Warlock show in Hampton 1989. I had seen a couple of shows but the Dark Star was another Dead epiphany. I saw then just how much impact a song can have and the collective good feeling when the band and fans are on the same page.
Once in a while you can get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right
CMG my first show (83) i had no idea who the gratefuldead were... grateful dead, molly hatchet, deaf leopard, (all bands i had never listened to) sounds all the same to me... well, i didn't know who that fat man was; i had no idea what it was to be DEADICATED, but that night i had to confront the decision of weather or not i believed in 'god' and weather i would never listen to this band again or weather i would keep coming with the desire to be a key to help this thing go the 'right' way! this truly changed my life and i did become DEADICATED! December 16 1986 also blew me to a new level of spiritual growth that spiked at the chinese new year show of '87 at san francisco civic. boy , that show was the most intense experience of my life! i couldn't even talk about it for 2 years! witout my whole body going into the shakes! then there was another flow of transformation i experienced at the Frost in april30?, 1987, which peaked at the laguna raceway the day the band made the 'Touch of grey' video. that show was personally incredibly transforming...i still wonder what was in the bag 'they' left by me as i was meditating! i came across'that bag' at several other shows after monterey... most noticably at angel's camp in august '87, which stands out again in my list of most transformative shows. i pretty much stopped going after '89
This was my third show. The second set from this night was so friggin' amazing...a steamy night, good smoke and a young mind ready to be shown something new combined with Lost Sailor > Saint Of Circumstance > Drums and completely turned my universe upside down.
Standing at the top of the hill during Dear Mister Fantasy, I found myself standing next to the biggest, bad-ass biker dude I've ever seen. I was 17, tall and skinny, and felt very out of sorts. He scowled directly into my eyes, Then grinned from ear to ear and gave me the biggest bear hug in my life. I'll never forget it.
This show most definitely changed my life. I've passed on the soundboard recodings of this night, as the mix on the soundboard has Jerry low in the mix, and no crowd noise whatsoever. The crowd energy, as with every show from the Summer of 1985, is an essential ingredient in the presentation. God, has it REALLY been twenty two years since the magical Summer '85 tour? "Woah-oh, what I want to know...where does the time go?"
I had a lot of memorable shows . . .by the time i started getting into the groove of feeling like the calendar evolved around the familiar seasons of the boys playing around the bay area i would always have this feeling at the end of the 3rd show in a series of three that any type of angst or stress i was having the week previous always seemed to be worked out i was renewed recharged grounded and ready to handle "normal" life again . . .
One of my first really memorable shows was at Cal Expo 5/4/91. The first set closed with a smoking music never stopped - i was with a bunch of my good friends down in the dirt in front of the stage - everyone was grooving HARD so hard that the whole place was thick and dusty from all the foot stompin' - i was utterly amazed at all of the energies coming through us at that moment . . .
5/19/95 - i decided i would take a solo mission to the front of the stage for second set opener - i had my camera case w/camera, a fat j and a $5 bill in my possession . . .i was very considerate and conscious not to bust in on anyone's space as it was a bizillion degrees and i knew all those peeps were there early to get their spots . . .the boys busted out Here Come Sunshine - everyone started dancing it was eloquent i knew i was right where i was supposed to be - i did not communicate a single word to the 10 or so people in my immediate radius, no words were necessary - kind eyes about - the j appeared and was shared amongst my new like minders and even tho i already knew i was family this moment was one of many confirmations for me . . ..
I can remember an amazing jerry/bruce space solo at shoreline in june of 92 maybe - my soul was so high from those sweet sounds it was incredible . . .
I took a good friend of mine, Helene, to her first show at Oakland prob. 93 december - she had tied glow sticks to her belt loops - which was great cause i could visually keep track of her when she wandered off during space - when she came back she told me the coliseum had turned into the spaceship enterprise and SHE WAS THE PILOT . . . when we hit the lot after the show the first thing we saw was a girl dressed up in star trek clothes selling spaceship enterprise pipes . . . holy shit . . . :)
7/21/72 at the Paramount Theater. Available in the Download Series!
I had seen them before on 11/17/68. Interestingly there is no set list available for that show so everyone else must have been in a similar state of mind.
But back to 1972. They were just back from Europe. "Ace" had been recently released. We missed Pigpen (who doesn't?) but were pleased to find that Keith and Donna Jean were in the band after hearing them on Ace.
Bobby's "attempt" at the Weather Report Suite Prelude.
China Cat/Rider:Always a highlight.
Truckin' - The Other One.
"This is but a dream we dreamed one afternoon long ago."
Box of Rain
Lyrics by Robert Hunter Music by Phil Lesh
First saw The Dead early 70's at Nassau with NRPS. Was hooked but seeing mid to late 70's shows-Cornell,Buffalo,RPI,UVM,Rochester-that sealed the deal.
The jamband scene today is definetly cool-but for those who were there-social conditions,fertility of music in general-what other decade produced recordings like Electric Ladyland,Layla,Blood On The Tracks,Santana,all Dead-not to mention 4 Way Street and Waiting For Columbus and ABB Live at The Fillmore East.
Bands beyond description.
I had already been to a few shows, and of course my first show (Pittsburgh 4/18/78) was certainly amazing, but as I recall, waiting on line to buy tickets for the 11/20/78 show at Cleveland Music Hall was truly life-changing. I was in my second year of college and it was the first time I had waited in line to buy Dead tickets. A lot of people were relying on me, so I got on line about 3pm the afternoon before the the tickets went on sale (at 9am).
There were already about 20 people on line and I immediately felt a kinship. My college buddies would occassionally drop by with some food and hang out, but for the most part I was with alone with a bunch of people I had never met before.
By the morning, we were all friends. I spent the night on the sidewalk partying, listening to Dead music, exchanging stories and partying some more. It was an amazing experience. For the first time, I truly felt part of a fun, important and yes, cosmic scene. Thereafter, whenever I went to a show, I felt like I was home.
I wound up with like 10th row center seats, by far the best spot I had up to that time. So the show itself (which was maybe a month or so after I bought the seats) was also important and is a great memory. When Jerry came out jammin at the start of the 2nd set while Weir was puking off stage, it felt as though JG was playing solely for me. Although I have heard some people express their dislike for this show, I loved it, and still listen to it today.
Next night went to Rochester, saw alot of the same people and never was the same.
Baltimore 72....wow. I remember borrowing my parent's VW and driving up with my friend Mark...we were juniors in HS. Nothing had prepared me for the madness, the sheer energy. I'd never seen people reacting to the music at a concert in quite this way and it never left me.
Then, the last, RFK in 94 during horrendous thunder storms, whick of course only added to the zanyness. Our favorite place to sit in RFK was typically available - upper deck, first row, directly back from the stage which normally sat where 2nd base WOULD have been if DC had a baseball team then! Shortly after we moved to Omaha, our next chance to see the band was going to be St. Louis in summer of 95. That turned out to be a disaster - remember the gate crashers and the tragedy that followed? We decided not to go since our daughter was only 2 and it would have been an 8 hour road trip, not fun for the little one.
Seattle Center Arena -1970 (I think) TheGrateful Dead, New Riders of the Purple Sage and Ian & Sylvia, Garcia played steel for I & S and NRPS. I was 15 years old and had been into
it since the Beatles and the Stones in 64 through Hendrix, The Doors, Cream etc. etc.and
any other variations of rock I could get my head around but this was "different". I felt like I witnessed musical telepathy and was in on it (and I was straight this time). I left that hall and hitchhiked home with a musical buzz that I still carry today. It all seemed to imply possibilities that were not clear to me before that. I've seen them 7 or 8 times in the years since- but none of those shows seemed to have the total connectedness that that one had for me. But just to know that that exists and lies within the realm of possibility will leave me
forever "Grateful" :)
I had seen a couple of shows before but this was my first cosmic adventure with the band and I was sold!!! I was living in nearby Ithaca so the next morning I walked to the corner, stuck out my thumb and began hitchhiking to Hershey, Pa then on to Merriweather Post and so on and so on for another hundred or so shows for the next ten years. Along the way there were more magical moements but there's something always very special about the first time....