Grateful Dead Go FURTHUR At The Greek

I’ve been listening here and there to this current incarnation of the Grateful Dead legacy; bits and pieces as they appear on and other sites. While I am already a fan of their newest lead guitarist John Kadlecik (of Dark Star Orchestra fame), I have found what I’d heard so far to be “interesting,” even quite good at times, but never great. Over the last few years I’ve become a shameless Dark Star Orchestra fan. In large part because that band feels more like the Grateful Dead experience to me than the Grateful Dead themselves did in their last 10 or so years. With a few exceptions, the Dead lost their ability to play tightly as they wound down into their third and final act. Perhaps it was lack of rehearsals, or maybe Jerry’s heroin problem, or perhaps a lack of interest or pure exhaustion, I don’t know. What I do know is they were no longer the band I fell in love with. I still went to see them, and I always yearned for more, but I was also fighting a mounting disappointment that they had become rather sloppy.

In listening to Furthur online, I got the sense that this band was tighter than the Grateful Dead had been toward the end, but still not as tight as, say, Dark Star Orchestra. But last night’s show at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles turned me around. I can’t tell you how this show will translate to tape, but I can tell you that being there was a very different experience from any recording I’ve heard to date. What I witnessed was a very tight band. And a very advanced one. Perhaps they’ve returned to the stage after a short break with a newfound enthusiasm, well-rehearsed and ready to move things another notch up the musical ladder. It certainly seems so.

For the record, this is not the Grateful Dead. Most of the songs may be, but the approach is different. This band is even more jazz-influenced than the Dead were at their “jazziest.” With rhythm guitarist Bob Weir (not just bearded, but bespectacled now as well) and bass player Phil Lesh the only Grateful Dead members in attendance, Furthur truly is a unique animal less concerned with recreating the Grateful Dead experience and seemingly more concerned with exploring new sounds and new directions to take the music. And if last night’s show is any indication, they are succeeding masterfully.

No longer bound by the structure of the Grateful Dead’s set lists (which, though improvised and ever-changing, nonetheless became a bit predictable), Furthur has thrown the rule book out. Any song, from any era can (and will) be played anywhere in any set at any time. This, for Dead Heads, is pure nirvana. Everything is possible.

Added to this lineup is keyboardist Jeff Chimenti who is easily my favorite “Dead” pianist since Keith. Jazzy and daring, Chimenti never tries to overpower the band, but flows energetically as he weaves in and out of the spaces between the other instruments, stepping forward front and center only when an opening permits. And when he does, watch out! The music is about to reach new heights! I’m one of the few who was never a huge fan of Brent Mydland (I know, I know, sacrilege…). I felt his playing, as supremely talented as it was, overpowered the rest of the band and made it that much easier for them to ease into sloppy musicianship as Brent’s keyboards would usually cover any such “mistakes.” Even MORNING DEW would climax prematurely due to Brent’s overuse of organ and his extreme volume in any given mix. Perhaps in Brent’s defense, he was just covering up the gaps left by a band that had lost some of its drive. But either way, Chimenti never traverses that same path and I could not have enjoyed his participation more. I hung on every note with delight.

Drummer Joe Russo is less a replacement for the Kreutzmann/Hart duo (the other surviving Grateful Dead members not included in this lineup), but more reminiscent of those years when Billy Kreutzmann was the band’s sole drummer. Like Billy, Joe does more than just hold the band together, he cuts a clear path so that they may dance unrestrained, their individual sonic personalities skipping with complete abandon through open spaces to come together with all the love and affection of a family reunited. Just listen to his uninhibited and self-assured intro to the show opener, ALLIGATOR.

Following ALLIGATOR, the remainder of the first set at L.A.’s Greek was completely engaging. Filled with songs the Grateful Dead stopped playing in the 60’s, as well as a brand new song and some old favorites, the band wove a pleasant tapestry that was, as it would turn out, just a small taste of what was to come. By time the set ended with MASON’S CHILDREN, I felt the band was just getting up to speed, even though they’d already taken us on some sublime spiraling musical excursions.

The second set hit the ground running with a welcome trip back to the 60’s once again with a pair of songs I’d always longed to hear live, BORN CROSS-EYED and NEW POTATO CABOOSE. I was in heaven right from the get-go and the set list just kept getting better and better. The complexities and nuances of this new incarnation came clearly into focus. For the first time, I was able to let go of what I expected them to be and was able to embrace who this band had become, who they were now.

UNBROKEN CHAIN was a second set highlight, less because of the beauty of the song and its once mythic status, but because, in the hands of this new band, it had become an epic musical journey in ways I’d never imagined possible. This was only slightly overshadowed by what turned out to be one of the best live MORNING DEWs I’ve ever heard. I had to keep snapping myself back to reality and remind myself that I was seeing this live and not just listening to an old CD from the past.

And even though they could have ended the set with the DEW and no one would have been anything less than completely satisfied, the boys decided to treat us to a full-on, no-holds-barred PLAYING IN THE BAND before wrapping up the set.

Furthur is a band worth seeing. If you appreciate true musical exploration, if you love the music of the Grateful Dead (and I mean their full songbook, not just the “hits”), then this incarnation is a must-see. And while it’s still true that Bobby and Phil are not the best vocalists to be found, reinforcements have been brought in in the form of backup singers Sunshine Becker and Jeff Pehrson. And Kadlecik is no slouch himself with a somewhat rough-around-the-edges Garcia-like lilt to his voice. And it should be noted that Phil appears to have taken some more singing lessons or is simply pushing himself farther than he’s gone before as he, truthfully, has never sounded better. Rearranging his vocal approach to many of the songs, I was hard-pressed to find those wince-worthy, off-key notes Phil has been known to hit on more than one occasion. In fact, there was a downright beauty to his approach this night and I hope he continues to challenge himself in this manner as the results are already enormous. The splendor of these songs came through in a way they had not for many, many years.

On a less enthusiastic note, the audience in attendance at the Greek was a mixed bag. I don’t know if it’s just the L.A. crowd or if this is a staple of the concert experience everywhere, but I was amazed –nay, shocked— by the sheer number of people who seemed more focused on engaging in full-on, top-of-lung conversation than in listening to the music. On more than one occasion, I found myself aurally competing to stay focused on the band and not on the selfish verbiage that was spewing forth all around me by those who appeared less interested in music and far more interested in socializing and networking. It took some deep breaths (and the occasional dirty look and random friendly comment to the worst transgressors) before I was able to just let go and not let the less-attractive elements of my surroundings take away from all the wonderful happenings going on. Thankfully, the music grew louder as the show progressed and it became increasingly easier to smile and ignore those nearby who were clearly mislead into believing we had all bought our tickets to hear them lecture, commiserate and exchange business cards.

The other slight complaint I had was that I was never fully satisfied with the sound mix. This seems to be in keeping with my experience of the live recordings. Vocals are often soft and a bit muffled, and John Kadlecik’s lead guitar is almost always too low in the mix, rarely standing out above the other instruments. Whether this is by design or not, I couldn’t tell you. I’ve also felt, both at this show and the others I’ve listened to, that Kadlecik is holding back. After experiencing him in Dark Star Orchestra on numerous occasions, I know what he is capable of as a guitarist and, as good a job as he did last night, it was still restrained compared to Kadlecik’s full musical capabilities. Again, this may simply be the sound and style this particular band is after. But one senses that with slightly looser reigns, Kadlecik could help this band go even further (no pun intended). And if you can’t loosen the reigns a bit, at least turn him up! Luckily, by the show’s last third, the mix seemed to agree with me as Kadlecik (particularly during MORNING DEW) finally landed front and center in the mix. Oddly enough, up until that point, it wasn’t Bobby and Phil who dominated, but the drummer and keyboard player. So while I would have preferred a different balance in the mix, at the end of the day it wasn’t enough to take away from the experience in any dramatic fashion and, as said, it did improve by show’s end.

Soon I’ll listen to Furthur at the Greek in download format and see if the experience of the show I attended translates to the live recording medium. Will it sound as good to me then as it did in the moment? Or will they once again sound like that band I wish were just a little tighter, just a tad more polished? I’ll let you know. But for the moment, as I sip my morning coffee and reminisce about the night before, they are still powerful in my memory. And I can still feel them in my dancing feet.

Here’s the set list followed by a few video snippets I took (no full songs, I’m afraid. I was too busy dancing to commit that much time to recording. But it’s a taste…).

Set 1:
Good Lovin’
Muli Guli
China Cat Sunflower->
Ramble on Rose
Mason’s Children

Set 2:
Born Cross Eyed->
New Potato Caboose->
Cryptical Envelopment->
The Other One->
Unbroken Chain->
Let It Grow
Mountain Song->
Morning Dew
Playin’ in the Band
Box of Rain

Grateful Dead Go FURTHUR At The Greek

18 thoughts on “Grateful Dead Go FURTHUR At The Greek

  1. Leah aka RamblinRose says:

    Hal, thanks for the set list and a great review. My analysis is tainted by some questionable candy ingested before the show, which had me feeling, like the chopper riding skeleton whose teeth can’t stop chattering, pretty edgy. I agree that they were unbelievably tight. Tighter than I ever remember the Dead being (I go back to ’72), but one of the things I always loved about the Dead was how they would take their time, allow for some breathing spaces between the notes, for more spontaneity and risks that would even fail. These guys are almost too well rehearsed. I was missing some of that “what’s going to happen next?” magic. I did appreciate the tight vocals. They were delightfully in tune. And I think Phil sounded lovely. It was a treat to hear him step up so much, especially to hear Unbroken Chain and Box of Rain. What a great song to end with – brilliant. I also agree that Kadlecik was amazing on Morning Dew, close your eyes and he’s channeling Jerry. The sound was out of balance but since I love Phil I didn’t mind having his bass up, although I could have done with less piano as well. I apologize on behalf of my fellow LAliens for their bad behavior. It IS obnoxious, people, to talk during the entire concert. On the other hand, I saw some truly beautiful, loving behavior — people dancing together, singing together and hugging each other. Despite the talking (I experienced that too) the crowd was typically mellow and sweet. I loved the set list, it showed off the genius behind the Dead (Jerry’s legacy, in particular). They moved from blues to pop, to country, to ballad, to honky tonk, to jazz, to psychedelia, etc. without so much as a twitch. Impossible, you might declare. Not so much for these dudes (sorry if I seem to be contradicting myself). All in all I can’t wait to see/hear them again. Next time, I’ll be more careful what I consume. I want a smooth experience, not to feel like a cheese grater.

    Here’s to a lifetime of magical moments filled with great music, peace and love – Leah

  2. halmasonberg says:

    Thanks for the comments, Leah. I got on the Dead train around 1975 and never looked back. My personal favorite years were 72-78 (the Keith and Donna years). Just found them tight and smooth and vocally in sync and jazzy and open. There was a real freedom to the music back then. Once the 80’s hit, their sound started to change pretty dramatically, but it didn’t really start to collapse for me till about mid-85. I sort of like that this band, Furthur, is not the Dead. I like that they’re their own beast. It’s true that they are a bit more structured in their jamming, but that just feels more like jazz to me so I’m okay with it. At least the setlists are incredible and unexpected. And they are actually jamming longer than the Dead ever attempted in their last 10 years. ALLIGATOR-CAUTION to open the first set? Wow… And no slouch versions, either. But long, extended explorations right out of the gate. I was surprised and thrilled. And I’m a picky son-of-a-bitch!

    1. Leah aka RamblinRose says:

      Hal, I stopped seeing the Dead in the early 80s as I was too busy with family and work, so I didn’t witness first hand their decline. But, of course, their decline was no secret (it’s ironic that that’s when they became commercially viable). It’s not fair to compare Further too closely with the Dead. They are, as you say, “their own beast,” and that’s fine. But it’s hard not to want a return of some of the magic. As I said, I’m willing to concede that it was entirely a result of my somewhat less than stellar trip, and I’m really looking forward to hearing them again. I certainly can’t argue with the heavenly playlist and I agree that opening with Alligator-Caution was pretty amazing. By no stretch of the imagination am I declaring defeat. One more thing, I saw the Dead (not the Grateful Dead) at Inglewood last year and I thought they were fantastic, so there’s no question that I’ll be hanging in there.

      Btw, big Kubrick fans here. Thanks again for the great blog — Leah

      1. halmasonberg says:

        Thanks, Leah. Strange, but after years of fighting against it, DSO has become my GD experience. As much as I enjoyed Furthur, DSO still fills my Dead experience need more. Never thought in a million years I would be saying that, but it’s true. I look forward to each and every visit they make to town.

        Wish I liked Warren Haynes more. He was the reason I just couldn’t connect with that incarnation of the Dead. He just doesn’t “transport” me, as talented as he is.

  3. gawdpdx says:

    Excellent review. Since I wasn’t at the show, it gave me a good sense of how well that amazing setlist was played. I do have a couple of comments. I saw both Eugene Furthur shows. JK’s guitar came through the mix quite well at the shows. Love his playing. The first night we were up close on Phil’s side and his bass was loud and clear. It struck me that on at least a few tunes, he was playing lead, or at least it seemed that way to me. The other thing I want to say is that I want to thank the folks that were around us on both nights. Nobody yakked away during the show. Everybody was focused on the music and having a high time. Thank god for small favors.

  4. halmasonberg says:

    gawdpdx, glad to hear Kadlecik was turned up. I look forward to listening to those shows. Yeah, Phil came out with some amazing riffs that just soared! The mix sounds better on the matrix i downloaded from Vocals are still a little lower than I’d like, but the overall mix is better than what I heard from my seats in section B. Also glad to hear that the Eugene Heads aren’t as self-involved as some of the pseudo LA-Heads who love the sound of their own voices more than Lesh’s bass! The Greek show definitely translates to the recording. It truly was a special night.

  5. Mike says:

    Here are my thoughts written the following day. Similar to you in longevity of Dead following, and loved the ’72-78 years….And despite my disappointment, being at these affairs is never wrong.

    What happens when evolution ceases? Death? That’s where Furthur is now, for me. Following Phils 70th birthday show in March, I anticipated a musically diverse and experimental project following up on the road last night. Didn’t happen and IMO took steps back.

    First off, the Greek Theater is a fire trap that I can not believe in today’s age of public safety passes the sniff test. On top of that, the oversold show created discomfort for the disproportionately enthusiastic attendees, with no outlet to channel that energy. Indeed, the dynamic of ticket sales for this concert requires analysis more so than the production. Up to mid day of the show vast numbers of tickets were available, all undervalued. Many tickets were available except section A (1/4 of venue?) which was held by the band for internal sales. Yet just hours before kickoff, legitimate ticketseekers were desperate for any ticket to be found. Last minute deals due to the economy? Band buzz? All on a fall Tuesday.

    Traffic to get in at the start was the worst ever. We were at the gate to Griffith Park at 7:15 and in 20-30 minutes inched 50 yds. After getting out of the car and ascending the 10 minute hill I entered during China Cat, probably mid first set. Looking at my notes from the show, I now recall that I thought the song confused and lazy in comparison to powerful and synchronistic which is the song’s strength. John “noodled” with mediocre, uneven intensity and unfortunately, wandered seemingly without purpose. Flashes of the strong Jerry lead would build but the dynamic, artistic, leader was vacuous. Concomitantly, the crowd was mostly frenzied which put my perspective of crowd analysis over the frustrating mediocrity of performance. They behaved like hungry fish, the clamoring and excitement of food, any food, overwhelming the musical chemistry, and really anything tonal (even DSO…there I said it), would have been frenzy worthy to many. For me it again begs the question of what John Kadlecik brings to the group. Does he have artistic limitations or is he being asked to plug a hole with a patch that never will look like the existing wall? Based on crowd reaction, song arrangements, song selections, and vocal sharing, it seems Furthur’s goal is patch and go. Lots of Phil directing throughout, and I think the group would benefit psychically from John NOT looking or facing Phil and in fact putting as many barriers between them as possible, so music can talk not Phil. I appreciate that Kadlecik has much to offer, he is a talented player and singer, I just still don’t know where his progression can or will go. Although capable vocally, he was awkward when trading lines with others, and even on his own like during Morning Dew there is too much to fulfill. Mimicking Jerry can only go so far, and Phil and Bob do not provide credibility to complete the artist. Last night was forced, and Im not sure the stale nature of his incorporation will cultivate growth and interest for me.

    There were some new tunes introduced which is sensible and necessary to create an identity for this band. It is a diversion from the patch and go approach of “John is Jerry” and prehaps schizophrenic in the band’s seemingly cross purposes. Still, I think it’s about time. The problem being like any musical group, they need to stand on merit and it is hard with Phil leading the vocals in unfamiliar new melodies. Piggybacking the new tunes with the “fringe” Dead stuff (Masons Children, Unbroken Chain, The Eleven) can give the group identity and on those numbers, John showed ownership and confidence. That said, Unbroken started as a tour de force (initially I thought this is one song that has evolved to better and more exploratory than ever), but after 15 minutes of John running musical progressions without strong dynamics or purpose, it actually became boring and unfocused. Very similar to China Cat. Seeing Kadlecik look to Phil distracts and diminishes, and creates an aura of unfamiliarity within the band where there is no middle or end exploration, only cues and limitations.

    Now I turn to the elephant in the room. Bob Weir looks frail, sings poorly, and despite earpiece and written lyrics, can not professionally perform. “Let it Grow” was a disaster as the early instrumental climax was truncated with “what shall we say…” rather than “round and round…” winding it up in ways we only dream of. Buzzkill is understatement. “Playing in the Band” had no chance, since so much hinges on lyrics and vocal competence, which were again wrong and bad. Despite the overt obfuscation by Bob the crowd SOO wanted to get into it, that I found that reflection the focal point of my experience. People can be very forgiving and patient.

    The camerawork…bring out the clowns. The tripod placement and pre-set overhead camera angles were terrible and outdated in production. Frequent attempts to adjust the angle on a musician off mic were jerky and distracting. Jeff Chimenti was stage left in the shadows with no lighting. In the back stage right were two singers that for me offered no musical gift, and were easily confused with the stage sound board mixer stage right. And speaking of mixes, Im willing to believe that if the mix was more in John’s favor this could have been a noticeably better ball game.

    Box of Rain encored the show. This Lesh selection, along with original tunes provides the best chance of success for a new entity called Furthur. Furthur t-shirts abounded, admittedly to my embarrassment for those wearing them. They need organic growth which is provided by time and musical familiarity done in the dark. “Box” was noteworthy, but forcing the tune by channeling chemical and alcohol enhanced energy from the crowd made it somewhat patronizing to me. That symbolized the night…wasted potential, opportunistic intent, and forced energy. Lastly, someone explain to me the intended band image projecting from the website under the “band” link. This strange trip is about to end under this arrangement.

  6. PK says:

    Hal, Thanks for what I read as a smack on review. I also caught onto the vibe in the mid 70’s and do agree that stretch from the Fillmore ’71 shows through ‘79 were the peak years. Still the magic came back on many an occasion in the subsequent years and it was always worth a trip to see when and where it could be found, even at an occasional mega venue from the mid 80’s on. I made it to this show at the Greek with a friend that had never seen the Grateful Dead or any of the reincarnations. Had hardly ever even listened to the music. He grooved right in, dug the music and the whole scene. We sat (danced) up in the left terrace, which to my pleasant surprise the sound was pretty good and the views were great. Agreed the mixing was a little off from desired perfection, but still what a sweet show it was. We were fortunate the jabbering was at a minimum but the smiles and dancing were free flowing in the left terrace. It’s kind of nice up there with a little room to move around.

    Mike, I think you’re being a wee bit on the negative side. Seeing many shows from ‘76 until present day, this latest mix is a sweet thing. What are you looking for, some non-existent perfect vibe? Who cares about the camera angles? The energy from the music caught both a little of that old magic and something new. It’s gotten much better than the initial attempts by the Other Ones in the late 90’s to bring it back. Furthur is not just bringing it back; they are re-inventing some of it along the way. And by the way, what is the use of bitching about showing up late and having to fight for parking? We also got there a little later than anticipated, ran into a bit of a jam, made a quick turn and had some very helpful people find us parking. Maybe it was just a little bit of karma along the way. We were in well before Alligator got it all started. Continue Furthur my friends.

  7. Mike says:

    I appreciate your reading. For me the perfect progression of what the Dead brought to my existence was Phil’s 70th in SF. It was an astounding performance comingling reheased material, fantastic musicians and measured creative musical exploration. This Greek show, for me, smacked of opportunistic indulgence where JK had no creative spark or room to grow. And what about Bob? Listen to New Year’s ’76 Cow Palace to know how far he fell. I still will never miss a show that includes this nucleus and always long for the creative masterpieces using what Garcia brought to this world as instruction. We could do better than this show.

  8. halmasonberg says:

    Hey Mike. I think the only area that our experiences may have converged is that Kadlecik seems to be holding back. As someone who has seen him numerous times with DSO and knows what he can do, he has come across as quite restrained in most (okay, all) Furthur shows I’ve listened to. Don’t know if it’s him being timid or nervous or simply the structure that Phil and Bobby have set up. Or just a different sound/style. But I still love his playing, I just know that his “voice” is not as clear here as it was in DSO (where he was the de-facto “leader”). But I still think he brings more to the post-Jerry line-up than anyone else I’ve heard them play with. For my personal taste, that is. And I’d like to see him do more.

    As for the video at the show, I barely looked at it. Not crazy about video monitors at shows myself.

    I also can’t help thinking that at least part of your experience of the Greek show was tainted by your unfortunate difficulties in parking, etc. That can be horrendously frustrating and ruin a night. At the very least, it could put one in a rather foul mood that’s hard to shake. But who knows, perhaps you would have felt the same either way. Me, I was VERY happily surprised by what I heard. And happy to separate it from the Grateful Dead (there simply is no Jerry replacement possible, therefore no Grateful Dead). I also agree that Phil can sometimes be a bit controlling of the music. It’s one of the things that I didn’t like about the Phil and Friends show I saw many years ago. It felt too structured. Even the jam peaks felt rehearsed. That said, I think the Grateful Dead could have used a small bit of that Phil structure in the last 10 years of their existence. I think there’s a happy medium and what I witnessed at the Greek felt, for me personally, like it might have been that. A more jazz-influenced interpretation of Dead tunes, not just in sound, but in structure as well. And it sat with me quite kindly.

    Thanks again for sharing your thoughts!

  9. chris says:

    Great reviews and observations. Ive seen Furthur a number of times and thought, surprisingly that tis show lacked the punch I was looking for. Maybe because we had great seats – 10th row center – which seems like a great idea, but I honestly think we were too close. Too close to see how old and frail Bobby looked which for me, was uncomfortable. And secondly, the sounds was muffled and Bobby’s mix seemed way off. There were a few missteps (Good Lovin & Let It Grow) that only seemed amplified by the fact that we were right there. And the crowd was way too tight. Nobody letting loose and dancing – which in my experience is symptomatic of LA crowds, but also probably because the show never launched.

  10. Mike says:

    Indeed JK is the best fit of all the carnations since Jerry. I really just want to make two main points, because you and I do agree on a lot.
    First, in no way do I expect to ever see anything like the Grateful Dead, or more specifically Jerry when attending a show. The argument is specious when one speaks less than glowing of a show, that the commentator “expects Jerry”. We are way past that.
    Second, I admit to kneejerk reactivity when concertgoers blindly accept that a show they are at is flawless or can not be disappointing. All I look for is sincere, well considered observations. My point originally was that if this group played regularly, and with more spontaneity and mutual respect, there MAY develop a musical communication that attracts our crowd with the magic that was the Dead’s essence. The unanswered questions are what kind of artist is Kadlecik in this time and place, and has he been given yet the tools to show us? (I am a big Haynes and Kimock fan, but those musicians had sooner revealed shortcomings in building a cohesive jam band from the remains…) A JK written tune would demonstrate rapidly his incorporate potential. He must be treated equally in the music. Let the other musicians hear what he has to paint, and agree musically when to support his construction, or intervene with alternative brilliance. Lastly, what I shutter to repeat…Bob is of limited value.
    Take care, listen hard and often. Ill be back.

    1. Julian says:

      I love reading these reviews. So well written. I wasn’t at the Greek, but I saw the Eugene and Redmond shows. There was something magical in the air. They were special experiences where the music (including the mix and Kadlicek WAS pronounced enough in the mix), the crowd, the light show and even the rain helped bring everything together in a way that exceeded my expectations and made everyone smile smile smile. Those Furthur shows were better than any of the dead shows I had seen back in the day because the small crowds, the music, and the free flowing anything goes vibes were just right. Sorry the Greek wasn’t as magical as the shows I saw. A week later and I am still buzzing.

      1. halmasonberg says:

        Thanks for sharing, Julian. I really loved the Greek show. Yeah, the mix was less than perfect, but it wasn’t horrible by any stretch. It’s really a minor complaint in an otherwise quite amazing show. This is the only post Jerry incarnation I’ve truly enjoyed. I just love the jazz vibe if this band.

  11. halmasonberg says:

    I agree, Mike, that Kadlecik must be incorporated into the band on a deeper level. However, I’m not ready to throw in the towel on Bobby yet. His voice may not be much anymore, but I’m still fascinated by his playing skills. I don’t know any other rhythm guitarist quite like him. Though I agree I’ve always liked the softer sound of Bobby’s mid-70’s guitar to his later (and current) scratchy tones. But the playing itself hasn’t diminished. It’s just grown into something different.

    Good to hear from you.

  12. Hey Now ! I am sending you this e-mail as a fellow DEAD-HEAD and brother of our clan. The reason I’m e-mailing you is to humbly ask you for a donation towards my “bus fund”. You see, I am a career ski bum ( out here in Colorado ) who has reached the end of his career / lifespan. The ski industry is a very “youth driven” business and once you turn 40… forget abou it. I am planning to purchase the bus pictured and start touring w/ jam bands ( again… I toured w/ GD back in the mid & late 80’s )… and selling bumper stickers, veggie burritos and grilled cheeses… I am working ( a little ) and saving my own money, but it’s extremely slow going. I understand that times are hard and the economy sucks… PLEASE consider a donation… Thank you…

    Edward Dugan
    105 East 5th # 204
    Leadville, CO

    Thanks again…

    ed dugan

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