8 - The
Jerry Garcia vault series
long delay, the Jerry Garcia archive releases are set for
The vault is open! They are available through Dead.net, in conjunction with
the Garcia Family LLC.
resumption of the Garcia archives commences with the continuation of the Pure
Jerry Series delivering the first acoustic
Jerry Garcia John Kahn release; a
concert from Marin Veterans Memorial Auditorium in San
Rafael, CA from 2/28/86.
In addition to 1986, the Garcia and Kahn line-up also had a number of shows in
1982, 1984, and 1985, as well as an occasional concert here and there. There
is a solo acoustic Jerry performance from 4/10/82, the just Jerry
show. I read after that evenings early and late performance, Jerry called Kahn to perform with
him for the rest of the tour.
I happen to like the just Jerry recording.
Veterans Memorial Auditorium includes both
complete sets on one disc. The material is comprised of originals,
traditional blues and folk tunes, and a Dylan song. All of this
material Jerry would play with different bands, some with the
Grateful Dead, both electric and acoustic, some with his solo
bands; while the traditional material would appear later with The
Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band, and with Garcia
begins with a few old-time traditional songs. Starting with a
familiar song to the audience is "Deep Elem Blues," as the
Grateful Dead included it in both their 1970 and 1980 acoustic
sets as well as an extremely rare electric version. A good choice to
set the mood nicely showcasing Jerry strumming, picking melodic riffs,
firing off melodic solos, while singing from heart, this sets
the mood nicely for the evenings festivities.
song, "When I Paint My Masterpiece" is a fun one. Jerry
really enjoys himself as it's obvious from his voice inflections. As an aside, The Grateful Dead
broke this song out in 1987 as a regular song in their concert
rotation with Bob
Weir singing it. Though, 1980 versions of the Jerry Garcia Band
performing this with Jerry singing are worth seeking out. Correction, they are mandatory. The Garcia
Plays Dylan disc offers a version that is available, and the
bonus disc (early
After Midnight (one of my
favorite releases), has a version. The
acoustic take of "Run For the Roses" closes the set in an
second set opens with "Dire Wolf"; a
good way to begin. A traditional type folk song, but this one a an
original written in that style. The show highlight is arguably a lengthy
jam during "Bird Song." This acoustically performed
version is certainly a classic. Bringing the house down is the gently sung "Ripple"
from the Grateful Dead's 1970 album American
loved rare classic. The sendoff, "Goodnight Irene" offers some
nice Jerry style blues runs, taking two solos.
man band line-up gives the listener a different feel of Jerry's guitar
playing than in any other setting or personnel line-up with only the
acoustic bass performing with him. Therefore, you can hear his
rhythmic patterns, and guitar riffs differently. It certain makes
for a very, very good listen. I will add that I spun a soundboard of a show from the tour awaiting this release. The
clarity of Marin Veterans Memorial Auditorium is much better so the sonic upgrade is noticeable
Veterans Memorial Auditorium is a blend of
original and cover versions. I've heard all of these songs in different settings by
Grateful Dead and/or one of Jerry Garcia's side bands. These
renditions are quite enjoyable. The flow of mixing the traditional
material next to the Garcia Hunter originals show how their writing
style is perfectly in tune with the traditional American music.
Hearing them side by side gives the listener true appreciation of
this. How nice do "FOTD," "Dire Wolf," and
"Ripple" blend in as if they were written generations prior?
While songs like "Bird Song," "Run For the
Roses," and the Dylan number "When I Paint My Masterpiece"
fit into the set so complementary. Jerry fans that find the Jerry
Garcia Acoustic Band too traditional for their tastes will find this easier to
swallow. While those that enjoy that band, myself included, will also
find much to like on this. While musically the Jerry Garcia Acoustic
Band is tighter, this one will appeal to a wider audience.
Grade B +