Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Santa Clara, CA - June 28, 2015

I write Sunday night's review from 30,000 miles up in the air en route back to Boston from San Francisco. I am still tired, but my memory of the Santa Clara show is very much intact. It was Bobby's night, for sure. As Chris from Mill Valley said, "Bob came down from the mountaintop like the sound of thunder from Indra's lightning bolt." The omnipresent Shakti was evidenced by the opener "Feel Like A Stranger" followed by "Minglewood Blues" (one of the oldest tunes in the repertoire dating back to Mother McGree's Uptown Jug Champions). It was Bobby alright. 

I think the 1st set was a classic format that we know from so many of our bootlegs. I was hoping for a Hornsby "Loser"  and got it, then Trey rocked "Alabama Getaway". This set was longer than Saturday night. It could of ended there, but no, it kept going with an unusual first set rendition of "Black Peter" and a tight "Hell in a Bucket" closer. Phew, it was clear at intermission that they brought their A game and were responding to the lukewarm reviews from the Bay area papers. It was now or never; dew or die and Bobby was stepping up. Unbroken Jane said "The first set was why I became a Deadhead over 30 years ago."

The second set was even more special. The "Mississippi Half Step" 2nd set opener was crisp and sharp. It was serious Dead business and Phil was singing much better tonight. And when I felt the slightest vibration of Eyes my heart quivered  like I was 15. Thank you, thank you, thank you. 

Lastly, the Sugar Magnolia was blistering - one for the ages - with yellow sunshine exploding to multiple crescendos with Bobby firmly at the wheel. And as Nancy from San Fran said of the Brokedown encore, she had tears in her eyes remembering all the years combined of all the sweet memories of shows and friends. Whatta Birthday treat thanks Babe. Now onto to Chicago. 
Set One
Feel Like a Stranger
Minglewood Blues
Brown Eyes Women
Loose Lucy
Loser
Row Jimmy Row
Alabama Getaway
Black Peter
Hell in a Bucket

Set Two
Mississippi Half Step >
Wharf Rat >
jam>
Eyes of the World >
He's Gone >
drumz >
I Need a Miracle >
Death Have No Mercy >
SUGAR MAGNOLIA !!
encore: Brokedown Palace

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Santa Clara, CA - 6/27/15

Here's a set list from Saturday night followed a brief assessment. 
Set 1
noodle jam >
Truckin' 
Uncle John's Band
Alligator >
jam>
Cumberland Blues
Born Cross Eyes >
Cream Puff War
Viola Lee Blues (Double Rainbow!)
Set 2
Cryptical Envelopment >
Dark Star >
St. Stephen >
sweet jam >
William Tell >
The Eleven >
Turn on Your Lovelite >
drumz >
What's Become of the Baby >
The Other One >
Morning Dew
encore: Casey Jones

The first two songs, Truckin' and Uncle Johns Band, were straight up performances -- nothing too special, but competent. Personally, I thought the rest of the first set was kinda off and they didn't seem  to be in synch with each other. However, an amazing thing happened during Viola Lee Blues; a rainbow started growing and by the time Viola ended a full double rainbow was shining above us. I thought it was an auspicious sign, maybe Jerry was joining us. It was a good sign because it seemed they ended the set early to regroup. 

The second set started with an easy flowing mellow Cryptical that lead effortlessly into Dark Star. The sound and vocals were not too sharp - maybe they needed to play it simple for a bit to get the groove going. Meanwhile, I was zooming around the venue checking out the folks, maneuvering into different nooks around the stadium, and trying to connect to the venue vibe. Then it happened: BOOM > St Stephen.  The band came alive, my happy feet sprang to life and my old Deadhead dancing woke up. There was sweet, beautiful, creative jam after St. Stephen that I loved and the Lovelight after The Eleven made me smiley. Bobby always had a way of centering me to the sound. Hey, for heaven's sake, he and Jerry are the guys that lead us through all those shows through all those years. It was also cool to see Mickey on the beam again during the drums. Not sure about the "What's Become of the Baby" (why not a Mountains of the Moon, Phil?) out of drums.  The Other One   and Morning Dew were stupendously righteous (I prefer a Morning Dew over Wharf Rat post-drums/space). The Casey Jones encore sung by Hornsby made me think of the trains I have been hearing all over the East Bay this week. We were gratefully blessed by a searingly beautiful sunset and the double rainbow. All the songs themed from the early time period of the Grateful Dead's repertoire
with nothing being played from after 1970. I suspect tonight will be songs from early 1970. The table is set for a second course tonight. 




Friday, June 26, 2015

Major League DeadHeads

Our nonstop flight from Boston to San Francisco landed late Wednesday night. We got right into the swing of things Thursday at the Giants/Padres day game. As a devoted Red Sox fan from New England, I felt somewhat unsure about my presence there. However, the weather was sunny and beautiful and I was with my best friend from way way back from the Tipi days so it was cool just to be there. The Giants were dominating the game 9 to 1 around the 7th inning. So we decided to walk around the stadium to check out the views of the city. Quickly, the Padres started hitting and scoring. We knew instinctually as superstitious Red Sox fans that we needed to return to our seats ASAP to get the mojo back in alignment for the SF Giants. And wouldn't you know it, as soon as we sat down the Giants roared back and won the game 13 - 8. 

As Deadheads, we learned a few skills from going to all those shows: the fans are part of group mind consciousness that can affect the direction of the music and Thursday a few deadheads from New England played a major league role. HEY NOW - we are just getting warmed up.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

The Grateful Dead from 1988

Join us this week on Shakedown Stream for live Grateful Dead from 1988.  We have been streaming through the Dead's 30 year odyssey year by year - week by week in lieu of their 50th anniversary celebration and reunion shows in Santa Clara and Chicago. We are up to 1988. A very good year; Jerry is healthy, new songs, 80 shows, Dead dew Dylan, and the parking scene is getting bigger and BIGGER. 

New songs from 1988 
Blow Away 
Foolish Heart 
Believe It Or Not 
I Will Take You Home 

Click on mvyradio.com this Tuesday and wake up to find out the featured '88 show that will be streaming through your earbuds and the current.