Deadheads had a lot to be grateful for this year.
Throughout 2022, the music never stopped in the land of the Grateful Dead. Through both archival releases and new recordings, the band and their extended musical family continued their long, bizarre journey through the sonic universe.
It’s been nearly 30 years since the last performance of the Grateful Dead. But pesky factors like linear time and geography of the Earth are less important in these parts.
“GarciaLive” Volumes 18 and 19
Singer and guitarist Jerry Garcia’s musical extracurricular activities are documented in the “GarciaLive” series of archival releases that marvelously embody the musical legacy of Garcia, who died in 1995.
This year, Round Records and the “GarciaLive” team dropped two doozies that act as perfect counterpoints to each other.
GarciaLive Volume 18: November 2nd, 1974 Keystone Berkeley, released in June, sees Garcia and keyboardist Merle Sanders explore a powerful musical space across two previously uncirculated sets. It turns out that
In this collection, Garcia finds his most adventurous side, the side of his playing that Sanders was uniquely able to conjure. These are, quite frankly, some of the most dangerous jams you’re likely to hear all year long.
There are offerings such as Donny Hathaway’s “Valdes in the Country” journey, a grandiose showcasing saxophonist and flutist Martin Fierro (later a member of the Legion of Mary alongside Garcia and Sanders). There’s a jazz-infused 17-minute jam on. Similarly, Eddie Harris’ “Freedom Jazz Dance” is an all-hands-on-deck funk/jazz wonder.
But Garcia knows never to stray too far. Terra Firma, always take things home. “Valdez” lands on a rough-rolling path to Garcia Chestnut’s “The Harder They Come,” penned by Jimmy Cliff, and “Freedom” is a previously released Bob Dylan deep cut. It replaces the frenzied rendering of “Tough Mama.” on “Planet Waves” that year.
Eighteen years later, a million miles away, “GarciaLive Volume 19: October 31, 1992 Oakland Coliseum Arena” was released in October. In contrast to the extreme work found on Volume 18, this album sees the Jerry Garcia Band in pure crowd-pleasing mode.
Recalling the early days of the Grateful Dead, where he entertained bar crowds all night as a dance band, Garcia gleefully plays his hits here. His “deal” is brilliant and hilarious, the show’s opening rendition of Holland Dozier Holland’s “How Sweet It Is” is bright and welcoming, Warren Zevon This is the closing cover of “The Werewolf of London”. It sounds like Jerry is having a blast on Halloween.
This album shines most in its quietest moments. Peter Tosh’s “Stop That Train” tenderly sets the stage for a deep and powerful reading of Daniel Lanois’ spiritual masterpiece “The Maker,” conveying it with harmless clarity and candor.
Bobby Weir & The Wolf Brothers “Live In Colorado”
If two Jerry Garcia releases in 2022 show just how deep the waters are beyond the Dead Stream, Bobby Weir still has fascinating depths to explore in the most familiar waters. showed what was left.
Weir recently started his career with the help of pedal steel player Greg Rice and the horn section of The Wolfpack, backed by the Wolf Brothers backing combo of bassist Don Was, drummer Jay Lane and pianist Jeff Chimenti. made some of the best music in. Alex Kelly, Brian Switzer, Adam Theis, Mats Tolling, Sheldon Brown.
Weir has partnered with Jack White’s Third Man Records to release a two-volume series, “Live in Colorado,” in February and October at Morrison’s Red Rocks Amphitheater and Vail’s Gerald R. Recorded performance at the Ford Amphitheater.
Beyond the campfire ballad “Only a River,” Weir’s 2016 solo album “Blue Mountain,” and Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On?” In the midst of “Eyes of the World,” “Live in Colorado” is drawn entirely from the Grateful Dead’s proven catalog of originals and covers. But it’s the playing that makes this such a remarkable document.
These songs heard here correspond to forest trails whose existence is desired by decades of dedicated footsteps. It’s alive and raw, mature and wild. Whether it’s the sometimes more uplifting “Looks Like Rain” or the relentless horn-burping of “The Other One,” it could very well be the sound Weir has been chasing all his life.
Grateful Dead, In and Out of the Garden: Madison Square Garden, ’81, ’82, ’83
The Dead may have been synonymous with the West Coast, but their involvement on our side of the country always brought something special out of them, especially when they took the stage at The Garden.
Manhattan’s Madison Square Garden hosted the band 52 times between 1979 and 1994. The band and venue left a huge impression on each other and in 2015 the Dead were inducted into the Garden Hall of Fame.
“Out of the nearly 2,300 shows that the Grateful Dead have played, the 52 we’ve played here have been amazing,” drummer Bill Kreutzman said at the inauguration.
“The audience demanded that we be in the game,” Weir told the Asbury Park Press after the introduction. We had to figure it out.”
That shared history was celebrated in “In and Out of the Garden: Madison Square Garden ’81, ’82, ’83.”
A 17-disc box set collecting six previously unreleased MSG shows from March 9 and 10, 1981, September 20 and 21, 1982, and October 11 and 12, 1983, was released to Rhino in September. Released from
The March 9, 1981 show, which is also available as a standalone release, offers a glimpse into a transitional period in the band’s career.
The playing is solid overall, but the X Factor is keyboardist and singer Brent Mydland, who was still finding a footing in the band less than two years ago.
The collaboration is still expanded enough to meet your needs, but the playing is sharper than it has been in the last decade.
After a double shot of the 1980s original “Feel Like a Stanger” and the smoky opening of “Althea,” the band heads into familiar territory, but baring its teeth.
“Bird Song” tiptoes across the high wire for over 11 minutes, while “Ramble on Rose” and “El Paso” sound like they’re being played by a honky-tonk on Mars.
A gold star moment arrives with the profound social frustration ballad “Ship of Fools”, first released in June 1974 on the band’s From the Mars Hotel LP. Midland’s keyboard glints juxtaposed with Garcia’s plaintive vocals and guitar work bring a fragile sheen to this Reagan-era retelling of classics from the last days of the Nixon administration.
‘In the Groove’ by Planet Drum and ‘Persistence of Memory’ by Dawes Hermanos
From here to space travel.
Longtime Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart reunites with boundary-pushing international supergroup Planet Drums, while the Grammy-winning ensemble releases its first album in 15 years, In the Groove, in August. Released.
Featuring Hart and Zakir Hussain, Sikhil Adepoju and Giovanni Hidalgo, Planet Drums is an all-around great vibe, a hypnotic and thrilling experience.
Elsewhere, two former members of the Dead organization also pioneered experimental grounds. Pianist Tom Constanten, who toured as a member of The Dead from 1968 to 1970, and Bob, the band’s tech guru, engineer, programmer and sporadic stage performer from 1987 to 1995. Bralab is back in the pairing of Dawes Hermanos. “Persistence of memory”.
Constanten and Bralab’s interplay veers from sublime like “Bubbles,” an enveloping pool of acoustic piano and electronic textures, to darker, like “Garden of Delights,” epic, menacing and bewitching. There is likely to be. Mind.
If you find yourself missing the inventive joys of the Dead’s traditional “drums” and “space” experimental improvisations, these two releases should have you covered.
The band celebrated the 50th anniversary of their landmark 1972 tour of Western Europe with the Lyceum 1972: The Complete Recordings collection of 24 LPs, featuring the final four shows of the tour in London, and The remastered version of Europe ’72 has been released. CD, LP, Streaming, Digital Albums and 4 CD Set “Lyceum Theater: May 26, 1972”.
The tour’s April 7 and 8, 1972 shows were released as a Record Store Day offering, featuring the Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band’s 1987 recording “Ragged But Right”, originally released in 2010, and the 2006 Jerry Garcia Band album Pure Jerry: Coliseum, November 9, 1991, Hampton, Virginia.
Dead and Company — the Grateful Dead legacy act featuring Weir, Hart and Kreutzmann — are back on tour this summer for a series of often-spell-blindfolded shows, now available to stream via Nugs . Here are 13 of the tour’s best performances.
Alex Biese has been writing about arts, entertainment, culture and news on a local and national level for over 15 years. Alex can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter at:@ABieseAPP.