"If you tell the Truth, you don't have to remember anything"
-Mark Twain
"You realize, of course, that everything I say is horseshit." -Kurt Vonnegut

Saturday, September 8, 2012


On this date in 1973, the Grateful Dead played their second show of their fall tour at Nassau Coliseum. It was their forth gig in the new Coliseum, because the building had just opened a year beforehand. The proximity to New York City made it a regular venue for the band between 1979 and 1994.
Download a soundboard copy of the show HERE and HERE.
The Dead had just finished recording "Wake of the Flood." At this show they premiered two new songs; "Let Me Sing Your Blues Away" and "Weather Report Suite" in all three parts. "Let me Sing" was the only song that Keith Godchaux penned for the Grateful Dead. "Weather Report" was the first epic song that Bobby wrote, because "Other One" and "Playin'" developed into epic jams. He wrote the song in three parts and compiled them into one big song. In a way he did this same thing when he went running through the Wally Heider studio with the coda that Hunter had just penned for "Sugar Magnolia."
The show opens up with not only "Bertha" but extreme level problems. The first verse, you essentially can only hear Phil's pumping baseline. Then Bobby appears in the mix followed by Keith and Billy, and right in time for the solo, Jerry's guitar. Also note that this is the first time the band encores with "Stella Blue." They only encored with this song twice.
Towards the middle of the set, Bobby debuts the complete "WRS." The "Prelude" was played in jams starting in 72 and "Let it Grow" was debuted the night before. Bobby hasn't settled into the vocals of "Part 1" yet and so each word is pronounced correctly and he jumps the gun on "Just like a song that was born to soar the sky" line, singing it twice. As the music transforms into "Let it Grow" the structure of the song is dictated by the scales that Garcia runs throughout the song. I wish that one time Bobby would have giving a nod to Garcia's playing on the song and "Listen to the thunder shout, He is, He is, He is, he is."
I don't know if it's ever been pointed out but this triage isn't in order. "Let it Grow" is the voice of God giving order to the world and facilitating the ability to create. "Weather Report" is man creating food and continuing life. I guess that is why the band was inclided to separated "Weather Report" from "Let it Grow."
After the Bobby started to play the triage again with Ratdog, The Dead, and Furthur, every time I went to a show or three, the next night he would play "WRS." It was madding for me. I would say, "Tell Bobby, I'm not coming so he plays 'Weather Report'" I would say to my friends. Then the first concert I went to after my son was born, I finally caught one. Maybe my luck had finally run out. Maybe it was my son's blessing. Maybe it was the "angels dancing on the pin."
I: Bertha, My Uncle, Sugaree, BIODTL, Jed, LL Rain, BE Woman, Straw, Row Jimmy, WRS, Let It Grow, Eyes, China Doll
II: Greatest, Ramble On, Big River, Let Me Sing, China Cat, Rider, El Paso, He's Gone, Truckin', NFA, GDTRFB, NFA E: Stella, Saturday Night

Happy wedding day to Phil and Jessica. Thank you for letting me share the celebration with you.

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