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After Midnight - Pure Jerry

Garcia Grisman

All Good Things

Keystone Vol. 1 After Midnight Garcia Grisman All Good Things

Finders Keepers:
Picks and Pans from a Garcia Collector

Thought on some of Jerry Garcia's side-bands. 

Best of the rest, by year/era ...

1973: 5/23/73

1974: no can do, it's all too good: the rest of August, 7/3 (unique and funky), 6/4-6, October stuff (6th is an amazing half-hour of music!), 12/29/74b are all pretty wonderful. Weakest of the year IMO are the January-February shows and the November east coast tour.

1975, LOM: April east coast stuff is overrated. Rest is great, especially 6/3-4 and 6/21-22!

1975, Hopkins era: parabolic function, weakest early (getting warmed up) and late (Nicky is drunk). Best shows IMO are late October and early November, especially anything with Let's Spend the Night Together > Edward!!

1976, James Booker "era": every last note.

1976-1978, Godchaux era.
*1976-- Mmmm ... tough. January-February are reeeaaaaaalllllly sllllooooooooowwwwwwwww. April has one of the all-time great performances in 4/3/76b, with 4/1/76 not far behind. Rest of the year is hit-or-miss IMO, but check out the guest pedal steel player on 12/21-22.

*1977-- hit or miss, IMO. November-December east coast stuff strongest, IMO.

*1978-- wonderful year. March stuff is great. 6/18/78 is nothing short of spectacular, with one of JG's finest performances ever in Let Me Roll It. October is great, but especially check out 11/3/78! Amazing show.

1979, Reconstruction: I love this stuff, most people like it less than I do. Much that is great here, better in June-July-August than earlier or later. Special mentions for 7/22/79, funkified craziness, and 8/10/79's Sama Layuca > Dear Prudence, with a couple minutes of the most beautiful Garcia guitar work this side of 2/18/71's Beautiful Jam.

1979-1980: Ozzie Ahlers era: Much wonderful stuff here. 3/8/80 is king of the heap, but just about everything is stellar. July east coast mini-tour especially noteworthy, after the killer month of February, one of Garcia's finest months of playing (after 8/74 and just before 2/81, IMO).

1980s electric: ... hit or miss. 6/16/82 is famous and very great. Don't miss 5/31/83 and 6/1/83. My favorite electric shows through the rest of the 80s are probably 2/6/88, 7/10/88, 11/26/88, 5/19/89, 8/26/89, 10/31/89. Honorable mentions to 10/4/86 (first post-coma show, and good in addition to being emotional), 8/29/87, and most everything else in 1988-1990.

1980s acoustic: ... hit or miss, generally solid. 6/3/84 is pretty great, nice Bird Song. November '84 east coast is, IMO, the poorest and most embarrassing public display that Garcia ever put on. The Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band (JGAB) shows from '87-'88 are enjoyable.

1990s electric: I dunno. I think 1990 is waaayyyy overrated. Garcia sounds like crap, IMO, for most of the year, including the much-loved June shows.

1990s acoustic: (Garcia/Grisman): every damn note of it, but especially the December '91 shows, really wonderful. Even the '94 shows (5/4-5) are wonderful, Garcia sounding very old and fragile, which suits the music just fine.

Just a few off-the-cuff thoughts, happy listening.
Joe JupilleŠ

(Caveat: I don't know post-1990 JGB very well at all, have only recently started digging into it.)

Pure Jerry - The live vault archival series of Jerry Garcia
The photo is used by permission.
Pure Jerry - The live vault archival series of Jerry Garcia
 Jerry Garcia - Photo credit: Jonathan Hyams
Pure Jerry promtional pictures - Jerry Garcia
Pure Jerry - The live vault archival series of Jerry Garcia


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