone ~~~~~~~~~~ You're cool, for now, soon we ALL gone!

Sugarmag said...

Hi Timmy, Thank you for stopping by and reading what I wrote. It didn't occur to me until reading your comment that Louis, Johnny, and Jerry are all dead. That is sobering. Life is so fleeting, isn't it?

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

Calvin and Hobbes in the snow -- animated