How TWEET It Is...
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    BLOGHER Featured Blog




    Twist and Shout-Outs

    Some people buy tickets for shows, schedule flights, pack bags, and they're off. Not me! It required a bit of orchestration for me to be gone for a week, and then to also have my husband join for part of it. My own "roadies" jumped in so I could embrace the adventure of hearing grate live music in three states while not worrying about what was going on back home. I'm very grateful!

    • To Dr. Mark Sontag, Dr. David Smolins, Dr. Drimitry Kondrashov of Remedy Medical Group. I wouldn’t be dancing anywhere if it wasn’t for you. Plus, as a nice coincidence, Dr. Sontag (a fan of 25+ years) has also healed the aches and pains of various Grateful Dead band members over the years :-)
    • To my personal IT department, @barrywcrane, who in his spare time is the lead UI designer at Lexity, lead guitar player and husband extraordinaire! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!
    • To my Hannah Montana, Taylor Swift loving daughters. Thanks for being such great girls while I was away. I know there will be many musical adventures in your lives. Somehow, we'll make little Deadheads out of you yet.
    • One of my friends said, “I really like your blog. I have no idea what you’re talking about, but I really like it.” To my friends who are just plain supportive, no matter what I’ve gotten myself into.
    • To my friend, @lcgans, for show-hopping from Las Vegas to Los Angeles with me. Always fun hanging out and dancing with you!
    • To @djmurpho. Still a twitter-handle without a face. Thanks for all the lyrics sharing and nice communications.
    • To @deadheadland and @furthurband. Thanks for sharing the set lists!!
    • To all the new virtual friends who sent me many warm and encouraging private messages. It’ll be great to meet up at a show in the future.
    • To all the nice people I met at the shows who always offered a smile and enthusiasm. To Michael (Grateful Dad) and Paul, who I met in the first few minutes at Red Rocks. Michael it was nice saying hello at The Greek. Wishing your family well.
    • To @qf, thanks for the ongoing inspiration.
    • To @setjeff, thanks for all those retweets and helping make such pretty music. You help keep the vibe alive by being such a great community builder. Here’s to many more shows – for us both!
    • To the gals in the @BlogHer11 community. Thanks for all the enthusiasm when I announced what my blog was about.
    • To @apryls, who also LOVES the music. I missed you along the way. Thank you for all the encouragement and schlepping. Next time...
    • To Ave, thank you for always, always jumping in to help!!!
    • To @bobweir and @phil_lesh, thanks for continuing to do what you do and bringing the new folks, John Kadlecik, Jeff Chimenti, Joey Russo, Jeff Pehrson and Sunshine Becker, into the fold. By continuing to tour at such an aggressive pace, you help foster a community of like-minded, music-seeking-loving fans who, 45 years later just can’t get enough. THANK YOU!!
    • To @roberthunter and @jpbarlow – on the best days and the worst days, your words provide inspiration for many of us to move another step forward in the direction of our own dreams.

    Back to Monterey...

    In 1967 the Grateful Dead had an auspicious bit of exposure at the Monterey Pop Festival. They performed in the line-up after The Who, and before Jimi Hendrix. Pete Townsend smashed his guitar to pieces and Jimi Hendrix lit his guitar on fire. Quite a raucous start for the originators of open-ended jam-style blues-rock n’ roll, which in turn became the prevailing sound of the free-love, peace and hippie movement.

    I grew up in Carmel the neighboring “artist colony” south of Monterey. I hadn’t been to the Monterey Fairgrounds since 1975. Not much had changed. In fact, one might guess the same sawdust still covered the ground at the part-time rodeo arena and part-time jazz festival venue.

    This was going to be a wonderful evening filled with friends and family. I didn’t realize Bob Weir and Phil Lesh hadn’t been back to these fairgrounds since 1967. When Phil took the stage for a solo moment to raise awareness for organ donations and show his gratitude to the young donor <Cody> who saved his life, he began by saying, “It's interesting being back here again after 45 years, not much has changed."

    My brother Michael has been a Grateful Dead fan since the early 80's. While he was a student at Berkeley, the only way he could get in to a show was to work as an usher. Michael is a connector and collector of friends. Wonderful, unrelated, warm and interesting people have always surrounded him. When I went to a show by myself at Red Rocks, it was Michael's friends from Boulder who made room for me to hang out with them. I was welcomed with love and cheer just because Michael and I are related. I'm very fond of people like that. At the first show in Monterey, Michael, his fantastic wife, Kim and their posse had staked out quite a bit of front-and-center real estate to enjoy the show. They were positioned perfectly between Bobby's mike and the sound board. As is typical with Michael and Kim, they introduced us to friends they'd made at shows 25 years ago who are still traveling and meeting up with them. There is a friend of theirs from NY who I believe is trying to best his own all-time record of attending 30+ shows this year.

    During the first set, I sat with friends from my everyday life. They've been Grateful Dead fans for 35 years. Their daughter is also a Dead fan. I once asked what their secret was to raising a daughter who also loved the music? My friend answered, "I went to nine shows while I was pregnant." Ah-ha! I only went to two or three each time. Maybe that's where I went wrong.

    I was looking forward to this show. But, after having just seen six shows in seven days, I'm not sure I had the same level of enthusiasm as my friends and family who were seeing show number one-of-two for this tour. I mean how much better could it be? I was just in LA for those phenomenal shows at The Greek and in Las Vegas. And, of course, Red Rocks! My brother posted a note after seeing the set list of the second LA show asking if there were any good songs left? Uh...yea, actually, they came up with a slew of spectacular oldies but goodies. It was a FANTASTIC show! I was surprised by how many songs they played that I hadn't already heard, including, Promised Land, Candy Man, The Mighty Quinn, Estimated Prophet, Dear Prudence, Not Fade Away and Touch of Grey. The band was about 30 songs away from the end of the tour and yet they did not let up for one moment. There was no sense that the end was near. The band just dove deeper into each song. It was wonderful to hear The Beatles' Dear Prudence, a song I've loved for many years. Estimated Prophet is like an anthem in my house, so at the last show I was attending, it was pretty sweet to hear the words, "California, preaching on the burning shore. California, I'll be knocking on the golden door." To me that song is ALL Bob Weir. I'm sure he can sing it forward, backward and upside down, but I'm moved every single time I hear it. Thanks John Perry Barlow for those illuminating lyrics.

    During the set break I was telling the group we were with about Furthur playing the Pink Floyd song, Time, the night before in LA. And then, I could have sworn during Unbroken Chain near the end of the second set, there was a little Pink Floyd inspired moment of guitar playing in there. Very fun. After the encore, A Touch of Grey, when the arena lights came back on, my sister-in-law, Kim, told me a great story about the filming of the Touch of Grey video. Apparently, after a show at Laguna Seca in 1987, the band asked a couple of hundred fans to join them for the video shoot. Kim was one of the fans. She appears in the video.

    When I checked in with friends and family about the second night in Monterey, they had the same unanimous response: Comes a Time was the stand out song for them. In a night that included Althea, Throwing Stones, Shakedown Street, Morning Dew and Friend of the Devil, I think it would have been hard to pick just one. Even though I wasn't there, it seemed like this was an extraordinary show to end this phase of the Fall tour. According to my trusted reporters, the grateful and joyful crowd relished the few minutes the band spent embracing one another with warm hugs after the encore song One More Saturday Night concluded the night.

    A couple of non-Deadhead friends asked if I was "Furthured-out" by now and if I was sick of the music and ready to hear something else? NO! and NO! I feel like I was just getting started.

    Interview with Bob Weir in the Monterey Herald

    Thanks to Dylan Carney for use of his photo


    Supermen at the Greek

    The Greek is a classic, elegant venue. It sits alongside historic mansions and manicured lawns in a Hollywood Hills neighborhood reckoning back to the golden age of cinema. Since it had just rained, Hollywood had that "just cleaned" fresh scent of wet Eucalyptus and Conifer trees. If you know LA at all, this is one of those subtle signs that fall is coming. I was surprised by how many faces looked familiar from Las Vegas, or was it Red Rocks? This is exactly what I was hoping would happen. That the big world of FURTHUR/Grateful Dead fans would seem a bit smaller. I met many new people, who were also following the tour. I was touched by the many encouraging and lovely tweets and emails I was receiving. I was anxious to match faces with twitter-handles. This proved to be more challenging than I expected. I love creating small communities within bigger ones. Somehow, even with all the enthusiasm and interest, it became harder to tear "us" all away from our seats, friends, food, conversations, etc... to go to a meet-up. If you were one of the generous and kind emailers or tweeters who uses an icon as your profile image and I never did get to put a face with your name; thanks for all the virtual warmth. I'm sure we'll meet up at a future show.

    This show had a different vibe than the others earlier in the week because of the vast visual differences in the audience. I would consider many of the fans we saw at The Greek to be a Clark Kent-type of Deadhead. If you strip away the Paramount Pictures jackets, Dodgers hats, suits, ties and 'studio-wear,' underneath you might find a Steali t-shirt ready to emerge at the sound of the first chords of The Wheel or Uncle John's Band.

    While the rain threatened, it never dampened the fans or the show. The first night was cold, and the music was exceptional. The crowd went seriously nuts from Magnolia Mountain into Jack Straw into New Speedway Boogie. My husband declared Jack Straw to be one of the finest he'd heard, in thirty years. In fact, four days later, he still couldn't stop talking about it. It's kind of like me going on and on about the band closing with Brokedown Palace at Red Rocks. As I mentioned previously, when a favorite song makes it to the set list, it's hard to feel like you're going home empty-handed. The music was really thunderous and passionate. The band was so coordinated, tight and having so much fun.

    Now that I had seen them perform in three different venues in as many days, I was trying to determine how the band members were effected by where they were playing. I was wondering if there would be any signs that outdoor is better than indoor? Or if earlier in the day and being able to see and connect with the audience is better than playing to a dark house? Red Rocks is just stunning! Especially the view from the stage. Although I've heard there are band members who are prone to altitude sickness. The Joint in Las Vegas, with its great acoustics, was the only indoor venue I attended and much more pleasant than the 1st Bank Center in Broomfield or Bill Graham Civic in San Francisco. It was amazing how my focus narrowed when there were fewer environmental distractions and I could really take in every chord, word and nuance of each song.

    The stand out songs for me were, Bertha, and Cumberland Blues into Brown-Eyed Women. Plus, as previously mentioned, that version of He's Gone will stay with me forever! On the second night, Ripple, I Know You Rider and Attics of My Life were just superb. SUPERB!

    On the first night they ran up against the clock and the Hollywood Hills curfew. For the encore, after Phil's "donor rap," when he said, "thanks for warming us up," the band flew on stage, and played Johnny B. Goode in about 180 seconds. Afterward, Bob said, "we're out of time!"

    The second night opened with Sugar Magnolia into Cassidy. The crowd went wild. When they played Here Comes the Sun and then Peaceful Valley, we were wondering if this might be a tribute night for Steve Jobs. Sure enough, Phil announced it officially before the set-break.

    The Griffith Observatory, up the hill from the The Greek Theatre, used to be well-known for the Laserium light and music show that originated there and ran for 33 years, closing in 2006. I was delighted when I heard FURTHUR begin playing Time by Pink Floyd. How appropriate, not only for a Steve Jobs tribute show, but also considering the venue. I love it when there's a creative confluence at that level. As you can image, a Los Angelino crowd who knows the history of Pink Floyd music set to a laser light show, erupted with cheers and sang every word along with Phil, who was grinning from ear-to-ear! These are live music moments you cannot buy on a CD!

    On the second night, we were sitting next to Spencer and Kevin, from San Diego. Spencer told us a great story about driving to Miami Beach from New York, during Spring break of 1968. As they drove south on I-95 near Orlando, they saw a gathering in a field off the road. They pulled over and discovered a hippie hang-out and party, and the Grateful Dead playing music to hundreds of people. He's been a fan ever since.

    When the clouds parted, Jupiter was shining brightly above the stage. A perfect Los Angeles evening. During the previous (CO and LV) four shows, I kept sending messages back to California saying how exceptional the music was, over and over again! After the conclusion of the second show in Los Angeles, my husband was spellbound. He knew as well as I did, this had been FURTHUR and the long-cherished music of the Grateful Dead, at its finest!!

    A Los Angeles Times review of the October 5th show.

    Thanks to Blisstanger and Gratefulweb for the videos!


    Phil Said, "If you hadn't figured it out already, tonight is for Steve Jobs."

    Set List Courtesy of @FURTHURBAND

    Set 1

    Sugar Magnolia

    Colors of the Rain
    Here Comes the Sun
    Peaceful Valley
    Death Don't Have No Mercy

    Set 2

    Dear Mr. Fantasy
    The Wheel
    Uncle John s Band
    Mountain Song>
    I Know You Rider
    The Other One>
    St. Stephen
    So Many Roads
    Supplication Jam>
    Uncle John's Band Reprise
    E: Attics of My Life



    "Nothin's Gonna Bring Him Back..."

    I knew without a shadow of a doubt they'd play it. How could they not? I wasn't prepared for what happened, for what evolved, for what they offered, for what was shared.

    It was as if Bobby assumed the role of preacher, they rode into the opening smooth and slowly. It was elegant, it was classic, it was respectful. It was old school rock and roll, blues, gospel. Every single note was accurate and perfect. It mattered for a different reason. It was a eulogy without words; orchestrated, sung and played with heart, meaning and reverence. Mostly respect. A set of icons paying homage to an icon. Leaders of a movement of creativity honoring a leader of genius creativity. There was no mistaking it! I know I didn't read too much into it. They went around and around and around on the verses, on the chorus. Then, it wove into a gospel. The crowd became the gospel choir. All bodies swaying to exactly the same rhythm, singing with all their hearts and soul! Not a single word was spoken! Every single fan knew!

    RIP Steve Jobs. Thank you for staying true to your vision!


    Rat in a drain ditch, caught on a limb, you know better but I know him.
    Like I told you, what I said, Steal your face right off your head.

    Now he's gone, now he's gone, Lord he's gone, he's gone.
    Like a steam locomotive, rollin' down the track
    He's gone, gone, nothin's gonna bring him back...He's gone.

    Nine mile skid on a ten mile ride, hot as a pistol but cool inside.
    Cat on a tin roof, dogs in a pile,
    Nothin' left to do but smile, smile, smile!!!!

    Now he's gone, now he's gone Lord he's gone, he's gone.
    Like a steam locomotive, rollin' down the track
    He's gone, gone, nothin's gonna bring him back...He's gone.

    Goin' where the wind don't blow so strange,
    Maybe off on some high cold mountain chain.
    Lost one round but the price wasn't anything,
    A knife in the back and more of the same.

    Same old, rat in a drain ditch, caught on a limb,
    You know better but I know him.
    Like I told you, what I said,
    Steal your face right off your head.

    Now he's gone, now he's gone Lord he's gone, he's gone.
    Like a steam locomotive, rollin' down the track
    He's gone, gone, nothin's gonna bring him back...He's gone.

    Ooh, nothin's gonna bring him back.

    Words: Robert Hunter, Music: Jerry Garcia