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Grateful Dead Hour #3
Week of September 19, 1988

California guitarist Henry Kaiser (who is the grandson of the man for whom the Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center was named, in case you were wondering) talks about his new recording of "Dark Star," the classic vehicle of Grateful Dead improvisation. The program includes two short segments of the 30-minute version from the CD (the LP /cassette version is somewhat shorter).

Henry selected the rest of the music in this program, including Mason's Children"; "Happiness Is Drumming," a 1976 Diga Rhythm Band track which became "Fire on the Mountain"; and "New Potato Caboose," from the Grateful Dead's second album, Anthem of the Sun.

Part 1 25:36
Kaiser: Well, David, I grew up here in the San Francisco area during that summer of love time. I listened to the Grateful Dead and a lot of bands, and the Grateful Dead specifically really got me interested in improvisation in music, and expression with an electric guitar and to make it do really exciting things.
I listened to it all my musically active life, but I never played that kind of music much before. And I suddenly realized I can. It's okay to do that.

Q: What do you mean "It's okay to do that"? Was there some musical reason for you not to get involved with Grateful Dead music before?

Kaiser: I'm sorry to say that most of the people who normally buy my records think of themselves as these kind of intellectual, ay-vant-garde types, and they kind of frown on the Grateful Dead... They more tend to like Talking Heads, Brian Eno, and things like that, and my taste is much towards the Grateful Dead... Not many people I play with are interested in the Grateful Dead.
So I took Glenn Phillips, an amazing guitar player from Atlanta Georgia, who was in a group called the Hampton Grease Band and has made many fine records of his own; one of my few musical friends who loves the Dead... We got together and looked for what would make the perfect rhythm section for us to do Dark Star, which is the biggest challenge, which is the most exciting thing to do, which is our favorite Dead song. We picked the rhythm section of another guitarist friend of mine, Bill Frisell: Joey Baron, drums; Kermit Driscoll, bass; and Hank Roberts, cello. They weren't that into the Dead, but we rehearsed a little bit and coerced the spirit into them and had a good time in the studio. It was the longest night - the vernal equinox of 1987, December, in New York City.

Dark Star (excerpt) - Henry Kaiser, Those Who Know History Are Doomed to Repeat It (SST CD 198, 1988)

Q: So the bass and the drums and the cello were all musicians who were not into the Grateful Dead before?

Kaiser: That's right, David. They were all jazz musicians from New York who weren't into the Grateful Dead at all. I had to first convince them that this was a worthwhile undertaking, and second, get them to play that kind of music and get the spirit of Dark Star to play through them. And for a couple of months I'd been taking a very close look at Weir and Garcia's guitar stylings myself, trying to decide some way to relate to it and still be myself.

Q: So what did you tell these musicians by way of explaining how Grateful Dead music works?

Kaiser: I gave them tapes of about four different Dark Stars that were radically different ... and said, "Here's this song, the Dead's primary vehicle for improvisation in rock - for space improvisation in rock. Look at it - they play great!" And the guys said, "Yeah, you're right. It's a lot better than I thought ... These guys do sound pretty good."

I said, "We're going to let that same spirit play through us, but we're going to play like ourselves. You guys are all improvisers - 95% of the music you play is improvisation, so that's no problem. This is just a special style of improvisation, a particular style. It's different from jazz improvisation, pure jazz or jazz fusion, or avant-garde jazz, atonal jazz - and in a way it includes all those things. And I think you guys are really gonna dig this, because you're really going to get to express yourselves."

We rehearsed for two days in a recording studio in New York, and the first day the rhythm section was very skeptical compared to Glenn Phillips' and my attitude towards the music.

The second day they were pretty darn skeptical, too, but the third day, when we got to the recording studio everybody seemed to see the light, and the music just flowed really naturally and played itself right through us.

And I feel like I really got away with something, 'cause it was a hard thing to do. It's hard to play that kind of music unless you've played together for a long time, and we hadn't played together for a long time.

I wasn't trying to do a Grateful Dead clone kind of thing, or an imitation Grateful Dead, but I was trying to do both kind of a little tribute and a thank-you to the Dead, who I owe so much to for turning my musical attention to improvisation and a lot of good qualities that the Dead's music always has shown. And also I wanted to let that spirit of Dark Star - which the Grateful Dead have been, I think sady, neglecting for quite a while, for a few years now - I wanted to give that spirit a chance to play through some folks who could play and say whatever it wanted to say. Because that's how I think of it, as kind of a shamanistic thing. Dark Star's something that plays you - plays through you.

Dark Star (excerpt)

Kaiser: When I finished the recording I was very pleased with it, and I remembered how on the original Dark Star single there was a very brief little bit of poetry, that never showed up in Dark Star again, that Hunter recites. So I sent a tape of the finished Dark Star to Hunter and said, "Would you want to put the extra lyrics on the end of this for me? I'd be real grateful," and he just sent me a tape of it to put on there.

Happiness Is Drumming - Diga Rhythm Band, Diga (Round Records RX-110, 1976)

Part 2 26:32
Kaiser: New Potato Caboose is a song from Anthem of the Sun. It's in the middle of the first side, and the Dead haven't played it for twenty years. it's a song that I miss a lot. It's one of my favorite ten or so Dead songs. The lyrics are by the late Bobby Petersen.

New Potato Caboose - 2/68?

Kaiser: Mason's Children is a song the Dead performed only a few times, probably less than 10 times back in late '69, early 1970 before they discarded it from their performing repertoire without ever releasing a recording of it. I think it's a very interesting and good song, which you were kind enough to bring to my attention. We got together with some friends of ours here in the Bay Area and played Dark Star quite a few times, and you showed me Mason's Children.
I said, "Boy, that would be really cool to record that tune!" and I said, "David, do you want to do that?" So you're on the record, too!

Mason's Children->
Black Peter - 1/10/70 Community Concourse, San Diego CA

Program notes
"Happiness Is Drumming" is from the 1976 album by the Diga Rhythm Band, with a guest performance by Jerry Garcia on guitar. Robert Hunter wrote some words for it and it turned into the Grateful Dead's "Fire on the Mountain," which appears on the album Shakedown Street.

Selected Henry Kaiser discography

* Henry Kaiser: Those Who know History Are Doomed to Repeat It. SST CD-198 (This is the one with "Dark Star" and "Mason's Children")
* French/Frith/Kaiser/Thompson: Live, Love, Larf & Loaf. Rhino RNCD-70831
* Henry Kaiser: Devil in the Drain. SST 118
* Henry Kaiser, Charles K. Noyes, Sang-Won Park: Invite the Spirit. OAO Celluloid CELL 5008/5009
* Crazy Backwards Alphabet: Crazy Backwards Alphabet. SST 110
* Fred Frith & Henry Kaiser: With Enemies Like These, Who Needs Friends? SST CD-147
* Henry Kaiser: Remarrying for Money. SST Records

I helped Kaiser prepare for his New York "Dark Star" session both by playing some Grateful Dead tapes for him and by jamming with him (and a sympathetic bassist and drummer) in his studio. We had so much fun playing old Grateful Dead songs that after Kaiser returned from New York with his "Dark Star" recordings we decided to continue as a band, which we call Crazy Fingers. Henry also invited me to play and sing on "Mason's Children," which we recorded at San Francisco's Mobius Music. I was delighted to participate, since I regard "Mason's Children" as a neglected Grateful Dead treasure. (Coincidentally, "Mason's Children" appears on a new album by Living Earth; you'll hear that version on an upcoming Grateful Dead Hour.) Anyone who suspects me of promoting Henry Kaiser's record merely because of my own participation in it need only listen to "Dark Star" and the spectacular version of "Ode to Billy Joe" on the album. -- D.G.


Rainforest Action Network

On September 24 the Grateful Dead concluded their nine-show run at Madison Square Garden with a benefit concert to fight the destruction of the rainforests, a vital part of our planet's life support system. Bruce Hornsby and the Range and Suzanne Vega were also on the bill, with the proceeds going to Greenpeace, Cultural Survival and the Rainforest Action Network. The following is a transcript of an interview with Randy Hayes, director of the Rainforest Action Network.

Randy Hayes: Rainforest Action Network is an organization based in San Francisco working internationally with tribal peoples in the Amazon and in Malaysia, environmental groups in third world countries, in Indonesia and Africa and Brazil, as well as environmental groups in the industrial centers of the north: Japan and Europe and the United States.

Tropical rainforests are the oldest and most complex ecosystems on the earth. They once occupied 14% of the land mass, and, largely since World War II, that's been cut in half - 7%. They're being destroyed at the rate of about 100 acres a minute.

The destruction of the rainforest is complicated, but it can be figured out, and it can be solved. In some respects this is probably one of the more solveable of the complex global environmental issues. And that's because it takes money to cut the rainforest down, to finance these destructive projects. And that money comes from the industrial north, from Japan and Europe and the US. There's probably more to be done in the United States to save the Amazon than down in Brazil.

A lot of the multinational corporations based in the United States, the engineering firms that build massive projects like the Alaska oil pipeline, are also building hydroelectric dams and roads in the Amazon and in African rainforest and in Southeast Asian rainforest. So in many respects our foreign aid dollars are not really going to benefit the poor people of the third world; they go to hire the construction companies that destroy rainforest.

The strategy to save the rainforest - there's going to have to be a multifaceted strategy of people here in the United States, Europe, and Japan, stopping their consumption of products that destroy rainforest. Tropical hardwoods, teaks and mahoganies, hamburgers that are raised in rainforest. Until recently Burger King was a major contributor to the destruction of tropical rainforest. They'd bought $35 million worth of beef from the country of Costa Rica, and in Costa Rica the major cause of the destruction of rainforest was conversion of forest into cattle pasture.

So we can do a lot here in the United States to turn that around. The Grateful Dead have offered to do this benefit for the rainforest. Garcia, Mickey Hart, Bobby Weir and the other band members are really concerned about his issue. They understand that a rainforest is non-renewable.

What we're talking about here is that the life support systems of the planet are being threatened by the cutting of the rainforest.

For more information you can write to the Rainforest Action Network at 300 Broadway, Suite 28, San Francisco, California 94133. If you're interested in setting up a local rainforest action group, write to us and ask for the RAG manual. We need you to contribute and participate in monthly letter-writing campaigns, so that the eyes of the world are upon the different governments, countries, and legislators about this issue.

For 15 bucks you can join the Rainforest Action Network, and then you will get monthly updates. One of the things you can do right off the bat to get involved in the rainforest issue is to go down to your corner video store and rent "The Emerald Forest," invite a few friends over for beer and pizza, show the film and have a letter-writing party. Just call the Rainforest Action Network and we can give you information about where letters are needed to be written.

You can call the Rainforest Action Network at 415-398-4404.

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Grateful Dead Hour #12 and #13
Weeks of November 21 and 28, 1988

Two programs exploring the catholic and cosmopolitan consciousness of Grateful Dead percussionist and world music maven Mickey Hart, whose recent extracurricular activities include a series of compact discs with the ambitious title "The World," a high-tech sonic scrubbing of the priceless Folkways music archive, and presentation of the Gyuto Monks Tibetan Tantric Choir.

The first six titles of the CD series The World: Recordings of Music from Around the Globe have been remastered and released by Rykodisc: Diga Rhythm Band, Diga; Drums of Passion: the Invocation, by Babatunde Olatunji; Eclipse, Sudanese folk music by Hamza el-Din (who performs with the Grateful Dead in concert from time to time); Sarangi, music of India; The Music of Upper and Lower Egypt; and the Golden Gate Gypsy Orchestra's Traveling Jewish Wedding. Ryko has also put together a 3" sampler CD with introductions by Mickey (sampled herein).

DIGA: THE JEWEL IN THE CROWN

Hart: The Diga record is the jewel in the crown. It's one of my favorite of all. We were all students at the Ali Akbar College of Music. Zakir [Hussein] was there, teaching tabla. I had known Zakir from the old days when Alla Rakha, his father, Ravi Shankar's drummer, he introduced me to Zakir, and we became friends, buddies, and then co-composers. And he had a band called the Talvadim Rhythm Band. When I joined in '75 we renamed it Diga and made a record in '76, as the Diga Rhythm Band. We had to baffle everything with transparent baffles, because we had to see our hands moving. But remember, tablas being in the room with drum sets and congas and marimbas and duggies - these are tiny, delicate instruments in there amongst the bigger boys of the forest, you know, the drums.

Q: How did you pull it off?

Hart: Transparent baffles, and also everybody had to learn how to play on earphones. Most of them were kids, you know. It was a percussion orchestra made up of members of the Ali Akbar College of Music. And so they really weren't proficient at the use of earphones. As a matter of fact, all of Diga is actually a live performance. You know - no splices and stuff like that. We performed it from beginning to end, and having these fourteen or fifteen people doing unison at those speeds and in those time signatures was impossible. We practiced it for three months, and then opened up the microphones and recorded in three days. We never really did have a chance to mix this record. It was the end of Round Records... I remember going in there trying mix this record at Wally Heider's... We had six days to mix the record, and of course it was the most complicated record I had ever done in my life. Each day it took us six hours to set up, and by the time we set up the session was ending, and they broke us down every day.

Q: Why did it take so long to set up?

Hart: Because it was so complicated. We had gates on every channel, and we had to equalize everything [adjust the tone quality]. It was recorded at the barn under weird, funny conditions, and there was a lot of processing that had to go in it just to make it sound crystal clear. We'd do a lot of cleaning. We were really struggling with it, and they broke us down for three days. And on the fourth day I walked in and I said, "This studio is ours in the name of the people," and we took the studio. Me and Sweet William, a Hell's Angel friend of mine, we took Wally's for three days. And Wally was standing down there on the steps on the first floor, negotiating with us. I said "Sorry, Wally, the studio is ours." Trying to mix under those conditions - my engineer was going crazy, I was trying to keep the owners away, keep them at bay, there are Hell's Angels everywhere and you know, tension filled the air, and it was no way to really mix. So now, with Tom Flye, who has an extraordinary ear, we went back and delicately remixed the Diga record. So it's a completely new mix - it's sterling, it just shines - it's as good as it gets, now. [Editor's note: He ain't lying! The remix of Diga is spectacular!]

Q: Twelve years' better technology . . .

Hart: Well, there wasn't even digital delay then. There was no digital reverb. We were making reverb in cans and in tubes, in echo chambers and... you know, in the old way.

Q: Can you describe the progression [from "Happiness Is Drumming" to "Fire on the Mountain"] - which came first -

Hart: Gee, I don't remember, actually. I think "Happiness Is Drumming" came first, and then "Fire" came out of that... I can't remember; it's all a blur, to be honest with you.

Q: Describe the process of getting your vocal on...

Hart: Well, [lyricist Robert] Hunter being my vocal guru and everything, it's sort of in the Hunter style, which is sort of my style, of singing. It's more like barking, you know, and rapping - half rapping, barking, and just being real intense and sort of really eating the words up a little bit, getting into it, and doing it at twice the speed as the Grateful Dead.

THE GYUTO MONKS [The sound of the Gyuto Monks is a wonder of the musical, scientific and religious worlds. It's the sound of prayer, a celebration of the spirit manifested in their phenomenal stretching of the limits of the human voice. There's a recording of this choir on Windham Hill Records, The Gyuto Monks: Tibetan Tantric Choir (Windham Hill 2001 P LP, cassette, compact disc).]

Hart: Huston Smith went over to India to study them in '65 - but to study religion. He was a professor of religion at MIT. He went over there, and as he told it to me, he went there, and he arrived in the afternoon, and then they had dinner, and he went to sleep. And in morning at about four o'clock he heard this incredible sound coming from the courtyard. He peered over the balcony and there were 140 monks, doing [makes rumbling sound]. And he just sat there and looked, and his mouth fell open. And then every one of them stopped, except one - they all stopped but one monk! - and in that voice he heard the chord ... and just said, Now I know why I'm here. So he forgot all about the religious aspect of it and studied the multiphonic chanting. Took it back to MIT, put it on a computer, analyzed it, and found out where they were vibrating, and how they were - at least physically, what it looked like. Oh boy, this is the rarest of the rare, David. When you talk about the extended voice - in Western vocal music each person in a choir holds one note. One person stops, that note goes away. Two people stop out of three, two notes go away. And the chord's gone. Not so in the Monks. Each person, or each monk, each lama, holds three notes simultaneously - a chord, you see - and that's the special thing about these monks. They are celibate monks that go to the Gyuto college - who are the Gyuto College Tantric choir, and it's a monastery, it's in India. And they specialize in higher forms of meditation. This is the Dalai Lama's choir. And that's what they do all day: they pray. And they pray at 70 cycles - their prayer is through chant. They recite the Sanskrit text, but their low note is 70 cycles. So they're all holding three notes, they're vibrating at 70 cycles, and then half of them split down to 68, the other half split to 72, and then they'll come back and forth, in and out of unity. And I'm talking about subtle things here. I'm talking about nuance. And if you participate in this kind of music, it's transformational in nature.

Q: What's the purpose of this tour?

Hart: Well, to spread the dharma, I think, you know, the teachings. If Buddhism is going to exist and is going to flourish, it's time to get out. And I think the Dalai Lama let them come out, because they've only been out two or three times in four hundred years. This is not exactly a touring group. Letting them out, letting people see a little bit about who they are, and the humanness of what theyUre about to do, and the compassion, is what Buddhism is all about.

Q: Do new people join this order?

Hart: Well, not too much any more. I mean it's one of those things, they're getting less and less monks to be able to do it. There's not that many to pull on. Because this is a very rigorous - these are athletes. There's about 110 of them left. There used to be four or five hundred of them, and it's a tradition that has basically been unchanged in 450 years. They're trying to empty their bodies and their mind of all evil or bad or daily thoughts and replenish their vessel with new thoughts. Through their prayers they hope to make a better world. They conjure the deity, they bring him down, the Mahakala, the Yamantaka... They entertain him, they send him away to do their bidding. This is very serious business, but I might add that they're very joyful, very happy, fun-loving - they're very light. They're what we call enlightened people. They have lightened up. They are light! I mean, they go through New York City like it wasnUt even there!

"A DATE WITH MICKEY HART"

Hart: I recorded the music of upper and lower Egypt in 1978 in Aswan. This is music of the Nile river, always flowing, and it's music of the desert, soft, dry, relentless, timeless. Together, the river and the desert are the essence of Egypt. The Aswan boatmen sail up and down the Nile, playing and singing these songs. It helps them in their work, and it adds music and joy to their lives. "Nugumi" is a song of communal celebration. Forced out by the floodwaters rising behind the Aswan High Dam, the body of En-nugumi, an Egyptian folk hero, was moved from its tomb in Toshuka to a new one at Aswan. (narration from "World" sampler CD)

Hart: Upper and Lower Egypt was recorded on our trip to Egypt in '78, to the great pyramids, where we played three nights. Afterwards I went on a little hike down the - up the Nile, or however you like; down is up and up is down, of course - for a month, where I traveled into the Sudan with Hamza el-Din. Hamza's village is Kom Ombo, which is about 600 kilometers southwest of Aswan. I recorded from Alexandria, which is the Mediterranean coast, down to the Sudan. So on this record is music of the Bedouins, the tribespeople - the music of the desert - and there's music of the water, the Aswan boatmen.there's the Nile, and there's the desert, and this is a representation of both.

Q: Now that there are portable DAT machines, you're just going to have to go back around the world and collect all the music again.

Hart: Yeah, but unfortunately it's not that simple, David. It takes me weeks sometimes to find this music. You just don't open up shop and go out to the country and open your microphones. It took a lot of effort, and that was more than ten years ago. I could hardly find the music then, so we've got cultural grayout - you know, we have a lot of music being lost. We're left with the remnants of what the old music was...

Q: Are you thinking about doing more expeditions like this?

Hart: Oh, absolutely. I love going out in the field and recording. To me that's high adventure, that's a date with Mickey Hart, you know? I mean, going out in the field is my - that's my vacation. You have do do whatever you have to do to get the recordings, because you're at the mercy of nature. There's the wind, there's the cars, there's the dogs, there's even - one time a cricket destroyed my recording... I was going to record the Koran. This was when I was in Cairo, on my way out. So we did a test run, and we found the best chanter, and we went... Underneath the mosques there are these long places where they clean their feet. They're like latrines. And they're really long, under the whole mosque, and they usually are made of some kind of resonant material, like tile. We put him downstairs, because upstairs it was too noisy, the street and everything would come in. He started to sing, and there was one cricket in there, and it was the loudest thing in the world. It went "Chirp chirp. Chirp chirp." This guy would sing, and every time he'd stop - "Chirp chirp." In the field you're at the mercy of the elements, and it's a lot of fun. It's nothing like the studio. It's an adventure a minute, you know, and then when you come back with it in hand, it's really a great thrill. I usually take my kids, or Billy's kid, or Ram Rod's kid, or one of the Grateful Dead equipment guys' children, on these runs, because they love it, it's an adventure. When we did the Arctic, my crew was all under 11 years old. I had three of them, and the oldest was 11 - Creek, my stepson, was 11. See, Billy's boy was 10, and Ram Rod's boy was nine. Each one of them has their own job, and they bring back the goods. It's a good family adventure for me.

Musics that you hear on [Rykodisc] are, hopefully, the finest recordings that you can possibly get of it at the time. Remember, when I recorded 15 years ago or 10 years ago, there was no digital technology. But it's the best analog you can find, and that music isn't available any more. If I were to go back there, I would have to go find those same Bedouin tribesmen. They're never in the same place for more than two or three weeks. I mean, this is the desert, David. It's just not that simple. You have to go there, you have to make friends, you have to hang out, you have to know what you're doing. I know all the beats, or the grooves, or the customs of the people when I go there, I study it before I go there. And then we usually have a big party - I'll get lamb or something, or a cow, we'll slaughter it, we'll have a party and we'll play and I'll record. It's not a real recording session as much as - this music isn't like that. This music is music of celebration and trance, and of transformation, and that's what all of this music has in common. It has transformational aspects to it.

THE BEAST AND BIG HAIR

Hart: The Beast is just the drums. The center drum is "home plate." Those are the eyes of the beast, those three big drums. It's a three-eyed beast, you have to understand. The Big Noise comes from Big Hair.

Q: And it's called Big Hair because -

Hart: - it makes your Big Hair stand up. Because it is Big Hair. That's why it's called Big Hair. The heart of it is a Dynacord [one for each drummer]. It's a computer; that's where I store the samples. The samples come from the locker of all the percussion instruments Billy and I have collected over the years. We put the sounds in there and we manipulate them through processing and MIDI, in real time. I can call it up instantaneously, and they don't get broken, and - I mean, to carry my collection around it takes a whole semi just by itself. I have a [mixing] board behind me that all this comes through. Bob Bralove brings it up through the board, and I have pedals where my pads are on the drum riser that introduce into the signal what I want. And then, of course, I have my MIDI selector up there; it is preprogrammed to change all of the devices. That's what MIDI is all about. So when I go to 22, I get quattro delays. When I go to 24, I get infinite reverb and panned delays. I've already programmed what I want, so I have many of those settings, so I can choose any setting any night that I want.

Q: So when people see you turn to the side there, and you're hitting that rack of pads...

Hart: Each pad is a sound, and I have [64] sounds on each pad because of the computer, because I can swtch between banks. I have eight banks [of eight sounds each].

Q: What happens then when you're playing on the Beam or some of the things on the Beast and stuff -

Hart: The Beam is real-time.

Q: It doesn't get signal processed?

Hart: Oh, yes, it does. The Beam definitely gets signal processing. It gets signal processing, but the Beast doesn't, except the octave divider. Like Healy will dump home plate sometimes down an octave.

Q: That's where that big roaring bass note comes from...

Hart: That's right, that's an octave divider. That takes what I have as my low octave and takes it down another octave.

Q: So there's a lot of interactive stuff going on here. You're controlling your stuff, and Bralove's working - are you giving him instructions?

Hart: No, when it goes on, instructions are pretty well inaudible.

Q: Bralove's jammin' too?

Hart: He's jammin'.

Q: How much do you and Billy plan ahead on these things?

Hart: Well, what we do is, usually, before the second set we'll go up there and determine what we want to do - approximately. We'll say it's "Marching to hell" or something, "Rhythm Devils at 60,000 feet," or "Peace in the Middle East" - we'll have some kind of a theme that he'll say. And then we'll try to think of what sound would be appropriate, like "Drums over India" or something. Any thought that comes into our mind, you know. And then we try to get some disk that in some way has a relationship to it, or at least we might think it does, you know? It doesn't have to really relate to it in any way except there's sort of a unifying thought, even if it doesn't sound anything like it.... We prearrange it, and then usually we donUt follow that [laughs]. It's just a starting point, you know, and the thing is that it's carved in stone and we can change it at any moment.

Q: Best of both worlds.

Hart: It's Grateful Dead.


DYNAMICS

Hart: We blew out half of the PA in Laguna Seca, a 300-amp circuit, at 66 thousand watts! We took one half of the PA down at Laguna Seca. [Grateful Dead sound man Dan] Healy says that's a world record. That's the most current ever drawn for one percussive note.

Q: What did you hit to do it?

Hart: Well, I laid into the Beast at the same time as he dumped the octave, and so we took the whole mains out. We took the whole right side of the PA out - it went out for about a minute until it regained its composure.

Q: Could you hear it from where you were?

Hart: No. I was told about it afterwards. 'Cause we'd never taken down a main like that. The PA's never gone off like that. Especially for one note. He presented me with a plaque with a golden - he took the circuit breaker and gold plated it. And I have a little plaque that says "To Mickey Hart, for the most current ever drawn on one percussive note," and the date, and the amps and the watts.


WHAT GRATEFUL DEAD RECORD?

Q: What's going on with the Grateful Dead record?

Hart: Grateful Dead record? What do you mean, Grateful Dead record?

Q: Well, there are rumors afoot. . .

Hart: Rumors?

Q: Various stories abound. . .

Hart: Stor

Q: Is it being worked on?

Hart: Of course it's being worked on. We work on it in mysterious ways. Are we in the studio right now working on it every minute, you know, and knocking out tracks? No. It will happen. It will see the light of day.

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Grateful Dead Hour #37
Week of May 15, 1989

In 1987 the Grateful Dead released their most successful album ever, In the Dark, and made news with two best-selling home videotapes: The Making of the "Touch of Grey" Video [directed by Justin Kreutzmann] and So Far. So Far, directed by Jerry Garcia and Len Dell'Amico, is 55 minutes of nonstop Grateful Dead, bouncing back and forth between a studio session and the 1985 New Year's Eve show at the Oakland Coliseum. The performance includes Uncle John's Band, Playing in the Band, Lady with a Fan, Space, Rhythm Devils, Throwing Stones and Not Fade Away. Jerry and Len spent more than a year building a visual feast to match the soundtrack, using different images and techniques for different passages. They covered a lot of technological ground, from optical to electronic to computer animation, using newsreel film, tarot cards, microscopic and telescopic photography, religious images, human faces - all kinds of stuff, interleaved with shots of the musicians playing music. It's not only a fabulously entertaining piece of video, it's also pretty good music to watch with your eyes closed. The following is from a press conference held in New York City September 14, 1987.

Dell'Amico: We did a live show at Oakland Coliseum, and the live pieces were taken from that show. Then we shot four days at Marin Vets - which is where the album basics were recorded - without an audience, and then intercut them.

Garcia: The gamble was, could we go into a place with no audience and, just relating to ourselves, could we... find some energy there. And we had hits and misses. Some of it worked out pretty good, some of it was interesting - but it's definitely a different kind of energy. A lot of this stuff is... mad luck. There's a cut in there that goes from "Playing in the Band" - studio version, say - to "Playing in the Band" live - that just happened to be just about identical tempo. That kind of stuff is luck - you can't really rehearse it. There's no way for us to have... We didn't plan continuity from one situation to another, but every once in a while something like that works.

* * *

Garcia: The way this developed was not a result of planning, so much....We started off with all kinds of plans. We had real specific things we were going to do - something scripted, something very tight and formal. That sort of dissolved. After we did the shoot at Marin Vets the whole contour of it started to look different, so we started to look for a different methodology to be able to do what it seemed to call for.

Q: What's Marin Vets?

Garcia: It's a nice, tasty concert hall in Marin County, about five minutes from where we all live... An 1800-2000 seater, small but very nicely articulated so it really sounds beautiful. It really has a good, crisp recording sound.

Q: Is it a theater in the round? I noticed you were all facing each other.

Garcia: No. We just set up that way... 'cause we were addressing ourselves rather than addressing an audience.

Q: Why isn't "Touch of Grey" on [So Far]?

Garcia: We didn't have a workable arrangement of it, really. We tried it...

Q: With the exception of "Touch of Grey," which has a fade ending, all the songs [on In the Dark] are set up the same way they would be live. Was that a conscious effort to get the songs out on an album the way they are live?

Garcia: Not intentionally. Sometimes we let 'em run out. We didn't really plan the ends. [giggle]

Weir: We never do.

Garcia: Y'know, it's us, man! [laughter] ... Some of them sort of trail off, some of them build. They tended to be as idiosyncratic as they are at live shows. The performances were quite different from each other.

* * *

Dell'Amico: You have to find the most talented people, and the place where the machines are, and then set 'em loose. The main thing is the "setting 'em loose" part: telling them that you want them to help you rather than just do what you tell them to do. If you give them time to play, they can come up with great stuff.

Q: Considering most of the concerts go three, four hours, why only 55 minutes? Why not an hour and a half? ...two hours? ...three hours?

Garcia: It really has to do with what we get. If you record five shows and get maybe an hour's worth of good stuff, say...in this case it's something like that, although the ratio is probably steeper. It just really is the stuff that works.

For me, it's a process of recognition. You put stuff together: "These two tunes sorta go together, but it needs something here to make this passage work..." You assemble it, and it starts to look like something... We constructed the shape, kind of the way they do animated films: we constructed the shape that was the soundtrack, and then used that as the basic template for everything else: all the visuals, the live action stuff, the cutaways, and the rest...

The interesting thing about it, methodology-wise, was that we approached a video editing facility as though it were a multitrack audio facility, so we had many levels of images to choose from at any given moment, which is kind of an unusual way to work in video. There were never decisions up until the last edit about what image actually goes where at what moment. That stuff came together toward the end; really, we were assembling layers of possibilities, all on individual machines.

Dell'Amico: Like if you had a track with a kick drum and a track with a snare drum and a track with a guitar, you could have tracks which have different types of visuals and decide later how to mix them.

Garcia: There is no multitrack video; video does not exist in that realm, so it was a matter of kluging a version of that that would deliver that notion.

Dell'Amico: - using a lot of machines.

* * *

Q: Where did you get the vintage film clips? I think we saw Adolf Hitler in there, the KKK...

Garcia: Trotsky... Lenin...

Dell'Amico: We started by coming up with image lists of what we wanted to stick in there. Then we'd come up with places to get it. Associate producer Ann Uzdavinis went out and found all this stuff, and editor Veronica Loza put it together. It comes from the National Archives... all kinds of archival places. You buy it and use it.

A great deal of work went into editing all the cutaway images. First we shot it, and then it took a year, year and a half to substitute visuals: get 'em, try 'em, throw them away, get new ones, work out the special effects.

Q: Was it a conscious effect to get trails on a video?

Garcia: Yeah. Sure.

Dell'Amico: What do you mean by trails? [laughter]

Garcia: You know, man - trails.

Dell'Amico: Oh, that ! That's an easy effect. Just so you know, that's called "image strobe decay" in video. You just push a button and you got it.

Garcia: What we're doing is sort of painting along with the music. You see what you'll see in it, y'know.

Q: Has this wave of success taken you by surprise... the album going platinum so quick?

Weir: Not me. [laughter]

Garcia: Fifteen years ago it would have taken us by surprise, but we sort of crept up on it, really.

Weir: We've been building up to it. We knew we had good songs to record for the last few years, and we finally got around to recording them...

Q: Has success spoiled the Dead?

Garcia & Weir: Yeah. [laughter]

Q: How so?

Weir: He looks pretty rotten to me. Doesn't he to you?

Q: So how has it changed you?

Weir: I was noticing the other night, for instance, that when I'm going through pistachios, the hard-to-open ones - I don't bother with them any more. [laughter] Who's got time?

* * *

Q: What was it like doing the mega-gigs with Dylan?

Garcia: It was fun. Yeah.

Q: Think he enjoyed it?

Garcia: Yeah, he did enjoy it. It's tough to get it out of him, but he did enjoy it.

Q: Why didn't he join in on "Touch of Grey"?

Weir: Sometimes he did. Depended on how it was going.

Q: Did it take more rehearsal than usual?

Garcia: [laughs]

Weir: We rehearsed a lot of stuff...

Garcia: And when we went on the road we didn't have the slightest idea what we were going to do.

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Grateful Dead Hour #41
Week of June 12, 1989
Featuring an interview with Famous Deadhead David Crosby

I have a snapshot in my mind of of New Year's Eve 1986 at the Henry J. Kaiser auditorium, walking into a room backstage and seeing Jerry Garcia and David Crosby engaged in conversation. We almost lost those two guys in '86, but there they were, big as life.

Six months earlier David was in jail and Jerry was in a coma. Two of this generation's most beloved souls found themselves skidding toward heaven, but each made the decision to turn that wheel before it was too late.

While Crosby was in prison I collected greetings from several of his northern California friends in a book and sent it to him. I learned later that he was deeply touched by these messages from these people he had loved and lost during his years of enslavement to cocaine, and when I met him face to face in 1987 Crosby greeted me like an old friend.

And I feel like a friend, even though we didn't meet til recently.

With the Byrds and then with Crosby, Stills and Nash, Crosby's music has always been precious to me. His singing and/or songwriting credits are almost too numerous to mention, including "Mr. Tambourine Man," "Eight Miles High," "Wooden Ships," "Guinnevere," and "Long Time Gone," to name but a few. In the '60s, rock and roll wasn't just music, it was the bulletin board and the grapevine of a generation, and Crosby, Stills and Nash were heroes who gave their fans political and musical inspiration in equally generous measure.

The story turned sour for Crosby in the '80s, as drugs crowded everything else out of the picture and he exhausted the love and patience of the people around him. The quality of his performances suffered, his songwriting output dropped to zero, and even his most loyal friends believed he was as gone as you can get and still have a heartbeat.

Crosby had to go to prison to get clean, but as he wrote in his autobiography, Long Time Gone [by Crosby and Carl Gottlieb. Doubleday, 1988], he doesn't regret a minute of that time because it brought him back to life and music.

Crosby recently finished a tour featuring music from his solo album Oh Yes I Can [A&M 5232, 1989]. He came to the Truth and Fun studios for this interview the night before his show at the Fillmore Auditorium last month. I kept my cool at the time, but I don't mind telling you that David Crosby is one of the musical heroes of my life. What else can I say but "So glad you made it!" -- David Gans

David Crosby: [Paul] Kantner and I and David Freiberg used to live together, down in Venice. I went and started the Byrds with McGuinn and them, and then Paul started the Airplane. And then David got together with those people and started Quicksilver. So I was tapped into each new band that started in San Francisco. And as soon as there was a Grateful Dead, I heard about it. And we had played up here - the Byrds - at the Peppermint Tree. You haven't lived until you've seen us trying to do something like "Chimes of Freedom" with two girls dancing topless on either side of us. "Don't you guys know something with a beat?" [laughter] Total mismatch.

I think I heard about Garcia playing even before that down in Palo Alto, at some little club down there. But as soon as they started playing, we started to hear about them, and then I went to visit 'em when they were still living on Ashbury [in San Francisco]. I liked them right away, because they were totally outrageous and obviously completely crazed. And that was just my style. I remember thinking, God, this kid Weir is too young to be in this band, isn't he? I mean, do you have like a note from his parents or something?

Crosby: That record, If I Could Only Remember My Name... I was just coming off of Deja Vu [Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young], and I had carte blanche. I got to put together exactly whatever the hell I wanted. And I invited the craziest people I knew.

Jerry Garcia is responsible for that record a very great deal. He was there night after night after night after night after night after night after night.

Q: Doing what?

Crosby: Oh, thinking, listening, talking - you know, acting as a friend, saying "Hmmm, man, what if you, how did you, why don't you try a little more, and...." And he would play. He played on a lot of stuff. That record is the only place on record, that I know of, that he and [Jefferson Airplane and later Hot Tuna guitarist] Jorma Kaukonen ever played together. On "Song With No Words." That's one of the first times that [Garcia] did pedal steel too. I think the first time he put it on a record was on Deja Vu, on "Teach Your Children." But he played it on "Laughing" [on If I Could Only Remember My Name...], too. A beautiful, strange thing that he played. Lesh played great on that too. And Joni [Mitchell] sang this one beautiful, little strange thing on it - ooh!

"Cowboy Movie" is Crosbosis mixed with Grateful Dead-itis in perfect fashion. What I like is when it goes to the bridge...

I've done several things with them that got me off. They played a lot on "What Are Their Names?" That was just a jam. I walked out in the room, started playing a lick. Then Jerry comes out in the room, starts playing, and you hear him start to play. Then Neil [Young] comes out in the room and starts to play. Then Phil [Lesh] comes out in the room and starts to play... and then Michael Shrieve, who played drums for Santana, comes in and sits down and starts playing drums. And that was how we made the record.

I had those words that I wrote on an airplane, and I didn't know what to do with them. I was listening to this track and I realized that there's a place where the track goes up and then [claps hands] cuts away and leaves a space, and then it comes back in again. And that space is exactly the length of these words:


I wonder who they are
The men who really run this land
And I wonder why they run it
With such a thoughtless hand
What are their names
And on what streets do they live
I'd like to ride right over this afternoon and give them
A piece of my mind
About peace for mankind
Peace is not an awful lot to ask

Crosby: Oh, man, I couldn't have done it with anybody else. The only time when we ever really got organized was on "The Wall Song." That was pretty organized, 'cause it goes through a lot of changes. And so we learned that and actually played it like an arrangement.

One of the best periods in my life, musically, was a period of time when I was very frustrated about Crosby, Stills and Nash, and it wasn't working. I was living in Mill Valley, and Bobby [Weir] lived in Mill Valley. They were trying to rehearse, and I would go over and drag along my Stratocaster and cause trouble. I would go in and they would be trying to record, even, and I would cause trouble. I would go in and say, "Aah, you guys don't have a real rhythm guitar player."

[laughs] Which endeared me to Bob forever, I'm sure. But I would go in there and, you know, just be crazed and try and involve myself with them, because they were so into all what I think is important about music. They were into the music, you know. They didn't let the peripheral stuff pull 'em away from it. They didn't give a hoot how much money something made; they didn't give a damn what the reviews were; they were not in it for chicks, glory, money, fame; they did not make the "I must be smart - look how many people are listening to me" mistake; they kept intensely focused on music. And I loved that. That was just what I, how I felt about stuff. That was my set of values, and I needed that affirmation very strongly at that point, because I had just had this enormous taste of huge money and crazedness and... I wasn't sure, you know, what was what. I'd been in Hollywood, you know what that's... Hollyweird...

That was when we started playing that eleven that became their song "The Eleven" and became the beginning of my song "Low Down Payment." I didn't even know it was in eleven until they counted it for me. I had no idea. I'd start playing that.. and they would.... "Oh, okay..." [scats a little eleven-beat phrase]... It was all what I loved about music the most.

Q: I always thought Crosby, Stills and Nash should have been a little more willing to open up and play looser things, like from song to song.

Crosby: After the beginning, we didn't trust each other that much. At the beginning we did.

Q: And what happened?

Crosby: Hmm... money, chicks, glory, fame, drugs. Values change, people change... people don't stay the same.

Crosby: The fascinating thing about [the Grateful Dead], I think, aside from the fact that they have always understood.... they came out of the period when folk music still had an impact on them, and they understand about telling the tale. See, they're more concerned with telling the tale than they are with polish. They always have been. They want to make you feel something. But I think the really most innovative thing about the band is... Everybody else thinks in terms of block chords and pedal tones, bass lines, normal kind of structures. These guys have evolved a thing where each guy is playing a running line all the time. There's three of them at a very minimum and then the percussion. That's electronic Dixieland.

In this case you've got three running lines all the time. The keyboard player, traditionally, in the Dead has been the only guy who was tacking it down to reality at any point, you know. But what you've got is Jerry and Phil and Bobby playing these three weaving lines. And it's this incredibly fluid music.

What happens in the best of it is that you submerge your ego and you understand that several people can achieve a telepathic or near-telepathic union playing music and speak with one voice.

I heard a symphony orchestra when I was a little kid, and I was so completely overwhelmed by it that it made a deep imprint on me. The power of music made by the cooperation of musicians - I was only about four or five years old, and it bowled me over. It was like a wave. The power of a symphony orchestra playing in front of me. And I saw all the elbows moving the same time, all the little tweedly-tweets at the same time, all the little little drum things going at the same time, and I said "I get it!" And it's never left me. I'm stuck with it. I love to make music with other human beings.

***

Crosby recently reunited with fellow Byrds Roger McGuinn and Chris Hillman for a handful of concerts. They had so much fun that they're talking about making a record together:

Crosby: [This story] starts off kinda grubby but it winds up good. Some unscrupulous people, and I use the words carefully, got hold of [Byrds co-founder] Michael Clarke. These are the same people that put Gene Clark on the road as The Byrds. I was unhappy about that, but it was marginally valid because at least he was a singer-songwriter and one of the people who started the band. It wasn't good, which was why I wasn't happy about it. It was quite bad, as a matter of fact. But it was marginally valid, in a certain way. You could find a way to justify it.
These same people got hold of Michael, and he had fallen on hard times, and... he did it. They put him on the road as the Byrds.
Well, okay. If it doesn't have Roger McGuinn in it, it's not the Byrds. I don't care who else it's got, including me - if it doesn't have Roger McGuinn in it, it isn't the Byrds. He is the heart and soul of the Byrds - always has been, always will be. There isn't any question about that. I'm not belittling my contribution or Gene's or Christopher's, or even Michael's. Roger is the central issue. It's the way he reads a song. He's the one who took those songs and made 'em feel like that. He has a certain rhythmic feel and a certain way of reading a song. A certain understanding... He's a brilliant guy, you know. He has a genuinely enormous talent.
Then I had this horrible thought and checked it out, and I found out that they were going to try and copyright the name. These sleazeballs.

Q: Had you guys never done that?

Crosby: Roger had held onto it for a while, but had let it slip, and so it was up for grabs. I said, "What if they copyright the name?" And they said, "Aw they wouldn't do that." I said, "I think they're going to. If they have a band on the road, they can do it.

I said, "I don't want that to happen. Then we can't have it. I don't care if I own it at all, but I think it should be in Roger's hands." Christopher agreed with me, and Roger agreed with me, and so I said, "Look, why don't we just beat 'em to the punch?" And they said okay. I was surprised.
But we didn't do it through managers or, you know, third parties. I just said, "Hey look, let's be real. Let's just do it." So we got together.
Here's where it gets good. Okay, the first confession is, I had forgotten how good Roger is. He's brilliant. He's better now than he was then.
The last time I played with Chris, he was a kid. Now he's been through like three or four hit bands -

Q: The Desert Rose Band -

Crosby: Yeah. They're strong. And Chris is strong. He's confident; he knows what the hell he's doing. And we buried the hatchet a long time ago. He's been my friend for a long time, and so has Roger.

And there's a difference in me, too. When we parted company, it was my fault. It wasn't their fault. They threw me out for a reason. I really was being sort of impossible. I wanted to spread my wings. I wanted to be the center of attention. You know, I was jealous of Roger. I was a growing singer-songwriter. I was starting to write really good songs, and I didn't feel that I had the attention and the recognition that I deserved. I was in ego conflict with them. Now I've got nothing to prove. Anybody that doesn't know I can play and sing hasn't been listening. I can now contribute what I was supposed to contribute.

Q: Where did you play?

Crosby: San Diego, San Juan Capistrano, and Ventura. [Los Angeles Times critic Robert] Hilburn, who never says anything nice about anybody except Springsteen, said we were fantastic. But that's not the point. There were other people there who said we were really good, whose opinions matter to me more. Tom Petty came, and sang "Rock and Roll Star" with us and said, "Man, you guys are so good I can't believe it." And he's a real Byrds fan. And he's a great musician, and a really nice guy too. And he wasn't shucking.

Later on, Elliot Roberts [Bob Dylan's manager] told me that Dylan had been there and had been raving about it for days. He snuck in with his hood over his head, brought three kids...

But anyway, the point is we had a great time. So if the managers don't screw it up, and if the record companies don't screw it up - we're all signed to different record companies, and we've all got all these different people with their own agendas - if none of those people screw it up, you'll hear it. It'll be good.

Q: Are you going to make a record?

Crosby: I wouldn't be surprised. I mean, consider this: We have this thing that we do, okay: it starts with the way Roger grasps hold of a song, and his rhythmic feel and his reading of the tune. Then it comes with me being one of the stranger harmony singers of our time, you know. Then it comes with Hillman not knowing how to play bass. He's a mandolin player; he doesn't know bass lick one. He plays a running line. He's playing mandolin three octaves down. [laughter]

Q: That's an interesting approach. Does he know Lesh? [laughter]

Crosby: There's a lot of similarity, in a way. They're musically different people - their conception is different - but the fact is neither one of them knows any bass licks.
Okay, so there is this certain - it's not a formula, but there's a certain set of influences, and we've only ever applied that to one great writer: Bob Dylan. And one Pete Seeger tune ["Turn, Turn, Turn!"]. What happens when you do that to a Randy Newman song?

Q: Wow.

Crosby: Yeah, that's what I said. What happens when you do it to Tracy Chapman, who writes these beautiful, sparse, wonderful songs about real stuff?

Q: ...There are a lot of great writers out there.

Crosby: That's what I was thinking. The idea slays me completely, so... I'm hoping - but it would be easy to go down the tubes in Hollywood, you know.

Q: Is there anything you'd like to say to the Deadheads of America?

Crosby: They must be real perceptive people, man, because they see and love something that's wonderful and genuine and crazed and completely undependable and outrageous and going for the peaks, you know. I figure that if they love it, you know, they're lucky to have something that good to love.

-------------------------------------------------

Grateful Dead Hour #44
Week of July 3, 1989


Once a month Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh comes to the Truth and Fun studios to work on Rex Radio, a program of new and unusual music hosted by Phil and Gary Lambert which airs on KPFA (94.1 FM) here in the San Francisco area at 10pm on the second Monday of each month. So the last time he was here we took a few minutes to talk about what's going on with the Grateful Dead. -- D.G.

Q: How's the recording going?

Lesh: Really well. We're probably going to be finished with it, oh, a couple of years from now. [laughter]

Q: How many songs do you have?

Lesh: Nine, this time.

Q: Are they all going to get on the record?

Lesh: I think so. As far as I know, the plan is to put 'em all on. It's not a record any more - it's a CD, and we can put as much time on there as we can cram in, up to 73 minutes.

Q: So maybe this time the CD will have a lot and the album will have one less?

Lesh: I think that's the way the record business is leaning at this time. They're really pushing CD hard.

Q: If paintings had had to be split into two sides, art would be a different picture entirely . So now we have a chance to present an album as one continuous piece of music.

Lesh: In that sense, each of the recorded mediums has defined the nature of music that's recorded on it. The 78 is good for three minutes or so, and it was mainly used for popular music. When the LP came along, composers even started writing pieces that were 25 minutes long and would fit nicely on the side of an LP.

Q: So now all of Dave Marsh's worst dreams can come true and the Grateful Dead can have a 70-minute song!

Lesh: Yeah, and then maybe we can put him in the music appreciation chair and make him listen to it!

Q: Do you have a favorite tune out of all these?

Lesh: Oh, yeah: "Foolish Heart." I really like that tune; it's really fun to play.

Q: How's "Victim or the Crime" doing?

Lesh: It's actually growing a face of sorts. It actually has turned into something that has harmony and is rather euphonious. It almost sounds too pretty for the subject matter.

Q: I knew you guys would come around to that song.

Lesh: - we would dilute the image [laughs], the message -

Q: That's up to you. I knew that musically it would grow on you.

Lesh: It just doesn't sound as ugly as it used to.

Q: About those trumpet solos Jerry's been playing -

Lesh: What trumpet solos, Dave?

Q: You mean you don't hear them up there?

Lesh: Oh, that! Now everybody - myself, Jerry, Bob, Brent, and the drummers - has sampled sounds available to use, mostly in the space as far as the four front-line guys are concerned. The drummers use sampled sounds throughout the entire show.

Q: We've known about that with the percussion players, but it wasn't until Jerry started playing flute and trumpet solos that the world sort of went "Oh, listen to that - technology!"

Lesh: Whatever, but the fact has been that guitars are not as MIDI compatible as keyboards are, and they're just now becoming playable in terms of the fluency of the response in the MIDI realm. And the bass is still lagging behind. Of course, I have to learn the more or less very different touch required.

Q: So it does require a different technique.

Lesh: Yeah. But it will work.

Q: I understand there are going to be some changes in the policy about camping and other outside-the-facility stuff for the Grateful Dead now. Was that a result of [events this spring in] Irvine? -

Lesh: It's a direct result of three to five years of experience with what's been happening in the camp areas and around the venues where we play. There's entrirely too much trashing going on, too much defecation in people's yards, that sort of thing. This could be the last camping summer, and it probably will be, because I don't see any evidence of people trying to clean it up. Is there?

Q: I don't know. I know that here in Oakland we've put a lot of effort into trying to ease the fears and the tension in the [Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center] neighborhood by having a presence there, but I can't speak for what happens out in the midwest and what happened in Pittsburgh, etc.

Lesh: It seems to be happening everywhere we go, and that really threatens us - in the sense that if it gets any worse this summer there won't be any more camping.

Q: So it sort of boils down to if the camping scene continued, the Grateful Dead scene might not -

Lesh: Well, we won't be allowed to go to places where we want to bring in camping. We might not be allowed to go to some of these places at all. And that sort of cuts down our options as to where we're going to be able to play.

Q: So the idea is that by prohibiting the camping and the vending scene, then the 5000 uninvited followers will -

Lesh: It's a music scene. It's not a camping scene and it's not a vending scene. It's not a party scene, unless you're inside - that's the way we like to think about it. You want to party outside? Stay home - we'll broadcast it. It could be a stranglehold on our touring activity. The message we're trying to send out is, Leave nothing but footprints.

Q: And if you don't have a ticket -

Lesh: Stay home. We'll broadcast it.

Q: Are you planning to broadcast all the shows?

Lesh: No, we plan to make the decision a show at a time. If we go to a city and we're playing there three days, if there's too many people without tickets the first night, we'll broadcast the second two nights. That sort of thing. But it's not going to be policy to broadcast everything.

Q: How's the family?

Lesh: Never better. We're expecting a second child in September.

Q: And that's the reaason there won't be a Grateful Dead tour this fall?

Lesh: There is going to be a Grateful Dead Tour this fall - it's in October.

Q: So you're just taking September off to stay home with Jill -

Lesh: Yes, and the new baby.

Q: Do you know which flavor this baby is going to be?

Lesh: No. We decided not to find out. We like the excitement and the mystery.

Q: Is Graham excited?

Lesh: Yeah. He's already designated one of his trains for the new baby.

Q: How old is Graham?

Lesh: He's two and a half. They'll be two years, nine months apart.

Q: What's the anticipated date?

Lesh: The tenth of September.

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