Thursday, November 17, 2005

Band Chatter

There's a brand new addition to the Dead archive. Jonathan Aizen has uploaded a 22-minute 1987 conversation among the band members that, while focusing on the then-newly recorded In the Dark album, is a wide-ranging and interesting discussion. Brent, as the "new guy" conducts the discussion, which, at its most interesting, has Brent asking Garcia how it felt to almost die (Garcia experienced a severe diabetic coma in 1986). It's available as a .shn download here. If your a fan, it's well worth a listen.

My favorite line:
Mydland: [To Jerry] What body part would you consider injuring and to what degree to save the latest master tapes [of In The Dark]?

Garcia: . . . I think I can probably stand to lose a rythym guitarist, possibly a drummer.
Yep. That's about what I would have expected. In other not-so-news, the Sun had an interesting piece on Garcia's Conservative Children during the summer and, surprise, surprise, last month San Francisco named its new amphitheater after Garcia. As for the Sun piece, here's a taste:

Think back to the ringing guitars, the spinners, the patchouli oil and the haze of pot smoke hanging over an arena - the psychedelic country rock of Grateful Dead concerts seem like an unlikely cradle for today's conservative commentators.

And yet, 10 years to the day after Jerry Garcia's death on August 9, 1995, no less than three of Generation X's most high-profile young conservatives remain dedicated Deadheads: Deroy Murdock, Tucker Carlson, and Ann Coulter.

I've never understood what's so surprising about a conservative deadhead. I've gone from being a "put-that-cow-out" Vegan tourhead hippie to a carnivorous conservative lawyer and my love of the band has remained constant throughout. The thing is this: the band wasn't about anything other than the music. And, as far as live music goes, there's never been better. The freepers have more reaction on this most pressing of issues.