Friday, July 31, 2009

Levon Helm heads back to Tennessee Jed on Letterman

I was totally psyched to see Levon Helm play Tenn Jed on the David Letterman show the other night. It was well done - very Jerry Garcia and Levon Helms all in one. I was also happy to see Larry Campbell on stage playing lead guitar with his slide (Campbell played lead guitar for Bob Dylan and Phil Lesh & Friends). Even after all this time, musicians like Levon Helm are still paying tribute to Garcia (I could not help, but see the connections to the recent 36 year anniversary of Watkins Glen, NY - 7/28/73 - show when The Band and The Dead played together and Helms playing Tenn Jed on the David Letterman show). Check out the video by clicking on > Tenn Jed by Levon Helm.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Watkins Glen, NY

On July 28, 1973, The Grateful Dead, The Band & The Allman Brothers played at Watkins Glen, NY. It is considered the largest concert in rock history. There were over 750,000 in attendance (some say 600,000, but, whatever, it was bigger than Woodstock). I suspect that people who missed Woodstock in '69 made sure they did not miss this show.

The soundcheck from the night before is considered one of the best rock music events of all time. I can't tell you how many people tell me they attended the soundcheck (though I do not believe all of them who make this claim. I think it is kinda of a poser line used to legitimize their Dead credentials). Anyway, many, many people arrived early for the show and were sitting up front when Robbie Robertson & The Band decided to do a soundcheck. The Allman Brothers did their soundcheck next. But, it was the Grateful Dead's soundcheck that made it even more special. The Dead played for over 2 hours performing some of their most epic and unique material.

The next day - the day of The Summer Jam at Watkins Glen - The Grateful Dead played first and did a typical 2 set show, followed by 2 exceptional encores accompanied by The Allman Bros and The Band. I could go on and on about this show, but you'll have to wait for the actual Stream this week. Yes, we are going to be featuring this famous show this week on Shakedown Stream. I will also play some of the best nuggets from the Dead's soundcheck from the night before. Join me this week - jump in the stream and let the good times roll!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Why Do I Do That? Because ...

Listeners have asked me to provide more information on the songs I play on the stream. Dates, location, venue - all the stuff the aficionado DeadHeads crave - every detail of a song or show. They are all good questions and certainly understandable ones. Many want to know why I wait to reveal the details of the songs I play until after they are over.

The answer to this question - when I was first beginning Shakedown Stream, some kind listeners asked if I would wait, play the song first, and then provide the name, date, venue and location of the song. Their reasoning was that they wanted to experience the song(s) for the first time as if they were at a show and have that anticipation and wonderment. How could I refuse such a request? It made sense to me and it still does.

So if you were wondering why I do that - that is why, because ...

Friday, July 17, 2009

Legal Grateful Dead Sample

Animal Collective Clear the First Legal Grateful Dead Sample

A while ago Prefix posted a bootleg of the very excellent unreleased "Animal Collective" track"What Would I Want Sky," and it turns out now that Animal Collective have cleared the first legal Grateful Dead sample for use in that track. The Grateful Dead track is "Unbroken Chain,"and the fact that they bothered to properly license it implies that the group plans on releasing the song sometime in the future.

Dave "Avey Tare" Portner told the Onion's A.V. Club that they might put it on a a "Brother Sport" EP, towards the end of the year, which means that "What Would I Want Sky isn't the only new AC fans would get. Neat, right?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Let It Grow

"As well to count the angels dancin' on a pin" is one of my favorite lines in a Grateful Dead song. It comes from the song Let It Grow - the third and last part of the entire song Weather Report Suite - released on "Wake of the Flood" - 1973. David Dodd (author of The Annotated Grateful Dead) has proven himself to be a literary scholar of Grateful Lyrics by researching the literal and historical references of lines from Grateful Songs. Below is an example of what I am talking about:

From the article "Angel/Angelogy", by E. Ann Matter, in the Dictionary of the Middle Ages. "Aquinas devoted fourteen books of the Summa Theologiae to the nature and powers of angels. he held that angels have form but not matter, and are therefore eternal and incorruptible. Angels are able to assume bodies; these bodies can take up space, so only one angel can be in a particular place at a certain time. In contrast, Duns Scotus asserted that angels consist of both form and a noncorporeal matter particular to them alone, which makes it possible for more than one angel to occupy the same place at the same time (De Anima, XV: De rerum principio, VII-VIII). The ensuing debates over these positions may have given rise to the early modern legend that the Scholastics argued over such questions as how many angels can dance on the head of a pin."

The feature show for this week's Shakedown Stream contained a Let It Grow coming out of Terrapin Station in the 2nd set that is amazing (one of the best I have heard). The boys jam the tune for well over 20 minutes before going into drumz.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The People Have Spoken

This is cool. We had a little vote - a little Dead democracy - and people decided upon the 9/2/79 show from Augusta, Maine to be the feature show for Shakedown Stream this week. The show won by 1 vote and 48 people participated.
9/2/79 - Augusta, ME
17 (35%)
3/30/80 - Passaic, NJ
16 (33%)
10/21/88 - Dallas, TX
10 (20%
12/4/90 - Oakland, CA
5 (10%)

I think we will do more of this kinda thing - democratically choosing Dead shows. Also, this week on Shakedown Stream, I will play Part 2 of the Mark Karan interview (the lead guitar player for Bob Weir's RatDog) along with material from The Dead's Spring '09 tour.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Hurry Up !! - Last Day to Vote Dead

Only one more day to vote. For the last two weeks, there has been a poll being conducted on the new Shakedown Stream blog page. There are four Grateful Dead shows to choose from: 1979 - Augusta, Maine, 1980 - Passaic, New Jersey, 1988 - Dallas, Texas and 1990 - Oakland, California. (Look to the right >>) Whatever show gets the most votes will be the feature show for next week. All of them are good and I would be happy to feature any one of them. There is one day left to VOTE !! >>> VOTE >>>> VOTE >>> VOTE >>> ....

Tell your friends to vote or log on to another computer and vote or something, but just hurry up and vote.

Jer Bear

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Shakedown Stream - July 7, 2009

We are all set and ready to stream. The premiere of this week's podcast - starting at 5pm on - will have something for everyone. In the 1st hour,we will hear some classic Grateful Dead chestnuts and a tune from The Dead's '09 spring tour. However, I am most pleased to be airing Part 1- an interview with Mark Karan along with a couple of the songs from his new CD "Walking Through the Fire." We'll also hear some RatDog - who started their summer tour on July 5th - and The Bear Essentials will celebrate the birthday of Joan Osborne - July 8th.

The feature show this week: 40 years ago on July 7th, 1969, the Grateful Dead played a free afternoon concert in Piedmont Park, Atlanta, Georgia (Someone following me on Twitter suggested I play a '69 show). And because the feature is a shorter show than most of our feature shows, we will have a lot of extra time for some sweet stuff afterwards - like Jerry Garcia from 1979 with a horn section as well as something for the Buck Moon of July. You won't want to miss it - we have not featured a '69 show in awhile. It is time for some primal Dead.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Dead @ The Rothbury

The Dead
Rothbury, MI
Rothbury Festival

Set 1:
Sugar Magnolia >
Eyes of the World >
Estimated Prophet
Loose Lucy
Into the Mystic
Help on the Way >
SlipKnot >
Franklin's Tower

Set 2:
Saturday Night
Shakedown Street
China Cat Sunflower >
I Know You Rider
Rhythm Devils>
Viola Lee Blues
Morning Dew
Throwing Stones
Sunshine DayDream

US Blues (with Fireworks)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Jer Bear Reaches Outer Mongolia

To: <>
Subject: Hello from Mongolia
Date: Thu, 2 Jul 2009

Hi Jer Bear,

I'm a fairly new listener to the podcast and love seeing the little blue dot next to the
Shakedown Stream podcast on my itunes letting me know there's a new one. I'm a little behind and was just listening to the Lake Placid show you featured last month, was a great, kick-ass show. On that and subsequent podcasts I heard you mention you have listeners in the UK, Ireland and on the continent and all I could think was "I got that beat by a mile (or 10,000)."

I am fairly certain I am the one and only listener in Mongolia (what you may know as Outer Mongolia, now just plain ol' Mongolia). I first came here in 2001 as a Peace Corps volunteer, left and ended up returning to work here.I really dig your podcast because it helps keep me sane on the walks to/from work, especially in the -30C winters.

For the longest time my only exposure to the Dead was through
"Without a Net." I had aways enjoyed it but never got around to picking up any more recordings. Then I stumbled across your podcast a few months ago and the rest has been listening history. I have a lot of catching up to do after downloading all of your past shows from the mvy website and I am really looking forward to it. Could you play for me a nice China Rider (although Mongolia is not a part of China, it's at least in the neighborhood)? It would be appreciated.

So keep up the good work and thanks for the podcast.


Coming Coming Coming Coming ARouNd

It seems like a good a time as any to bring this Blog page back around. So here it goes, after a hiatus from maintaining this Shakedown ...