Today begins the week of tribute to our fallen hero, Jerry Garcia. It was 69 years ago today that the earth was blessed with this most amazing musical gift and for the entire week we’ll be honoring his legacy. To start, I thought it fitting to revisit the “Playing In the Band” from 11.18.1972 at the Hofheinz Pavilion in Houston, TX. Felt by many to be among the best versions, this 25 minute journey is the capstone on the song’s breakout year. The jam takes a hint from the Interstellar Coltrane-Rashid Ali book, quickly becoming a sonic stew with Jerry’s guitar lines carving strokes of color through your mind. Happy Birthday, old friend!
“In the great forest of music, you, the listener, explore and wander between the trees, until by happy accident you stumble upon a forest glade. There in a beautiful clearing in the woods spread with verdant grass in the sunlight, you stand in awe as the birds sing. Walking carefully toward the center of the clearing you notice an isolated group of delicate small flowers radiant in their perfection and perfect in their radiance. Those flowers, so fragile and insubstantial, so manifest and yet so vulnerable, are the Grateful Dead.” – Jerry Garcia
MP3: “Playing In the Band” (11.18.72)
Stream the show via Archive.org here.