a relative late-comer to the music and lifestyle, but still a child of the 70's, i ignored the GD's music for the most part until i met my husband who took me to my first show in 1988 in Philly. I'd worked OT all week and promptly fell asleep in my exhaustion and exposure to the drift of the smoke in the air. Then we moved back to the west coast and a year or so later saw them in Eugene OR with Little Feat, etc. i was hooked! We followed them as much as we could and for the rest of the time the band was together, we made them part of our lives. i felt profound sorrow when we heard of the passing of band members. And I had tears in my eyes as we revelled in the band's opening show as "the Dead". Now every possible version of the music is available more than ever and it's something that is timeless to me. I can listen to other classic American music like Gershwin (Rhapsody in Blue), or big band music and get the same feeling that the GD music inspires. It's become something i listen to almost daily, and if i don't hear it for a week or so, i realize how much i've missed it and will always love it. So what if the band isn't intact anymore....the music certainly is!
"Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world!"
Dreaming the dream. The dream can last as long as we like it to. It's all an illusion any way, isn't it? Dream your Dream whatever it may be, as long as it's good for you and who knows hopefully it may be good for other's as well. The Grateful Dead music, makes me feel, happy. The music makes me feel connected with everything around me. That oneness. Now here's the Key, feeling that feeling of happiness, connectedness to all and to everything as much as you can. That's what it is all about right now. What ever brings out your passion, what you love to do, then that's what you should be doing right now. That's the future.
Like attracts like.
"When you get divorced you turn in your library card? You get a new license? You stop being Jewish? Three thousand years of beautiful tradition, from Moses to Sandy Koufax... You're goddamn right I'm living in the fucking past!"
"Fuck it Dude, let's go bowling...."
There's nothing wrong with musical legends, but it was more than that. Live the way you want, follow your bliss, find what you want to do and do it. The Dead showed us the possibilities, along with many others, it's up to you now.
Well, for one thing, there is no logical reason why "getting on with your life" and being an intense deadhead or even a part time mild deadhead (which simply means appreciating and enjoying the music, whether recorded of the past glory days or current live remnants thereof)
have to be mutually exclusive! What a ridiculous notion. We can continue to enjoy the music while getting on with our lives. Duh.
Now if there are those among us who are or have become so obsessive/compulsive about listening to the music or following the remnant bands around that it has caused them to devolve somehow in the pursuit of their heroic life's journey thus making them less of the human beings that they should be, well then, that might be a bad thing. But I doubt it. And, really now, who really believes that? Life is for learning and it inevitably involves going through phases, so live and let live; I'm sure these poor souls who are "stuck in the past" will eventually meet their demons or angels and their life altering crisis and will "get shone the light, in the strangest of places if they look at it right."
And besides, I can't think of a better thing to be obsessed about. It sure beats an angry life of spousal abuse or signing up for the military to kill kill kill eat burnt dead babies. Lord knows there are worse things.
And for another thing, how can one "live in the past" in regards to music, especially good music, when we know that music is a universal language and good songs are TIMELESS!
Does "getting on with your life" mean we should just accept what the conglomerate media shove down out throats as acceptable commercial piped out music? Should I rush out to buy the next Britney Spears album? Must I succumb to hip hop? Should I just join the hordes of death metal sociopaths marching on towards hopeless cynical bloodthirsty dystopia? What are you telling me? You want me to abandon the most avant guard, mediocrity piercing, enlightening, consciousness raising, delirium creating, ground breaking, futuristic genre of music the world has ever heard? I don't think so.
Grateful Dead music just happens to be one of the few things left that still provides an antidote and antithesis to the evils of this world. It generates good karma and soothing, healing vibrations and is more needed today than ever. So there.
Considering myself to be a "Deadhead" since the early 1970's (I was a still impressionable 13 year old when I listened to "American Beauty"), I cannot grasp the point of view that holds that Deadheads are living in the past. Granted, the Grateful Dead played their last show at Soldier Field in Chicago on July 9, 1995 and Jerry passed on to the next level on August 9, 1995, but the essential spirituality, the sense of community that the band and Deadheads created for each other endures.
If living in the past means I still enjoy the memories of the music that continues to stir my being to this day, that relieves the stress of everyday life as I near 50 years of age, and that takes me back to a time when I was still a carefree youth (not a middle aged male faced with the reality that I have more days behind me than before me), I'll gladly continue to "live" in the past.
Are you kind?
Well, the energy just keeps on radiating like ripples in a pond. Imagine if u could travel in a spaceship fast enough and far enough away. With a powerful enough telescope u could see yourself and the family at the shows you attended. You could look back into time. Freaky huh!? IT is much bigger than the band or any of us. IT is eternal. All things must pass, but it isn't really a thing in that sense... :)
Believe it if u need it, if u don't just pass it on!
Once a Deadhead...always a Deadhead! And, if you wanted the Dead atmosphere, there have been plenty of opportunites with Bobby, Phil and all. Other than a very few personal events, I cannot remember any other times when I felt so much a part of something as I did when I was at a show, with other Dead fans/friends or even just listening to the music. Once you are into it, it's something that takes hold of your being. The feeling doesn't go away, regardless of whether or not you wear a suit to work everyday. :)
I have my tapes and cd's and even a few bootleg albums. I can slap one of those babies in, sit back and take a ride down memory lane and for a short time be back at my first show in 1976 or back at one of the many memorable shows through the years, with the people I've loved and the other heads I met there.
I drive a mini van now instead of a little whatever, but that mini van always sports a dancing bear or a steal you face on the back window. My kids dance in the living room with me to whatever my fancy is for the day and are pretty savy with the verses. I sew various Dead patches on their jeans.
So is it over? Not for me! I may look like the suburban soccer mommie, but my freak flag is still flying!
As long as there are DeadHeads and the music, the Dead lives on!
tj crowley...i don't need to defend my approach to life/living having been stuck (?) in the 60's. it was/is more than just a band/music..it was/is an approach to life.. a set of principles to walk a path that could lead to harmony amoungst fellow denizens of the planet. thru the dead i've learned about other musical genre's that more tha oikely i would not have paid attention to (and no way to find out otherwise). the combination of the ethics..guidelines..principles and the music does not have to end because the boys dis-banded as "WE" have know historically. the 'phoenix' rises continuously taking on new forms but holding onto the approach w/ fellow inhabitants. could you imagine if everyone would practice their philosophy/religion for more tha one hour a week...it's not move on..it's move thru