It was another very interesting night of Deadstein. There were several cool features of the night that made it one of the more memorable evenings of Deadstein. We had the whole band back together for the first time in a while. Then we also had the use of the new Jerry Garcia Song Book, version 8, for the first time as a normal part of the evening.
Lastly, I have to mention the presence of Howie Weiner. Howie is the person who wrote the new book Tangled Up In Tunes, which I just read and recommend highly to everyone, but in addition, he’s an old friend that I went to several Dead shows with. I know Howie because he was Doug Schmell’s friend growing up in his high school days while turning into a Jerry-head as explained in the book. I haven’t seen Howie probably since 1985 or so and due to the Facebook and the publicity associate with his book, we got to talking. He lives in the city what do you know? Ying-Yoink, next thing I know is Howie is at a Deadstein jam.
Alan came in with the notion of doing the Swing Auditorium Grateful Dead show from February 26, 1977 and it was funny how he suggested it and Howie kenw the Swing from the feb. 26 date. Nevertheless the jam’s date was actually February 22 and the Swing Auditorium show was February 26 and therefore, I had no real connection to doing that set list. This was probably to be disappointment of Alan and the detriment of the evening. Coming off of the jam that we just followed a set list, the February 17 show from last week, I wasn’t too anxious to do another set list for some reason. For the most part for the first set we let Howie pick the songs and he lead us through a typical normal sounding Grateful Dead set list that was cool, as if I was going selecting the songs myself, pretty funny I thought.
For the first set, we played well, we played hard, and we played with purpose getting us some good music. I thought our Cumberland Blues was one of our better efforts for that song.
Howie stayed for the first set and left after the Playing –> Let It Grow –> Playing, which ended the first set. It was great to see Howie and I’m sure we will see him soon.
We took a half time break at that point. It was a pretty long one which obviously was a mistake. It led to a second set that was played with a lot less zeal then the first. Scott was zoning and was in no mood to do anything too long and spacey which at that point would definitely knock him off his throne. Therefore we found our way into doing many a Beatles song. Scott requested the Abbey Road medley and somehow we did it. I mean we had a stumble or two but nothing that a nice Rich Brotman cut and paste couldn’t resolve. It was a good, fun effort on our part.
Besides the new book, which is exciting and you hear me blogging about it quite a bit at this point, I also was very excited to unveil the new Deadstein.com website to everyone at the jam. Deadstein.com has been down for probably two or three years now ever since I kind of crashed the server. I finally got it resolved not too long ago and over the weekend made the effort to get the website back up and running. In essence I resurrected it from its death and I’m looking forward to having a little fun with it at this point. I’m sure Kevin’s going to be liking it. I’m probably going to post its own blog post related to the resurgence of Deadstein.com so look for that somewhere later on but it’s a nice portal through all or Deadstein social networks for whatever that means to anyone, which probably isn’t much, but it’s gonna be fun anyway to look back on the past into using Deadsteam.com as a conduit back to the past as well to helping us play during our jams.
In closing on this jam, I have to mention the other guest, Scott Bayer with his bongos. He was about to start playing on doing the Abbey Road medley and I definitely had to call him on it and tell him to not play during it. The Don’t Let Me Down that we tried was pretty disastrous, amazing like that song has to be so difficult and much of the second set was not our best effort. As so often is the case.
You’ll be able to listen to the songs on MP3 once Rich posts them, so look forward to that. I’ll get them up there as soon as I can. Please take a look at the new website and start interacting on one of the multitude of social networks that I am giving us all access to. I especially have some hope with respect to using Google+ with its hangout features where we can actually potentially go over songs vis-à-vis video conference call and get some practice done at home what he think about guys?
Well, until next week, Freak out!