• April 6, 2011
    http://www.dead.net/features/blairs-golden-road-blog/blairs-golden-road-blog-breakout
    Blair's Golden Road Blog - Breakout!

    A few days ago, someone on the Internet posted a list of Furthur’s spring tour “breakouts”—songs the band had never played onstage before. And it’s quite an impressive group of tunes, a mixture of cover songs by The Beatles, The Clash, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and others; songs the Grateful Dead played in different eras that Furthur hadn’t touched; and one-offs with guest singers … 32 in all (by April 6). OK, more than half of those—16—are from The Beatles’ Abbey Road, which Furthur unveiled, in order, over the first nine shows of the tour (culminating with the whole Side Two suite on Phil’s birthday), but the band still had to learn all of them—yes, even the brief “Her Majesty”—and cast singers for each. What started out as a cute gimmick turned out to be pretty cool, and it was also special when some of that album’s songs later migrated to unexpected spots in the middle of Furthur’s sets—there was Phil bellowing “Octopus’ Garden” out of “Maggie’s Farm” in Hampton, and the choral showcase “Because” drifting into “New Potato Caboose” in Charleston. Nice! Who was more surprised—the Radio City Music Hall audience when Diana Krall sang “Fever” during an encore segment, or the Hampton crowd that witnessed John Kadlecik leading the group through Led Zep’s late-period nugget “Fool in the Rain”? (I know I was more surprised by the latter—surprisingly good version, too.)

    Breakouts are one way a band stays fresh. They always inject a bit of life into a set, whether a newly introduced tune is performed beautifully or falls on its face—any of you who followed the Grateful Dead through the years know that it can definitely go either way. And you also know that a song you don’t like the first time you hear it can easily become a favorite as it matures and your own prejudices fall. Conversely, songs that feel alive the first few times they’re played can start to “turn” like overripe fruit and lose that initial pizzazz.

    For the first 10 years I saw the Dead—1970 to 1980—it seems like every show I would hear a song or two (or five!) I had never heard before. In the early ’70s, particularly, there was an amazing tidal wave of new songs every tour. But it never occurred to me to actually keep track of what the band played from season to season, so, for instance, I had no idea that I saw the breakout of “Bird Song” and “Deal” at the Capitol Theater in Port Chester in February ’71, and both “Sugaree” and “Mr. Charlie” at the Yale Bowl that summer. I remember other songs that were new to me (personal breakouts!) at those shows that slayed me more.

    Beatles to Furthur:
    “Boy, you’re gonna carry
    that weight a long time.”

    It was that way for me for many years: I wasn’t aware until a couple of weeks ago that I saw the U.S. breakout of “He’s Gone” at Dillon Stadium in Hartford in July 1972. What I remember most from that show was Dickey Betts and the Allman Brothers’ drummers joining the Dead for the last part of the second set. Toward the mid- to late ’70s, as my circle of Dead Head friends increased (and included super-knowledgeable folks like David Gans) I started to become more aware of what the band was doing week to week and month to month, and I also started collecting tapes more seriously than I had been. I remember David got a tape of that first “Terrapin Station” from the Swing Auditorium (2/26/77), but I made the conscious decision to not hear it before I saw the band at Winterland 3/18/77—I wanted to be surprised. And I was! My mind was completely blown by “Terrapin” (my first thought when I heard the jam at the end was that it sounded like Paul McCartney’s “Live and Let Die,” believe it or not!), and I was also fully aware that this song the Dead ended the first set with, “Fire on the Mountain,” was a breakout! (That show remains in my Top Five concert experiences.)

    I recall the great excitement that surrounded the introduction of “Touch of Grey” and “Throwing Stones” on the fall ’82 East Coast tour and the thrill of hearing them for the first time, back to back, at Frost Amphitheatre October 9. The following autumn I fretted about the band’s apparent refusal to give us West Coasters the return breakout of “St. Stephen” we so clearly deserved after they played it in Hartford and at MSG. (Then, when they actually did play it Halloween night ’83 at the Marin Civic it was stiff; a letdown for me). A lot of us in the Bay Area developed a bit of an inferiority complex because it seemed as though the breakouts and revivals always happened away from “home,” from “Dear Mr. Fantasy” to “Revolution” to “Why Don’t We Do It in the Road” to “Help on the Way.” (On the plus side, I did get to witness the first “Hell in a Bucket,” the return of “Walking the Dog,” the first “Keep on Growing” and what remains one of my favorite Grateful Dead memories ever—the first “Gimme Some Lovin’” at BCT, 11/2/84. Hey Jerry, how come you never played “Good Lovin’” > “La Bamba” > “Good Lovin’” for us in California? (We can forgive, but never forget!) I’m mostly kidding, but I certainly recall the anticipation so many of us felt wondering when and if the new gems would pop up in Bay Area shows.

    To the Dead’s eternal credit, they kept introducing new originals and covers and reviving old favorites until the end, though with decreasing frequency. Remember how excited we were when “Attics of My Life” reappeared after so many years collecting dust? “New Speedway Boogie”? I remember being intensely affected by my first versions of “Standing on the Moon” and “Days Between”—surprise breakouts I hadn’t even heard whispers of. Even at the last Dead show I ever attended, at Shoreline in June ’95, many of us were “waiting” for “Unbroken Chain” to finally appear in California. (It did, and again I was disappointed. Beware heightened expectations!)

    The whole post-Garcia era has been so wild, freewheeling and unpredictable that breakouts and revivals don’t have quite the mystique they did during the Dead’s time. That’s not to say it wasn’t totally awesome to hear “The Eleven”—ignored by the Dead for decades—retooled by The Other Ones, or Phil & Friends with Trey playing Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here,” or Furthur doing “Blues for Allah” at Calaveras last spring. Indeed, it’s the sheer variety of the ever-expanding repertoires and the sense that any song could pop up at any time that have helped make this such an exciting time to be going to Dead Family shows. New songs, new covers, old chestnuts cooking again—bring ’em on! I want to hear them all. We’ll have plenty of time to complain about (some of) them later!

    What have been some of your pleasant surprises at shows, either in the Grateful Dead era or post-GD? Are you diggin’ Furthur’s recent breakouts?

    (For the record, here are Furthur’s spring tour breakouts/revivals: “Fool In The Rain” (Led Zep), “Mexicali Blues,” “The Last Time,” “The Mighty Quinn,” “Chest Fever” (The Band), “Fever” (Peggy Lee; sung by Diana Krall), “Alice D. Millionaire,” “Iko-Iko,” “Might As Well,” “Train in Vain” (The Clash), “Blue Sky” (Allmans; sung by Warren Haynes), “Road Runner” (Jr. Walker; sung by Warren Haynes), “Supplication,” “Eclipse” (Pink Floyd), "To Lay Me Down," “All Along the Watchtower,” and all of Abbey Road (though “Come Together” was not a breakout): “Something,” “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer,” “Oh! Darling,” “Octopus’s Garden,” “I Want You (She’s So Heavy),” “Here Comes the Sun,” “Because,” “You Never Me Your Money,” “Sun King,” “Mean Mr. Mustard,” “Polythene Pam,” “She Came in Through the Bathroom Window,” “Golden Slumbers,” “Carry That Weight,” “The End,” “Her Majesty.”)

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A few days ago, someone on the Internet posted a list of Furthur’s spring tour “breakouts”—songs the band had never played onstage before. And it’s quite an impressive group of tunes, a mixture of cover songs by The Beatles, The Clash, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and others; songs the Grateful Dead played in different eras that Furthur hadn’t touched; and one-offs with guest singers … 32 in all (by April 6). OK, more than half of those—16—are from The Beatles’ Abbey Road, which Furthur unveiled, in order, over the first nine shows of the tour (culminating with the whole Side Two suite on Phil’s birthday), but the band still had to learn all of them—yes, even the brief “Her Majesty”—and cast singers for each. What started out as a cute gimmick turned out to be pretty cool, and it was also special when some of that album’s songs later migrated to unexpected spots in the middle of Furthur’s sets—there was Phil bellowing “Octopus’ Garden” out of “Maggie’s Farm” in Hampton, and the choral showcase “Because” drifting into “New Potato Caboose” in Charleston. Nice! Who was more surprised—the Radio City Music Hall audience when Diana Krall sang “Fever” during an encore segment, or the Hampton crowd that witnessed John Kadlecik leading the group through Led Zep’s late-period nugget “Fool in the Rain”? (I know I was more surprised by the latter—surprisingly good version, too.)

Breakouts are one way a band stays fresh. They always inject a bit of life into a set, whether a newly introduced tune is performed beautifully or falls on its face—any of you who followed the Grateful Dead through the years know that it can definitely go either way. And you also know that a song you don’t like the first time you hear it can easily become a favorite as it matures and your own prejudices fall. Conversely, songs that feel alive the first few times they’re played can start to “turn” like overripe fruit and lose that initial pizzazz.

For the first 10 years I saw the Dead—1970 to 1980—it seems like every show I would hear a song or two (or five!) I had never heard before. In the early ’70s, particularly, there was an amazing tidal wave of new songs every tour. But it never occurred to me to actually keep track of what the band played from season to season, so, for instance, I had no idea that I saw the breakout of “Bird Song” and “Deal” at the Capitol Theater in Port Chester in February ’71, and both “Sugaree” and “Mr. Charlie” at the Yale Bowl that summer. I remember other songs that were new to me (personal breakouts!) at those shows that slayed me more.

Beatles to Furthur:
“Boy, you’re gonna carry
that weight a long time.”

It was that way for me for many years: I wasn’t aware until a couple of weeks ago that I saw the U.S. breakout of “He’s Gone” at Dillon Stadium in Hartford in July 1972. What I remember most from that show was Dickey Betts and the Allman Brothers’ drummers joining the Dead for the last part of the second set. Toward the mid- to late ’70s, as my circle of Dead Head friends increased (and included super-knowledgeable folks like David Gans) I started to become more aware of what the band was doing week to week and month to month, and I also started collecting tapes more seriously than I had been. I remember David got a tape of that first “Terrapin Station” from the Swing Auditorium (2/26/77), but I made the conscious decision to not hear it before I saw the band at Winterland 3/18/77—I wanted to be surprised. And I was! My mind was completely blown by “Terrapin” (my first thought when I heard the jam at the end was that it sounded like Paul McCartney’s “Live and Let Die,” believe it or not!), and I was also fully aware that this song the Dead ended the first set with, “Fire on the Mountain,” was a breakout! (That show remains in my Top Five concert experiences.)

I recall the great excitement that surrounded the introduction of “Touch of Grey” and “Throwing Stones” on the fall ’82 East Coast tour and the thrill of hearing them for the first time, back to back, at Frost Amphitheatre October 9. The following autumn I fretted about the band’s apparent refusal to give us West Coasters the return breakout of “St. Stephen” we so clearly deserved after they played it in Hartford and at MSG. (Then, when they actually did play it Halloween night ’83 at the Marin Civic it was stiff; a letdown for me). A lot of us in the Bay Area developed a bit of an inferiority complex because it seemed as though the breakouts and revivals always happened away from “home,” from “Dear Mr. Fantasy” to “Revolution” to “Why Don’t We Do It in the Road” to “Help on the Way.” (On the plus side, I did get to witness the first “Hell in a Bucket,” the return of “Walking the Dog,” the first “Keep on Growing” and what remains one of my favorite Grateful Dead memories ever—the first “Gimme Some Lovin’” at BCT, 11/2/84. Hey Jerry, how come you never played “Good Lovin’” > “La Bamba” > “Good Lovin’” for us in California? (We can forgive, but never forget!) I’m mostly kidding, but I certainly recall the anticipation so many of us felt wondering when and if the new gems would pop up in Bay Area shows.

To the Dead’s eternal credit, they kept introducing new originals and covers and reviving old favorites until the end, though with decreasing frequency. Remember how excited we were when “Attics of My Life” reappeared after so many years collecting dust? “New Speedway Boogie”? I remember being intensely affected by my first versions of “Standing on the Moon” and “Days Between”—surprise breakouts I hadn’t even heard whispers of. Even at the last Dead show I ever attended, at Shoreline in June ’95, many of us were “waiting” for “Unbroken Chain” to finally appear in California. (It did, and again I was disappointed. Beware heightened expectations!)

The whole post-Garcia era has been so wild, freewheeling and unpredictable that breakouts and revivals don’t have quite the mystique they did during the Dead’s time. That’s not to say it wasn’t totally awesome to hear “The Eleven”—ignored by the Dead for decades—retooled by The Other Ones, or Phil & Friends with Trey playing Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here,” or Furthur doing “Blues for Allah” at Calaveras last spring. Indeed, it’s the sheer variety of the ever-expanding repertoires and the sense that any song could pop up at any time that have helped make this such an exciting time to be going to Dead Family shows. New songs, new covers, old chestnuts cooking again—bring ’em on! I want to hear them all. We’ll have plenty of time to complain about (some of) them later!

What have been some of your pleasant surprises at shows, either in the Grateful Dead era or post-GD? Are you diggin’ Furthur’s recent breakouts?

(For the record, here are Furthur’s spring tour breakouts/revivals: “Fool In The Rain” (Led Zep), “Mexicali Blues,” “The Last Time,” “The Mighty Quinn,” “Chest Fever” (The Band), “Fever” (Peggy Lee; sung by Diana Krall), “Alice D. Millionaire,” “Iko-Iko,” “Might As Well,” “Train in Vain” (The Clash), “Blue Sky” (Allmans; sung by Warren Haynes), “Road Runner” (Jr. Walker; sung by Warren Haynes), “Supplication,” “Eclipse” (Pink Floyd), "To Lay Me Down," “All Along the Watchtower,” and all of Abbey Road (though “Come Together” was not a breakout): “Something,” “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer,” “Oh! Darling,” “Octopus’s Garden,” “I Want You (She’s So Heavy),” “Here Comes the Sun,” “Because,” “You Never Me Your Money,” “Sun King,” “Mean Mr. Mustard,” “Polythene Pam,” “She Came in Through the Bathroom Window,” “Golden Slumbers,” “Carry That Weight,” “The End,” “Her Majesty.”)

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A few days ago, someone on the Internet posted a list of Furthur’s spring tour “breakouts”—songs the band had never played onstage before. And it’s quite an impressive group of tunes, a mixture of cover songs by The Beatles, The Clash, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and others; songs the Grateful Dead played in different eras that Furthur hadn’t touched; and one-offs with guest singers … 31 in all (by April 3).

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Ugh, not meaning to be negative, but I saw that tune 6 shows in a row in the 80's, it became a running joke among my friends that if I was there, Day Job was guaranteed. Not a bad tune, but geeez.... On the flip side, my buddy went 25 (yes, twenty-five) shows before he saw Sugar Mag live. We were convinced the band had him pegged in the audience.... :)
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Well, I don't know if its technically a break out, but it was amazing to hear What's Become of the Baby at Radio City. I was also present when they played If I Had the World to Give for the only the third and last time in Cleveland, November 1978. I really loved that song. "Sometimes the songs that we hear are just songs of our own."
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Admit it. The roof would come off if Furthur played Day Job. And I bet they do. And for some reason I was humming Push Comes to Shove today. I think someone, somewhere is rehearsing that novelty.
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What breakouts do you want to hear? I always wanted to hear the GD play Magic Carpet Ride. Even a lengthy instrumental into something like Music Never Stopped would be a mindblower. Note to DGans.....feel free to work that tandem into the rotation.
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I couldn't be happier with the way Furthur has chosen their lists. This is as much fun as I've had on this sight in a long time! Breakouts are the greatest, I suppose, if they get pulled off real well. It sure can lead to things being more memorable. My greatest breakouts would be these, maybe forgetting one or two! First "Touch of Grey", cap centre '82 (frightening....it's a long story),...Help-slip, hampton '83 (Very cool!)...crazy fingers, richmond '83 (just a year, but a sweet surprise!)...Good night Irene, new years '83.....first "Do it in the Road" merriweather '84 (MONSTER SHOW)...smokestack lightnin", worcester '84(another MONSTER SHOW), first runnin shoes/tons of steel/daytripper, new years 84...and I'm gonna have to do the rest later 'cause the breakouts I missed in '85 are too depressing!
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The one and only GD show I ever attended, Stockholm Oct 13 1990, saw the Swedish breakout of EXACTLY EVERY TUNE! Isn´t that crazy or what?
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Among my live show attendances, hearing and seeing Phil's band stomp through Pride of Cucamonga in New Haven (could have been the late 90s I dunno) was ultimate joy. Seeing Hunter a few times after Garcia passed away, and that show, was the closure I needed on the Deadhead life.
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And while not present for a breakout as such, and at the risk of heresy, I'm not above admitting that I've never been much on Lost Sailor. Caught it a few times in 79-80 and distinctly recall thinking "this just isn't doing it for me, and I don't think I like where it's heading." Definitely the low point of the RCMH shows I went to. Would love to report that it's grown on me, I really would, but I'm not big on lying. Having seen Furthur do it a couple of times since still leaves me feeling the same way about it that I do about Corrina - just another 10 minute time sponge. But it's all good. All the wonderful nuggets like Cream Puff War at Gelston more than make up for it. Conversation is always more interesting than recitation, so speak your mind and not someone else's.
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Seein' Monkey (electric) in LA on 2/12/89 with Dylan was un-freakin-believable! Practically lost my mind. Great version, too. Just outa nowhere, WHAM! Loved it and rocked out really hard. Encore on 9/3/88 Capital Centre of Saturday Nite>Ripple (electric) pushed us floating out the door wondering why we were to be so blessed that nite, but "don't really care", we just "let there be songs to fill the air". A magical moment fer sure.
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Werewolves of London. I think it was at UMass in the Spring of '78. All the boys howling is something I won't forget.
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...hearing Abbey Rd.

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Sharing many of these with Terrapin Sedation & JacktoldAlthea, I was lucky enough to catch ~ Box of Rain @ Hampton 3-20-86 To Lay Me Down @ Hampton 3-27-88 Ripple (electric) @ Cap Center 9-03-88 Loose Lucy @ Cap Center 3-14-90 Easy to Love You @ Cap Center 3-15-90 (Revolution, as well) Black-Throated Wind @ Cap Center 3-16-90 and the first east coast New Speedway Boogie @ Cap Center 3-17-91 Plus the Stir It Up & So What bits at Hampton '88, the rare (2nd ever?) Gloria at Richmond 11-01-85, the 2nd Hey Pocky Way @ Cap Center 9-12-87, an Attics encore Nassau 3-30-90, and, at my very first show, the (3rd?) Cryptical at Merriweather 6-30-85. So I feel pretty blessed, though I could've seen Casey Jones on 6-20-92 if I hadn't decided to sit that year out from RFK, and if only I hadn't have been so wiped from the Hampton road trip (and needing to return to classes), I'd have attended the Spectrum 3-24-86 ~ where I'd have caught the final Lost Sailor, the 2nd (and greatest, IMO) Box of Rain, and two songs I never did see, Alabama Getaway & Midnight Hour. But like I said, I can't complain. Even if the Warlocks stand was the first Hampton stand I'd missed in four years (but I was recovering from pneumonia anyway, couldn't possibly have gone). Gotta say, the Further show in Eugene last September paid some great gems: the first Lost Sailor I'd seen since Richmond '85, and all these that I never saw the Dead do: Here Comes Sunshine, On the Road Again, Passenger, & the Golden Road. The Dead doing Alligator -> Caution at at the Gorge in 2003 made my year (Tomorrow Never Knows was wonderful, too), and New Year's that year yielded Stephen/William Tell, Born Cross-Eyed, and Mountains of the Moon. But as for that mystique that Blair talked about, hands down the most overwhelming moment I ever witnessed was Box of Rain. Nothing (out of my experiences) could compare to that one. No one could believe it, it came out of nowhere. I still remember Jerry and Bob smiling at each other while Phil was singing.
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now lets go run and see I think my great "breakout" was seeing Hunter perform solo at the THE OTHER ONES show at Hartford. I had never seen him perform but I bought all his releases. It was an amazing treat for me.
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...I think the lesson we all should have learned by now is never blow of a good show for CLASSES! I mean, you know what you missed at the Spectrum show. I bet you don't remember what you learned in class that day. ;-)

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And to think, they teach Grateful Dead classes now.... I gave up living history for one more day's worth of G.U.R.s! Thanks, Blair, my dunce cap was never quite so obvious before : ) Fun to see all these responses for things I'd have loved to have caught. But Mr. Charlie and Sugaree at the Yale Bowl, now that's just off the scale..... I should add Gentlemen Start Your Engines, 6-26-88 @ Pittsburgh. Brent took a "Hey little Red Rooster" verse that night, too ; ) And Marye, I think it's great you saw the double-breakout of Day Job!
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I didn't go to Woodstock because my dad had tickets for us to see the Giants play the Jets (for the first time) in an exhibition football game at the Yale Bowl! I've regretted that decision once or twice since...
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The first breakout I ever heard was also the first song I ever heard the Grateful Dead play live: they opened with "Terrapin Station" when I saw them the first time at the Swing Auditorium on 2/26/77. Looking back, I know now that Jerry completely flubbed the lyrics, but I didn't know it back then, and the soaring majesty of that song put me on the bus for good. Later that same show, they broke out "Estimated Prophet," and Bobby nailed it. Since I had almost no prior exposure to the Dead, I had no idea that those were new songs for them--I may have been the only one there that evening who liked those songs the most out of the entire evening's sets, since I had no prior favorites that I wanted to hear.
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Blair, for some reason your previous blog "Loving Furthur" is not there where it supposed to be....
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It should be there. I just clicked on the "Blair's Golden Road Blog" tag under "features' on the upper left hand box on this page and I saw it listed...
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...but breaking out Easy Answers in the middle of Music Never Stopped at Giants Stadium was a ballsy move.
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Hmm, here are some of my favs, that I can recall at the moment: Dark Star: MSG '79; Heaven Help & Sage & Spirit: Radio City '80; Caution Jam: Nassau Coliseum '82; Touch of Grey: MSG '82; Hell in a Bucket: Harrisburg '82; St. Stephen & Revolution: MSG '83; Black Queen & Love the One You're With w/ S. Stills: Brendan Byrne Arena '83; Dear Mr. Fantasy: Red Rocks '84; Dark Star: Greek '84; Willie & the Hand Jive: Providence '86; Box of Rain: Spectrum '86; Good Lovin'-La Bamba-Good Lovin': MSG '87; Little Bunny Foo-Foo: Soundcheck MSG '87 or '88; Blackbird: Oxford Plain Speedway '88; Louie Louie: Hartford '88; So What?: Hampton-Rhodes Coliseum '88; I'm A Man w/ Spenser Davis: Forum, LA '89; Dark Star w/ Branford-Nassau Coliseum '90; New Speedway Boogie: Nassau Coliseum '91; Attics of My Life: MSG '91. Gene -Truth does not require your belief in order to function.
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I really enjoyed the Big Boy Pete breakout at Kaiser in '85. I also remember the SOTM in 1989 at Kaiser. Another great memory was my first Terrapin in Philly in 1977, we are standing on our seats in disbelieve during that final jam.
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I'd be thrilled to see Further break out of the 60s (Beatles/Dylan/Traffic) ghetto every now and then and cover some younger alt bands such as REM, Pearl Jam, etc. It's heartening they covered the Clash. More please.Btw, I'm a 60s generation guy - the most important period in rock music development - but love a lot of 70s/80s/90s/contemporary bands as well. P.S. - On a related topic, how about some more challenging recorded music prior to the band taking the stage? When I saw them last year at the Santa Barbara Bowl, the Rolling Stones' greatest hits were playing. As much as I love the Stones, I couldn't think of a more cliched, played-to-death selection. How bout something outside the box like Miles or Coltrane? Once in a while you get shown the light In the strangest of places if you look at it right.
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Blair, that must have been especially painful if you were a Giants fan. "Sometimes the songs that we hear are just songs of our own."
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Did we lose? I can't actually recall. Wouldn't surprise me. Giants were pretty bad in those days...Erratic, at least... I think the Dead were better in '71 ;-)
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For Shoreline I'm calling (and begging for) a full on Lazy Lightning > Supplication. Whooo! "It's got no signs or dividing line and very few rules to guide"
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Jack-a-Roe =) "It's got no signs or dividing line and very few rules to guide"
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I was an enlightened fan through tapes by the time I got to my first show, June 16, 1990@ Shoreline, View from the Vault III. Got the first first-set Truckin' since'85, the year's only Big Boss Man, a seriously extended China> Rider, some meltdown after Estimated,a great jam after Terrapin, and even got my wish of a lot of extra space jamming. But what really killed me was that first west coast China Doll since '87. I'd just heard my first tape of Baby Blue earlier that week, and we got that too. At my second show, the guy in front of me had to tell me to stop singing so he could hear Jerry sing his first Comes a Time, also since'87. On 8.16.91, we got the first first set Dark Star since'71, but the song had already changed into a glorified Bird Song, although Scarlet> Victim> Fire> Truckin'> jam> drums> space> jam> Playin' Reprise was infused with the Dark Star spirit. 12.28.91 was an awesome experience, with the break out of Phil's confidence with a physical, sonic tone that hit you with force. Saturday Night was split in two for the only time, Vince was taking risks and diverting from his usual script, and Bob sang Same Thing out of one of the few genuine GD explorations that year. They took a ton of chances that night! At the weakest show of Shoreline'92, the band brought back Attics of My Life for me and my girl, and that made me very happy. Hearing Rain on 12.12.92 was very encouraging to me on a night when I regretted being alone, with no one to share the Dark Star with. The second run of shows in Oakland '93 gave us Lazy River Road and Eternity (inspiring Jerry to really belt out on Ramble On Rose), then Liberty, Saint of Circumstance, Wave to the Wind (after a hiatus), the last great epic, Days Between, and Broken Arrow. Would we have thought better of Vince had his songs been in the first set? You bet ya'! How bout the guest on didgeridoo, then Ornette? Or my final show in'95, when the entire first set had the band finally integrating Vince completely into their sound, followed by an implosion during the second set Victim. Ouch! Two other shows come to mind. The middle night of Shoreline'92, where every song after Eyes of the World was a song I had never seen them perform, including my first Morning Dew. And later, on July 3, 1994, with a set that doesn't hold up on tape. But that set list was a break out in and of itself! Samson, Eyes> Fire> Box, Terrapin! Breaking out and finding new forms. That is part of the Grateful Dead's primary theme, I think, and I take that spirit with me as instructive towards how to live an interesting, adventurous life.
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For anyone who wants to be a pro musician, that song is the harsh advise one must learn to digest and accept and live by. I'm tired of seeing homeless musicians with great talent and ability who lack any means to truly sustain themselves. I think of that song every day without fail. Btw, you ever notice how the band can be a bit nervous and grumpy before a breakout, and then play the remainder of the night in a spirit of triumph when it's done? I think that this isn't necessarily so, post-Jerry, but it was pretty evident for many a show.
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I think breakouts sometimes made the band a little uptight, and that they relaxed afterward. But isn't it that way for all of us when we're trying something new? You want to pull it off and when you do (or even just get through it) that tension is gone... Doesn't seem to afflict Furthur, though... Maybe it's because they do more and longer rehearsal than the latter-day Grateful Dead.
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Hahahaha! Not feelin' too good myself! (Joe Cocker) That 'Riot CNTR version of this classic song (03/17/2011) was one for the ages! I still can't believe how darn good that show was... I keep listening and just before I press "PLAY" I wonder if I'm gonna feel differently about that night but it just can't be suppressed. BTW, "Day Job" (or Dead Job, as I sometimes sing to myself) contains Hunter's lilting eyes in the lyrics and who can resist that? Not me... hahahaha!
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Seeing Steven Stills come out at Brendan Byrne and break into Black Queen was amazing.
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Having a great team of awesome singers probably help as well. I imagine the next step for Furthur will be a rehearsal to try a hundred guitars and find the most artfully blended tones on stage. I thought the shows I've heard this far sound amazing, but the instruments themselves can use some coloring for a richer, more integrated sound. They really are the first post-GD ensemble that is taking the original music in a forward, non-nastolgic fashion. Phil and Bob together illuminate the subtle rhythmic and harmonc language that makes the GD lineage unique. I'm getting excited for this band.
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Hey Blair, 3/18/77 was my first Grateful Dead show. I missed the Who/Dead gigs at Oakland the previous Fall (couldn't find a ride from Sonoma State down to the Bay area), so I jumped at the chance to see them the following March. My buddies and I got in through a side door that night - dashed in, hunkered ourselves down with our backpacks at the foot of the stage, punched our red dragon tickets and waited for liftoff. I didn't know much about the band at that point, so I didn't recognize many of the songs. I do remember standing at Jerry's feet during Sugaree wondering how he could rip such sizzling leads on a loping countryish tune. Throughout the show, people kept yelling "Estimated Prophet" - I thought they were saying "profit" and wondered why they cared so much about ticket sales and revenue. But when the played Estimated my mind clicked right in and the melting began. I went to the next level during the "At A Siding" portion of Terrapin Station. But what really sealed the deal - and got a skinny, long-haired L.A. hippie transplant on the bus for life - was the Not Fade Away. They took that jam in places I have never heard before, or since It was like the jam fused with my frontal lobes and permanently altered my neurology. I got on the bus that night, and have never looked back. Oh, and I must say, I LOVE Furthur. It makes me feel that way I felt - as George Harrison might say - all those years ago. Peace, MichaelT PS - thank you so much for all your years of writing about the greatest band in the land.
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... at 3/18/77 remains my favorite that I ever witnessed live... Amazing! The St. Stephen wasn't too shabby, either (though short a verse?).
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...to see the run at Oakland Col. in Feb. Last song first set. "hmm this sounds like New Speedway, no dont be silly, prolly just some random blues groove for Bobby to howl over. Hey wait maybe it is." Please dont dominate the rap Jack. Holy Shit!!! That was cool. Busted out In the midst of the Gulf War. One way or another, this darkness got to give.
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Considering the fact that I only made it to 67 shows, I had a very high batting average when it came to breakouts: Box of Rain at Hampton in '86, the only electric Ripple after 1971 at the Cap Centre in '88, Loose Lucy and Black-Throated Wind back at the Cap Centre in '90, and Here Comes Sunshine at Compton Terrace in '92 were the big ones. There was nothing quite like the excitement of a great breakout; it was one of the coolest and most thrilling things you could experience at a show! "I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy."
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That unbroken chain in Tampa April 95 was something sweet, the interlude leading up to the start of the tune, it got quiet, I recognized it right away and stood up and smiled big, a few seconds later, all knew and it was like a wave of sweet goodness that ran through the crowd, and they nailed it, with sound effects intact, Phil's vocal was also very crowd pleasing, then, Visions of Johanna, God thinking about it gives me chills to this day, to great breakouts in one show.The time I saw them do gimme some lovin' was also a sweet experience, Tampa 88, the first notes of the song started with Brent's organ, and it was all over, the crowd went crazy and they rocked it. That Dark Star in Miami in 89 will always be my holy grail, who would know that it would happen, they didn't even hint at it the nite before, then, out it came in all It's Glory, Jerry in fine form, sweetness indeed. The Ruben and Chreise break out in 91 in Orlando was also great, they got write up's in the Orlando slantinel about it being rare and played perfectly. (Which it was) IMO the best version played that year. It's all good, but when you get to hear one you love and haven't heard before or in a long time is just the thing that makes it more special.
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1. Fever2. Ballad of a Thin Man (saw both) 3. Valley Road 4. Maggie's Farm 5. Stander on the Mountain 6. The Weight
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Blair, I agree with you about 11/2/84. Still my favorite show ever, and besides Gimme, most of the show were personal breakouts for me. That also might have been the run where we met, up in the balcony. If that's when you were passing out flyers announcing the Golden Road, then it definitely was. My favorite breakout, however, is when I was invited to the Zasu Pitts Memorial Orchestra rehearsal for the Black and White Ball in 1989. They were the headliners and had several guests, including Chris Isaak, Paul Kantner, Clarence Clemons... and Weir. Their leader Steve Ashman convinced Bobby to bring back "Black Throated Wind" after decades off, and that rehearsal was the first run through!
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  • achiappanza
    2 years 7 months ago
    Breakout fun
    Blair, I agree with you about 11/2/84. Still my favorite show ever, and besides Gimme, most of the show were personal breakouts for me. That also might have been the run where we met, up in the balcony. If that's when you were passing out flyers announcing the Golden Road, then it definitely was. My favorite breakout, however, is when I was invited to the Zasu Pitts Memorial Orchestra rehearsal for the Black and White Ball in 1989. They were the headliners and had several guests, including Chris Isaak, Paul Kantner, Clarence Clemons... and Weir. Their leader Steve Ashman convinced Bobby to bring back "Black Throated Wind" after decades off, and that rehearsal was the first run through!
  • Charbroiled
    3 years 5 months ago
    Break Outs
    1. Fever2. Ballad of a Thin Man (saw both) 3. Valley Road 4. Maggie's Farm 5. Stander on the Mountain 6. The Weight
  • Default Avatar
    six_up_swinger
    7 years 5 months ago
    my fav dead breakouts/revivals....that I was actually there for!
    1. Ripple/Box of Rain2. Help>Slip>Frank 3. Attics 4. Dark Star 5. Revoltuion 6. Day Tripper 7. New Speedway 8. Keep on Growin 9. Scarlet>Touch>Fire ( not actually a breakout but a cool sequence) 10. To lay me down
  • unkle sam
    7 years 6 months ago
    unbroken chain
    That unbroken chain in Tampa April 95 was something sweet, the interlude leading up to the start of the tune, it got quiet, I recognized it right away and stood up and smiled big, a few seconds later, all knew and it was like a wave of sweet goodness that ran through the crowd, and they nailed it, with sound effects intact, Phil's vocal was also very crowd pleasing, then, Visions of Johanna, God thinking about it gives me chills to this day, to great breakouts in one show.The time I saw them do gimme some lovin' was also a sweet experience, Tampa 88, the first notes of the song started with Brent's organ, and it was all over, the crowd went crazy and they rocked it. That Dark Star in Miami in 89 will always be my holy grail, who would know that it would happen, they didn't even hint at it the nite before, then, out it came in all It's Glory, Jerry in fine form, sweetness indeed. The Ruben and Chreise break out in 91 in Orlando was also great, they got write up's in the Orlando slantinel about it being rare and played perfectly. (Which it was) IMO the best version played that year. It's all good, but when you get to hear one you love and haven't heard before or in a long time is just the thing that makes it more special.
  • Tampa Red
    7 years 6 months ago
    Breakout memories
    Considering the fact that I only made it to 67 shows, I had a very high batting average when it came to breakouts: Box of Rain at Hampton in '86, the only electric Ripple after 1971 at the Cap Centre in '88, Loose Lucy and Black-Throated Wind back at the Cap Centre in '90, and Here Comes Sunshine at Compton Terrace in '92 were the big ones. There was nothing quite like the excitement of a great breakout; it was one of the coolest and most thrilling things you could experience at a show! "I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy."