Grateful Dead

Bay Area Jam Band Stars Align To Honor Fallen Roadie, Raise Funds

By Blair Jackson

On January 12, a glittering cavalcade of Bay Area jam band stars will gather for a special one-of-a-kind benefit show at Slim’s nightclub in SF to honor the memory of the late roadie Steve Block and to raise money for Sweet Relief, a wonderful non-profit organization dedicated to helping musicians with medical expenses.

Steve was a longtime fixture in the Bay Area music community before his death from a heart attack in September 2010. For years, he worked as a security “Bluecoat” with Bill Graham Presents and doing “whatever needed to be done backstage and other places,” says David Nelson. “It seems like he was always around. He was there through the New Riders years, and later he did a stint with us in the David Nelson Band, helping us out with our equipment. He also played guitar, and I heard him play a little.”

“I saw him backstage at a million events,” David Gans adds. “He was always somebody’s guitar tech or stage manager making sure the show got going on time; he always doing something. He was a total sweetheart.”

Nelson: “We really loved him. He was a humorous, jovial, totally charming guy.

Besides working with the David Nelson Band, Steve was also associated with Zero and Steve Kimock, the JGB and various other local groups.

The Slim’s benefit promises to be an amazing and inspiring night of music. The lineup includes:

The “Steve Block All-Stars”— Melvin Seals (JGB), Greg Anton (Zero), Stu Allen (ex-JGB), Robin Sylvester (RatDog) and guests.

The David Nelson Band—DN, Barry Sless, John Molo, Mookie Siegel and Pete Sears. Without a doubt, one of the coolest bands around!

Bay Area All-Star Jam— Lots more musicians pay tribute to Steve, including Pat Campbell, Mark Karan (RatDog, Jemimah Puddleduck), Peter Albin (Big Brother), Barry Flast, David Gans, JC Flyer, Bill Cutler, David Perper and many others.

The show starts at 7 p.m. and tickets are $25, available from Slim’s. For more about Sweet Relief and the fine work they do, check out their website: www.sweetrelief.org.

See you there!

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47951/2 franklin blvd.
eugene, OR 97403
United States
44° 1' 45.0948" N, 123° 1' 36.4692" W
Joined: Dec 26 2008
Block memorial

Coming down from Eugene ! great lineup great cause ! sure to be a fun time

hamal's picture
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Oakland, CA Emeryville, CA
United States
Joined: Aug 21 2007
Hmmmm...

I worked there for all of 1990 and the second half of 1991...

marye's picture
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Oakland, CA
United States
Joined: May 26 2007
whoa...

we probably know some of the same people!

hamal's picture
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Oakland, CA Emeryville, CA
United States
Joined: Aug 21 2007
I used to work at Slim's as a

I used to work at Slim's as a security guard over 20 years ago. Saw some great music there:
Koko Taylor, Albert King, Dr. John, John Zorn's Naked City, the Skatalites, Freddy Fender, Flaco Jimenez, Clarence Carter, Kris Kristoferson, Bobby Blue Bland, Bootsy Collins, Sun Ra, NRBQ, Zero, Screaming Jay Hawkins, Rickie Lee Jones, the Bill Frisell Band....Once my gray matter wakes up today I may have to make a second list.
They used to know how to book 'em there!

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Oakland, CA Emeryville, CA
United States
Joined: Aug 21 2007
looks like fun

I might have to get my lazy ass up and go out from the comfort of my East Bay hovel...

marye's picture
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Oakland, CA
United States
Joined: May 26 2007
and of course

Sweet Relief is a really important cause, too, as many musicians can attest.

marye's picture
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Oakland, CA
United States
Joined: May 26 2007
this should be

a really great event!

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