This was the first show that I took my boys to. After it was over they were hooked.
Had a great time even though the show was marred by Tom Petty and Bob Dylan.
I was 18 and really wanted to experience the dead's magic. I loved the whole show though Bob Dylan was a little bit of a let down because it was hard to hear. Trucking was worth the price of addmission.
This was the first Dead show I worked at as a stagehand. I moved to Santa Cruz a year or so later and started working stage for Bill Graham Productions. Must have worked at about 100 shows over the next few years. I was in my 20's and really didn't appreciate what I was witnessing at the time. Looking back they were some of the most interesting days of my life and really was a long strange trip. Been living in Australia for the past 15 years and heard about Jerry on the radio, time stood still............
MAN WHERE DO I BEGIN. I WAS JUST THINKING TO MYSELF, "DO I TELL THE WHOLE STORY OR JUST HIGHLIGHTS". LET'S JUST GO WITH HIGHLIGHTS BECAUSE I DONT WANT TO WEAR ANYBODY'S PATIENCE THIN.
I REMEMBER WE HAD LEFT MY FRIENDS HOUSE AND WE WERE HAPPY AS HELL TO GET ON INTERSTATE 71 NORTH. WE WERENT TO FAR OUTSIDE OF THE CITY LIMITS WHEN I NOTICED THAT I DIDNT HAVE MY TICKET IN MY SHIRT POCKET. I AM SURE I SAID SOMETHING LIKE "OH SHIT MY FUCKIN' TICKET". SO WE TURNED BACK AROUND AND WENT BACK TO MIKE'S HOUSE AND SURE ENOUGH THE TICKET WAS IN MY OTHER SHIRT IN THE OTHER CAR. TALK ABOUT PANIC.
WE ARRIVED INTO AKRON AND WERE RUNNING BEHIND AND A NICE GENTLEMAN HELPED US WITH DIRECTIONS TO THE SHOW-THANKS TO WHOMEVER YOU WERE. WE HAD TO GET IN IN GEAR BECAUSE WE KNEW WERE LATE AND WITH ALL THE EXCITEMENT THAT WE HAD, TIME WAS OF THE ESSENCE, BUT MY OTHER FRIEND, WHOM BY THE WAY WAS KIND OF A DRAG NEEDED TO SELL HIS EXTRA. I THINK HE THOUGHT HE WAS GOING TO MAKE A PROFIT ON THE TICKET OR SOMETHING. AS WE WALKED UP THE GRASS, HE FOUND A CAT AND ERIC NAMED HIS PRICE, BUT THE BUYER SAID DUDE THE SHOW HAS ALREADY BEGUN YOU CANT HELP ME OUT ON THE PRICE. IN THE END ERIC SOLD THE TICKET AT A BETTER PRICE.
SO NOW WE ON TO THE SHOW, BUT MY FRIEND I NEEDED SOME CHICKLETS AND IF THE HEAVENS WERENT GOOD ENOUGH ALREADY I BUMPED RIGHT INTO MY FRIEND CRIS AND IF I AM NOT MISTAKEN HE WAS HANGING OUT BY THE TRUNK OF HIS BLUE CAR, QUITE POSSIBLY A FOUR DOOR CAPRICE, BUT THAT ISNT NEITHER HERE NOR THERE. SO CHICKLETS IN HAND OFF WE WENT. ONE LAST THING WAS SOMETHING TO SMOKE. BEING NEW TO ALL THIS "LOT" BUSINESS WE WERENT REALLY SURE OF THE PROTOCOL, BUT BACK IN THOSE DAYS IT WAS OBVIOUSLY MUCH COOLER BECAUSE THIS BRITISH CAT WAS OPENLY TELLING PEOPLE WHAT HE HAD.
SO REMEMBER WE WERE TEENAGERS IF I HADNT MENTIONED THAT BEFORE, SO THAT CAUSED A BIT OF "HOW DO WE DO THIS" TENSION FOR US. NEVER THE LESS WE ASKED "HEY, CAN YOU HELP US"? HE SAID "SURE". "WE SAID WHAT KIND IS IT"? HE SAID "MEXICAN". WE ASKED LIKE TWICE "IS IT ANY GOOD"? ALL HE SAID IN A SORT OF "ARE YOU STUPID" VOICE, "IT'S MEXICAN". SO WE HAD MEXICAN-THE NEXT DAY WHEN IT WAS ALL SAID IN DONE, MIKE AND I BOTH REALIZED WHY HE USED THAT TONE OF VOICE IN THE FIRST PLACE. WOULD HAVE BEEN BETTER TO HAVE SMOKED DIRT-HAHA.
I SAW TWO PEOPLE THAT I KNEW FROM COLUMBUS. JEFF BASSO WALKING DOWN THE STEPS TORWARDS THE FIELD. I YELLED "HEY BASSO" AND WE WAVED TO EACHOTHER. THERE WAS ONE OTHER KID, NOW I DONT REMEMBER HIS NAME, BUT HE WAS A GOOD KID. THE REASON I SPEAK IN A TONE AS IF THEY WERENT HERE ANYMORE, IS BECAUSE THEY ARENT. I HOPE THAT THEY ARE BOTH RESTING WELL AND I WOULD LIKE TO SAY THAT YOU WERE BOTH GREAT.
THE NIGHT WAS A TRIP, OBVIOUSLY, AND I AM GLAD I TOOK IT. I REMEMBER I BOUGHT A VERY SIMPLE SHIRT THAT MERELY SAID "HEADS ACROSS AMERICA" IT WAS OF THE U.S. IN RED WITH I BELIEVE THE TOUR CITIES IN BLUE ALONG WITH THE MAIN LOGO. CATCHY LOGO BECAUSE THAT WAS THE SAME TIME THAT THEY DID, YEP YOU GUESSED IT "HANDS ACROSS AMERICA". UNFORTUNATELY I DONT HAVE THEY SHIRT ANYMORE.
I BOUGHT A FEW STICKERS. ONE OF THE BLUE BACKGROUND WITH YELLOW AND RED STAR SPLASH AND ALSO THE "SILLY RABBITS TRIPS ARE FOR KIDS".
MY FRIEND AND I WERE DEADHEADS FROM THE POINT ON. THE OTHER GUY ERIC...WELL, HE WASNT.
GREAT TIME AND A REAL LIFE CHANGING EVENT FOR ME AND POSSIBLY MIKE. NEVER THE LESS I WAS ON THE BUS.
ONE LAST NOTE BEFORE I GO. I REMEMBER SOMETHING WASNT RIGHT WHEN JERRY LEFT THE STAGE AND BOB TOOK OVER THE VOCALS. I DIDNT KNOW ALOT, BUT I DID KNOW THAT IT ISNT A GOOD SIGN WHEN THE LEAD GUITAR PLAYER LEAVES THE STAGE. AS WE ALL KNOW IT WASNT GOOD, BUT THANK GOODNESS MR. GARCIA WAS ABLE TO RECOUPERATE AND START A NEW.
SO THAT'S MY STORY AND I'M STICKIN TO IT.
THANKS SO MUCH FOR YOUR PATIENCE AND THANKS SO MUCH FOR A PLACE TO TELL MY TALE.