Robert F. Kennedy Stadium - July 6, 1986
July 06, 1986
Dylan, Petty & The Heartbreakers opened
Set List:Hell in a Bucket
Me and My Uncle
Let it Grow
Saint of Circumstance
Looks Like Rain
Not Fade Away
Attendees of this show
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At the start of (I think) the 1st set -- it might have been the second -- Bob's wireless connection to his amp stopped working. While he fiddled with it, Phil started giving him a hard time: "Bobby's new-fangled radio transmitter done give up the ghost - he's gonna have to use a cord like the rest of us!" And then, to my amazement, Jerry got in on the act -- I'd been seeing shows since 1983 & had NEVER heard him speak a word on stage, but that day he was in a great mood (so it seemed), probably more clear-headed than he'd been in ages. So he says: "Bobby's having trouble with his electric guitar! Seems the fuckin' thing is broken, man!"
It was hilarious. We all laughed. And then, for some reason, it occurred to me that Jerry's newly-found stage energy seemed like he'd just woken up, so I shouted: "Yeah! Jerry's not in a come anymore!"
A few days later... man, I felt so bad -- not insane enough to think I caused it, but to have made a coma joke a few days before he went into a coma? Seemed karmic, at least, ya know?
Other than that, my most vivid memory of this show -- beyond the heat -- was getting extremely silly while dancing & hugging with an incredibly hot girl I went to the show with during Aiko, saying how we were "best X friends" now (for obvious reasons). A pleasurable day to be sure.
It was so hot on the field. Dyan & The Heartbreakers were lots of fun. The Deads' set was cool, but it was not a good night for them. I think the heat differently got to Jerry(may he rest in peace).
Peace and Love,
Dylan came on in a black leather jacket, and when they sprayed the groundlings, he said, "That's a waste of water." A nude asian man ran up the aisle beside me. Dylan added, "We like to be hot." About three hours wait between Dylan & TP and the Dead. Night fell. Jerry walked up to the mic and said, "This fuckin' thing's broken!" And when Bobby sang "Let It Rain," it did. I drove from DC to Tuscaloosa the next day--14 hours entirely in daylight! And Jerry played his last show before the coma that day (Was it Sunday?). After that the crowds got a lot younger and higher, and nobody really felt like doing it any more.
This was my 2nd show and it was unbelievably hot! I remember being in the press booths and yelling down to Tom Petty and Bob Dylan. They all looked up but Jerry was the only one to wave.
After the show I remember helicopters telling us to leave the parking lot. People were shooting bottle rockets at them and they were hitting them. That was pretty freaking crazy.
I remember some of our friends made t-shirts to sell ... the shirts said "Estimate the Profit ... Dylan-Petty-Dead". Not sure how well those sold! (Dave and Libby???)
I didn't enjoy the show too much because of the heat, and I didn't care to see Dylan or Petty. But I looked down a few rows and saw a girl with whom I went to high school (a thousand miles away in the midwest!) ... we had a good laugh at the reconnection ... funny how small a world can get at a Dead show!
It was about 120 degrees in the shade and my birthday show. The friend I was with was having a heat stroke, we were already in the show; and I sat her down on the cool concrete by the concession stands, out of nowhere one of the (what I think was a) crew member came out and asked me if I needed help. This is when other people were running away, not wanting to get involved; they brought me a cup of ice. I decided to get my friend back to the hotel. We no sooner get back to the room and she wanted to order a pizza, so I knew she was OK; I went back to the show, the security guard let me back in after I told him what happened and showed him my ID that had my birthday on it.
... 9 mile skid on a 10 mile ride, hot as a pistol but cool inside :-)
In The End, We're All Dead!
Me and a buddy drove to DC from Richmond in the middle of the night. Neither of us had ever been yet we drove straight to the stadium with no directions. We got in a line we saw not knowing what it was for. It was for a convenience store and he was selling beer. We each bought a case and started drinking before sunup. After partaking in some happiness we went in RFK Stadium barefoot with no shirt. It was wild. Remember the chick getting naked and running around the baseball diamond while everyone kept the cops away from her? And the best part was watching people jump the gate to the field. It was like ants swarming.
That's D.C. for you. I drove my folk's Caddy up and met some friends. First road trip after getting my license. Also, my first time going somewhere and having vendors sell me beers..."ice cold Bud...$2...". Tom Petty was awesome but I was there to see the Grateful Dead and likely unappreciative. By the time Dylan came on we were very close to the front row. He was wearing Harley Davidson sunglasses with the eagle and H.D. emblem printed on the lenses...that kind of close. I thought that was odd and I also thought Bob Dylan was drunk. I remember Rainy Day Women and the staff hosing the crowd down which made it hard to light up. We met some older guy on the floor who was like the candyman or something....except for He's Gone, things are pretty vague after that. Late night journey to the hotel was interesting and scary...I think my friend's cousin hillbilly from West Virginia who was with us was packing heat which did not sit well with me at all. wtf??? ...I think Johnny Cash wrote about that...'don't take your guns to town...". Luckily nothing went askew. I am wondering why the fuck we didn't go to the show the next day? I think they added it after the fact due to popular demand...(and beer sales)
This was my first show at 17. A very long weekend that started on the mall in DC with God knows how many other deadheads for the July 4th Fireworks. We shot back and forth between the mall and RFK checking out the different scenes. I still remember my mother looking like she was going to die when my friend from school pulled up with his sister and her friends in an old Winabago and everyone in tie dyes started spilling out. I know my father saved me because I could see the "this isn't a good idea" look on her face and then the turn to my father and his "let him go" in response. I picked up my first tie dye that day and with the heat and sweat it bled all over over my white shorts until I had a tie dye matching set.
The whole scene was a mind blower at 17 and I remember the feeling that I was where I was supposed to be. That made the whole deal with Jerry falling into a coma a few days later harder to take but for that day I was in heaven. I remember it as a long hot lazy day by the river. I just took the whole thing in with a smile on my face the whole time. The Dylan and Petty sets were fairly unmemorable besides Dylan in leather and the heat being crazy and people being hosed down on the field. Listening back to the show now I'm surprised that Sugaree didn't hit me but perhaps I was still in the taking it all in mode. Row Jimmy on the other hand was just perfect with a cool breeze blowing across the stadium about then. Slippery is how Jerry described it at times and thats what I recall, eyes closed enjoying the sound. From there everything just flowed with Althea and let It Grow in particular getting my attention.
Second set, again the Aiko that hits me now didn't but the Looks Like Rain is still my favorite and He's Gone kept the flow going. By the time we got to Not Fade Away I was exhausted and Brokedown Palace washed over me and the breeze off the river was back in full force. Perfection!
A show and a day I'll never forget and the start of a 9 year ride I wouldn't give up for anything. I was most definitely on the bus from then on. It's funny, it was a rather subtle show (in a good way) listening back now but it was the perfect introduction! Things got crazy after that but I would take more shows like that anytime!
This was my first show.
I was a 16 year old high school kid from suburbia who was infatuated with a girl. As I remember it she asked months before if I wanted to go with her, "Uh... yeah!" Went to sleep out for tickets at RFK with her. I remember that being this crazy ass party. She brought me a joint she got from some dude. I had not yet inhaled. It was strawberry flavored rolling paper - ick! Smoked and promptly fell asleep on a grassy hill outside of RFK. Things went screwy in the months that followed and she asked if I would sell my ticket back so her friend could go instead. I had bought Skeletons From the Closet and was lovin' it. "No way!" was the answer. We ended up going together in my '72 Datsun 510. Got there early. HOT! Heading in she hooks up with a group of older dudes, takes a few puffs, drops me like a stone, and is gone gone gone. I dutifully head to my assigned seat. Way the hell up in the upper decks. I remember Dylan being in black leather and thinking how the hell was that possible in the heat. Don't remember Petty which is too bad. Totally remember Saint of Circumstance and LL Rain. Dude behind taps me and hands me a joint at some point and then I really started to dig in. I remember being really drawn in by Brokedown. It hit a chord deep. Was hooked after that. 50 plus shows later I found myself in the same stadium in the hot summer of '95 for another show. I wondered if she was there too. Were you Amy S? It turned out to be my last show. Fittingly, the encore was the same as the first, Brokedown Palace. Thanks for a real good time Jerry! Oh, and thank you Amy!