Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Bombass Groove of the Week #3

No podcast this week, but we've got something better. The Dead (sans "Grateful" in honor of Jerry Garcia) played a show on October 13, 2008 at Penn State with the Allman Brothers Band. The lineup included Warren Haynes on lead guitar and Jeff Chimenti on keyboards, complementing Phil Lesh on bass, Bob Weir on rhythm guitar, and Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart on drums, respectively.

The set was basically a greatest hits collection. (See setlist below.) After Barack Obama's prerecorded video speech, which included a hilarious "Touch of Grey" joke, they opened with "Truckin'," which segued into a formulaic "U.S. Blues." The big bust out of the night was "Help on the Way>Slipknot!>Franklin's Tower." The crowd enthusiastically cheered as Lesh dropped his signature opening bass bombs. Initial vocal flub notwithstanding, the performance was spirited and refreshing.  Haynes and the band have a loose rapport, letting the songs lead them down unknown paths, in the hopes of reaching a transcendental moment. See "St. Stephen."

It's a privilege to hear the boys get back together and play for a good cause. Who knows what Jerry would have thought? The Grateful Dead was loath to make political endorsements during their career. Perhaps because there was a possibility of alienating some fans, especially when the point of the band and their music was to unite people in a shared experience. Regardless, here they are, The Dead, live on stage, playing together for a crucial cause. Let's just hope that they reunite for a tour in the near future.

Barack Obama Speech Video 
U.S. Blues
Help on the Way>
Franklin's Tower
Playin' in the Band>
Dark Star
St. Stephen>
Unbroken Chain>
The Other One>
Throwing Stones>
Playin' Reprise
Touch of Grey>
Not Fade Away

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