There isnt a day that goes by the I dont listen, hum or sing a Dead song.....Its not just the music its a way of life ....Hell my two year old son dances when he hears the Dead.....Does that mean we should all give up on life too, If were willing to give up on the music weve been raised on?
"Life isnt measured by how many breaths you take,But by how many moments that take your breath away"
We Listen.....If It Feels Good We Shake
We all know The Dead has marched on to a new place. If the boys are still willing to play, then I am still willing to go and enjoy what they have to offer. It's not the same, but that is ok. Life is all about change. Let's just enjoy what we have and run with it!
I think Offbeat Andy hit the nail on the head. Most of us, if not all of us are still grieving. The grieving process has a path and each of us travel that path in different ways and at different speeds. MOST IMPORTANT... is that ALL of us here are finally venting our feelings of anger,sorrow,denial,finality,loss,etc. I know I'm going thru something. Ihave a large,beautiflly framed litho of Jerry over our bed, a picture of JG playing and"8/1/42 -- 8/9/95" typed beneath sitting on a table in my hallway,and my lic. plate frame says --" 8 - 9 - 95 " on the top and "... Then He Flew On " on bottom. All this came after Jerry died and before that day I had been to 130 or so shows and didn't even own a tie-dye shirt. I think Andy is right and perhaps we are finally dealing with the grief - out loud.
What does that really mean: "Get on with your life." Are they saying, stop being a Deadhead, or stop listening to their music? Because the music never stops and the music never dies. For all of those people, self included, who were and are touched by the music, there is no "getting over it." It is a part of who we are. It's wrapped in our life experiences, part of our bones, our tissues, our memories.
For me, the Dead has become the figurehead, the icon of a lifestyle. It is keeping music alive and loving the experience and magic that occurs when like-minded people gather and listen to music. Grateful Dead is timeless, their music is timeless and I think they helped open the floodgate to so many other bands and festivals. Every time I get an invite to a fledging festival celebrating music, I can't help but hear the chords from Jerry's guitar jamming a happy grinning beat in my mind. So what if the "Grateful Dead" itself isn't playing music any more?? So many people are still listening to the music, being inspired by the music, and living their lives in the spirit of all the music stood for! New music is still being created in that same spirit. The wheels are still turning on that bus, baby! Keep 'em turning.
1. No. I bought the first 'official' Dead album at a school record sale when I was in 8th grade. Even though people argue about it, I spent a month or so listening to it everyday (form the "Golden Road" collection) and love it even more - instant reverse transport ========>
2. When I wasn't blasting Good Mornin' Little School girl, I was switchin' to the Taj Mahal version on "Take a Giant Step" - a must listen. Around the same time I was stuck on "Unbroken Chain" from Mars Hotel - it was like I was hearing that song for the first time. Amazing.
3. I love my life now: I have an 8 year old daughter, I'm sober almost 29 years, and I actually have a job that's fairly respectable - I'm a psychology professor- but I love not only what the Dead (along with others) represent (to me), but more importantly, the music is just so incredible!
4. I'm hoping to celebrate my 50's (I'm now 52) by seeing some form of the Dead - I saw almost everyone else in the 60's and 70's but never the Dead. Hope I'm not too late and that I can take my daughter.
5. Of course, I am still an almost daily listener of Dylan (new and old - "Love and Theft is amazing), The Band, Leon, War, James Brown . . .
I went to two Dead shows in the late 80s, but not because I was interested in the music as much as I was scoring something. I had a friend that worked so hard to get me hooked on the music, but my head just wasn't there yet. Who knows why. It's all timing. Fast forward almost 20 years later and another friend re-introduces me to the Dead and man, something just clicked. I don't have the answers as to why it hit me now, but it didn't then. But I what I do know is the music is timeless. It speaks to my spirit and brings me joy now, in 2007, as much as I'm sure it did 35 years ago to every man, woman, and child who felt the connection. Shit, life is too short to let go of those things that bring us pleasure. And if a person can find something that still, after all this time, can make their head bob and make their soul feel alive then who the hell is anyone to judge that?
Oh yeah, and I really miss tripping at those shows. What a blast.
I will always love the Grateful Dead. I miss the shows and the scene and nothing has ever really replaced that in my life. But that is not to say my life isn't full and satisfying today. I still play music, I still listen to the old tapes, and I really love this web site. Tomorrow I am going to go and see Bruce Hornsby and Ricky Skaggs and I know it will be great. But it won't hold a candle to those Dead shows. Unfortunately the Grateful Dead trip is all nostolgia now. But what amazing times they were. Great memories.
The Dead is always a part of my life. The spirit is in my heart and soul. I still consider myself a Deadhead and always will.
It's not like Jerry died and the next day I transformed into "The Man". The only thing constant in life is change and the fact that I'll be a Deadhead until the day I die. The Dead is a part of me, I couldn't change that if I wanted to.
After Jerry died, I still did tours (Phil & Friends, Phish, The Dead, Gov't Mule, etc.) Eventually, the touring lifestyle began to wear on me a bit. I fell into a job that eventually turned into a career that I love. Did I cut my hair because of the career? No. My hair is thinning and receeding (getting old) and long hair on me just doesn't work anymore.
So, my beautiful wife and son and I have just bought a split-level house with a nice yard in suburbia. I haven't gone to a show in a few years. I barely have enough time to jam on my guitar (although I do drum circles with my 3 year old). I've gained about 30 lbs. since my touring days.
If you compared a snapshot of me 15 years ago, compared to one today, it's night and day. Totally different. Does that make me any less of a Deadhead? Impossible. The Dead is and always will be a part of me.