Tag Archives: grateful dead

San Francisco Giants Celebrated Jerry Garcia Day at AT&T Park

Giants Mascot, Lou Seal and Furthur’s Jeff Pehrson

Have you ever stood in a place larger than life, surrounded by larger than life characters, listening to them talk about an even larger than life character, and found yourself wondering…. How did I get here?  This was my experience standing on the field of AT&T Park in San Francisco on Monday, August 9th, watching members of the Grateful Dead and its extended family pay tribute to Jerry Garcia on the memorial of his passing, 15 years to the day.

Mickey Hart, Bill Walton, Annabelle Garcia and representatives of the Rex Foundation receive a check from the SF Giants

Photos of Jerry flashed on the jumbotron as Bill Walton spoke kind words of tribute, standing with Garcia’s daughter Annabelle on one side, and Mickey Hart to the other.  The Rex Foundation was presented with a check of $40,000 by the San Francisco Giants.  One of the foundation’s members turned to me and smiled as she said, “We are determined not to lose this thing– You’re in charge,” and placed the oversized check against the wall I was leaning on.   Moments later Bob Weir, Phil Lesh and Jeff Pehrson of Furthur were ushered out to the field just steps in front of me to sing the national anthem.  The three men were granted complete silence in the stadium as they belted out an impressively strong anthem, erupting the crowd into an outcry of love and applause. Weir, Lesh and Pehrson high-fived each other and hugged; celebrating a job truly well done.

Cryptical played pre-game atop Cub’s dugout

There was so much genuine joy abuzz in the stadium on this evening, as is often the case when Deadheads get together.  Local San Francisco Dead tribute band ‘Cryptical’ had earlier played a short set atop the Cubs dugout, and Hart and Walton participated in a Rex Foundation pre-party before heading out onto the field.  Entire sections of the stadium were dedicated to Deadheads where Jerry Bobbleheads were given away, and orange kazoos were handed out for a special 7th inning stretch version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” led by Mickey Hart.  Homemade Jerry shirts and signs took over the stadium as tye-dye claddened hippies and Giants fans alike were enjoying the festivities, proving just how deeply San Francisco embraces its Grateful Dead family legacy.

Cubensis To Close out the Days Between at The Waterfront in Marina Del Rey

Special Marina Meldown for Jerry Garcia on August 8th

As the Days Between come to a close, the LA Dead fans have but one more opportunity to get out there and dance and shake their bones to the music of the beloved Jerry Garcia.  Southern California’s premier Grateful Dead Experience, CUBENSIS, will perform the final show of the Day’s Between on Sunday, August 8th at the Waterfront in Marina Del Rey for a special afternoon Marina Meltdown show dedicated to the Grateful Dead’s fallen saint.

An early, all ages show, Sunday’s Cubensis show at the Waterfront will be from 4pm-8pm and is an all ages show.  Tickets are $10.  The Waterfront is holding an event in the parking lot at the same time as the show upstairs so, when you arrive, you’ll have to find alternate parking at one of the city lots next door.  Also, the admittance to the lot is $35 unless you tell them you’re there to see Cubensis, then they’ll let you in without charge for the outdoor event.

UC Santa Cruz Grateful Dead Archive Selects Nicholas Meriwether To Run The Archive

Nicolas Meriwether

Ever since 2008 when the University of California, Santa Cruz announced they were taking over the vast collection of Grateful Dead memorabilia amassed by the band over their 40+ year long strange trip, Deadhead archivists have been patiently waiting to see who would be given the key to wonderland.  On April 7th, UC Santa Cruz announced that Nicholas Meriwether will be the key-master.  UCLA archivist Lance Watsky was also in the running for the position.

Meriwether comes to UC Santa Cruz with a lengthy pedigree.  Meriwether holds a bachelor of arts degree from Princeton University, plus a Masters in Library Science–with a specialization in archives–from the University of South Carolina.

His research on the Grateful Dead, their cultural significance, and their impact on late 20th century society has resulted in a number of publications.

Meriwether is the editor of All Graceful Instruments: The Contexts of the Grateful Dead Phenomenon (Cambridge Scholars Press, 2007), as well as four volumes of Dead Letters: Essays on the Grateful Dead Phenomenon (Dead Letters Press).

“The Grateful Dead Archive at UC Santa Cruz represents an extraordinary collection with immense research value to academics and scholars from a wide range of disciplines—including historians, literary critics, musicologists, and others,” noted Meriwether.

The archive is set to open in 2011 at the newly renovated McHenry Library at UC Santa Cruz.

“The Grateful Dead Archive will be, like the Dead, something much more than it initially appears,” noted longtime Grateful Dead publicist and biographer Dennis McNally. “Just as the band was not merely a music group but an adventure, an odyssey, and a subculture, the Archive will reflect not only the Dead, but that most critical of post-war decades, the ineffable 1960s.”

Grateful Dead Sneak Preview of Crimson, White & Indigo Movie RFK 1989 Performance

Christmas comes early for Deadheads this year.  According to Dead.net, the Grateful Dead will be giving select cities a sneak preview of the movie release of their July 7th, 1989 concert at RFK stadium in Washington, DC.

The full story and venues showing the sneak preview from Dead.net:

“On July 7, 1989 the Grateful Dead got together with some 95,000 close friends at JFK Stadium in Philadelphia. By the end of the day, all involved shared a highly improved outlook on life…Grateful Dead productions is pleased to present Crimson, White & Indigo, the entire full-length theatrical concert experience in fully mastered multi-track audio brilliance…

Don’t miss a sneak preview of the Grateful Dead’s Crimson, White & Indigo: Philadelphia, July 7, 1989 in theatre near you. Be sure to check your local listings for exact show times.

Philadelphia, PA
Ambler Theater

Gloucester, MA
Cape Ann Community Cinema

Rochester, NY
Little Theatre

New York, NY
City Winery
4/15/10, 4/16/10

Pasadena, CA
LAEM Playhouse
4/15/10, 4/17/10, 4/18/10

Los Angeles, CA
LAEM Sunset
4/15/10, 4/17/10, 4/18/10

Encino, CA
LAEM Town Center
4/15/10, 4/17/10, 4/18/10

Portland, ME
Patriot Cinemas: Nickelodeon Cinema
4/15/10, 4/18/10

Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Cinema Paradiso

Newport, RI
Jane Pickens Theatre

St. Pete’s Beach, FL
Beach Theatre

Deland, FL.
Athens Theatre
4/16/10, 4/17/10

Washington, D.C.
Atlas Performing Arts Center
4/16/10, 4/19/10

Lake Worth, FL
Lake Worth Playhouse

Key West, FL
Tropic Cinema

Shreveport, LA
Robinson Film Center

Wellfleet, MA
Wellfleet Harbor Actor’s Theatre

Bellingham, WA
Pickford Film Center

Cleveland, OH
Cedar Lee Theatre

Three Rivers, MI
Riviera Theatre

Oberlin, OH
Apollo Theatre

Telluride, CO
Michael D. Palm Theatre

Palm Beach, FL
Mos’ Art Theater

Nate LaPointe Band featuring Bobby Womack Horns on New Release

Nate LaPointe Band

The news is out and Shakedown News is loving it.  LA’s hottest rising star of Americana Roots Rock, the Nate LaPointe Band has put the signed, sealed and delivered stamp of approval of their second album, Speaking of It.  The album isn’t due out to the general public until April 25th but we’ve  got a sneak preview copy in our grubby little mitts and all I can say is “YEAH!”

When Nate LaPointe informed Shakedown News that the new album was done and the much anticipated “sophomore” release was in the box, the questions started pouring out.  What’s new?  New songs, new band additions and an old school recording style.

When the NLB went into the studio, over a year ago, LaPointe’s plan was to record an album LIVE to 2″ analog tape.  Then record that tape to vinyl records.  WHAT?  Who owns a record player anymore?  As LaPointe puts it, “I wanted to record an album the way they used to do it so it would sound like it’s supposed to sound.  We did a limited run of the vinyl for nostalgic reasons.”

Nate LaPointe and CC Sherman of NLB Photo by Morris Caraway

Little known fact.  LaPointe’s family used to own Top Notch Records, a record store in Laramie, WY.  Vinyl is in the man’s blood.

So, Speaking of It will be out April 25.  Highlights of the new album are many.  First off, the addition of CeCe Sherman on vocals brings that drop of estrogen that the former quartet of males needed.  Her soulful voice brings out emotions that you may not even know you had.  As Shakedown News’ Environmental Editor, Shawna Newbern, puts it, “CeCe’s voice makes me cry every time I hear it.  She’s amazing.”

Next up is the addition of the soulful sounds of the Bobby Womack horn section.  LaPointe, who frequently joins Womack and his band on stage as Womack’s guitar guy, called upon the Womack horns to add some depth and flavor to his rootsy sound.  “I wanted to create some interesting dynamics and depth.  I think the horns did just that,” said LaPointe.

LaPointe called upon the sound engineering talents of John Baffa at TV Tray Studios.  Baffa’s resume includes being Lou Reed’s tour sound engineer.  LaPointe took the producing reins himself.

Right out of the box,  NLB hits you with the southern rockin’ “Here I Come Again.”  The horns in “Dragonfly” will quickly move track three to one of your favorites.  Sherman’s vocals on her tune “Cold Hearted Man” will make you a CeCe fan.  LaPointe’s covers of Kenny Rogers “Just Dropped In” and Paul Simon’s “Hearts and Bones” are two great tunes that fit well into the album and are performed brilliantly by NLB.  Personal favorite that I can’t get out of my head is “Gun Store” with it’s melodic harmonies and dynamic tempo changes.  Not to mention the amazing guitar solo!

LaPointe’s gift is his guitar licks and boy do you get your fair share on Speaking Of It. The guitar leads on many of the tracks delight your auditory canal with his amazing finger work.  LaPointe picks his notes wisely as he navigates through long guitar leads that leave the listener satisfied.

As always the bass licks from Ivan Johnson, the keys and harmonica of his father Dave Johnson and the sweet rhythms from Chris Payne on drums complete the NLB package.  I’d give this new album a +1 rating over the first release from NLB.  This album pushes their abilities and shows LaPointe’s songwriting ability has taken a turn to the deeper realm allowing the listener to turn an introspective glance at the lyrics.  A real improvement over the, relatively, superficial first release four years ago.

Shakedown News Rates Speaking of It 4.75 out of 5!  I give nothing a 5, but this one is close…don’t skip a single track!

Cubensis By The Beach

Nate LaPointe, Special Guest Barney Doyle (Mickey Hart Band) and Craig Marshall

Nate LaPointe, Special Guest Barney Doyle (Mickey Hart Band) and Craig Marshall

Here at Shakedown News we love our Grateful Dead music.  No one in So. Cal does it better than Cubensis.  After 22 years, they’re still going strong and this weekend, they’re doing it by the beach!

Cubensis will perform at the Lighthouse in Hermosa Beach, CA.  Oh kids!  Southern California’s PREMIER and longest running Grateful Dead experience is performing an afternoon show from 4-8pm.  This little place by the beach is one of the oldest bars in Hermosa  Beach.  Musicians like Dizzy Gilespy and Charlie Parker used to tear up the place back in the day.  Cubensis will, no doubt, do the same.  Get there early, this is a FREE show and you could be waiting in line if you get there late.

A teaser for you…

The Zone Performs Darkside of the Moon with Wizard of Oz

The Zone and Spidergawd at TRIP 10/1/09

We’ve all done it…just some of us deny the strangeness of it….synced up Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd with the Wizard of Oz movie.  You don’t have to believe in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny or Jesus.  You don’t need to be under the influence of psychoactive drugs.  You just need to open your mind to the possibility that it does work…and there you are.

Zone performs Dark Side of the Moon @ Sainte Rocke in Redondo Beach, CA

Zone performs Dark Side of the Moon @ Sainte Rocke in Redondo Beach, CA

Now, Thursday night in Santa Monica, CA at a place, ironically, called TRIP, the ZONE will play live the Dark Side of the Moon album LIVE while they play The Wizard of Oz on the screen behind them.  A true experience in live entertainment.  I’ve seen them do this once before and it was really cool.  Forget the fact that the Zone performs the album excellently, the way they get the timing down to sync with the movie was flawless last time.  Best $7.00 you’ll spend this week on entertainment.  Following their Dark Side of the Moon/Wizard set, The Zone will fill the rest of the night with covers from Phish, the Beatles and many other jamband favorites.

Spidergawd performs at The Cellar in Long Beach, CA

Spidergawd performs at The Cellar in Long Beach, CA

Opening for the Zone will be local Americana Rock band, Spidergawd.  Taking their influences from the Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan, The Band among others, Spidergawd will mix familiar sounding originals in with the hits from the hippie generation into their show.  Featuring Charlie Hornsby (Bruce Hornsby’s cousin) on keys, Spidergawd is just a fun band to go listen to over a couple of beers.  Fun music you want to hear.

Festival 8…Phishing in the Desert

Jamband, Phish has announced they are coming to Southern California in October…Halloween to be exact.  It’s going to be called “Festival 8” and if it’s certain to be one heck of a party in Indio, CA at the Empire Polo Club.  This is the same location used by the Coachella Music Festival.  The dates are 10/30, 10/31 and 11/1.

This announcement has got the hippies of Southern California in a frenzy.  Phish, who all but broke up 5 years ago, just finished their Summer tour to leave the folks on the West Coast shunned.  The closest Phish will got to the LA area before October was an early August appearance at Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountanview, CA…basically San Francisco…making the Indio show the show they’ve been hoping for.  Making it even more special, Phish will perform 8 sets over the three day festival including a tradition they started in 1994’s Halloween’s performance of the Beatles’ White Album.  Since then, Halloween Phish shows have always been them performing another band’s album in it’s entirety.

Tickets for Festival 8 went on sale Monday, July 27 at 10 a.m. Pacific Time for $199 + $1 WaterWheel Donation (plus applicable service fees).  Tickets are available at http://places.musictoday.com/festival8. This includes entry for all 3 days into the event area. Car Camping is available for an additional $15.  Gates will open for the event at Noon on Thursday, October 29. This show WILL SELL OUT so get your tickets early.

Visit official Festival 8 website at www.phish.com/festival8.  There’s a plethora of information at your disposal to answer question you might have. Travel package information is available at valleymusictravel.com.

Phish’s new album, Joy, will be released on September 8th.

I Love Rothbury Stew

Keller WIlliams

Keller WIlliams

If I told you that for the Fourth of July next year, you should go to central Michigan for four days, you’d likely call me crazy. I’d call me crazy, but nun the less, that’s what I did and I’ll never be the same again. I attended the Rothbury Music Festival.

In a giant pot, put in a heaping helping of The Dead, String Cheese Incident, Keller Williams, The Black Crowes, and Willie Nelson. Then slice up some Railroad Earth, STS9, Ani DeFranco, Yonder Mountain String Band, Toots & The Maytals and Damian Marley & NAS. Finish it all off with a big dollop of Bob Dylan serve it up with some Disco Biscuits and garnished with 20 other great bands and you’ve got yourself a Rothbury Stew. Yes, Varuka, the Rothburies do taste like Rothburies.

After four days of gorging myself on Rothbury Stew (vegan, of course), I reflect on some of the fantastic flavors that were in my bowl. The appetizer to this wonderful feast was the arduous task of getting in and setting up camp. Picture giant green field where horses roam about and large trees line the edges…that’s the campground. So large you needed a shirpa or even better a Rothbury taxi to get around. More on that later. The Ranch Arena stage offered the first helping of stew, Keller Willams style. Keller’s playful original jams and original takes on familiar covers, makes Keller an excellent start of the weekend. The set went on for 90 minutes or so culminating with a visit on stage from some old friends, String Cheese Incident, minus Michael Kang and Bill Nershi. This was indeed an incident.

Mike rocks the lead for Lotus

Mike rocks the lead for Lotus

I’ve always been a fan of the pairing and got a chance to get Keller’s thoughts on playing with SCI after the show, “They’re (SCI) fantastic, old friends. I feel real comfortable with those guys. There’s a whole slew of songs that we don’t have to rehearse even if we haven’t played together for a year and we just jam it out and it works,” said Williams. When asked about Rothbury Music Fest Williams said, “It’s a real special thing they’ve got going on here.”

Following Keller came the first surprise of the weekend, a band called Lotus. Full of amazing extended jams and the guitar work of Mike Rempel, Lotus certainly got my dancin’ feet moving and I’m looking forward to hearing a lot more from them. Disco Biscuits closed out the Ranch Arena stage the first night and if you’ve never had Biscuits after midnight, you’re missing out on some high energy trippy jams that will twist your soul in ways you’ve never imagined possible. Day one was short but certainly sweet.

Morning Yoga at Rothbury

Morning Yoga at Rothbury

If you’re an early riser, Rothbury offers morning yoga every morning at 10:30 am. If you made the Disco Biscuits show, you didn’t make yoga on Friday. With a festival of 35,000 people, 4 stages and countless musical acts and workshops, you can’t make everything. Choices had to be made and they were tough. Friday brought the fans Martin Sexton, G. Love & Special Sauce, Flogging Molly, Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley & NAS and another new band to check out, Broken Social Scene. I missed them but Tim Carbone, fiddle player of Railroad Earth commented, “I just had my mind blown by Broken Social Scene.” Must check those guys out. My choice was the Odeum Stage for the day, as it offered G. Love, Marley and culminated with String Cheese Incident.
Marley, with rapper NAS, brought the noise and the funk, reggae style. A wonderful blend of rap and reggae with a real social message. Still carrying the torch he father Bob Marley passed on to his youngest son (Damian was 2 when his father passed away in 1980), Marley stirred the stew pot with cries for peace and one love. After the show he even took time to take photos backstage with many of the folks hanging about, present company included. What a nice guy. NAS was just as friendly.

NAS teamed up with Jr. Gong to bring the ONE LOVE!

NAS teamed up with Jr. Gong to bring the ONE LOVE!

Damian "Jr. Gong" Marley rocks the Main Stage at Rothbury

Damian "Jr. Gong" Marley rocks the Main Stage at Rothbury

Shawna Newbern, Damian Marley, Myself and NAS backstage after their Rothbury set

Shawna Newbern, Damian Marley, Myself and NAS backstage after their Rothbury set

Friday night was about to turn into an incident. After a 2 year hiatus, SCI came back together for one show…Rothbury! And the crowd couldn’t have been happier. There’s nothing like a String Cheese Show. The blending of bluegrass jams with psychedelic rock sounds and long extended jams just whips the crowd into a creamy froth. They pulled out no stops. An early first set “Miss Browns Tea House” and a late “This Must Be The Place” followed by a “Rollover” with teases of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” just sealed the set off nicely. Second set got going with “Outside Inside” into “Desert Dawn” with electric glowing hula hoopers on platforms and acrobats on giant ribbons hanging from above the stage. What next giant beach balls…YEP! But first, fire dancers. The set continued and oddly the beach balls got larger and larger until a giant red one, bigger than a VW Beatle came bouncing out from back stage. It was an incident for sure. They closed with “Texas” and then the encore featured Keller Williams on “Best Feeling” and Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground.” The show ended with “Restless Wind” which was exactly how I felt. A thrilled crowd, with smiles wider than the Grand Canyon left the main stage, satisfied that they’d made the right choice to come to Michigan. On to STS9 for some late night high energy electronica.

String Cheese Incident at Rothbury 7/3/09

String Cheese Incident at Rothbury 7/3/09

Michael Kang of SCI

Michael Kang of SCI

The thing about Rothbury is it takes a good 30 min to go from the front gate to the main stage. In addition they provide many distractions, but none a distracting as Sherwood Forest. By day, a mere grove of trees about 200 yards or so wide. By night, a psychedelic light show and visual trip through a colorful array of things that catch the eye. Spinning blacklight sculptures and a path of “reclaimed art” which included recycled material as well as things the artists found in the forest like pine cones, twigs and the like. Not to mention the Oasis Bar and the multitude of hammocks for resting your weary bones. You must pass through here to get “home.” It’s hard to leave once you enter.

Sherwood Forest

Sherwood Forest

The Rothbury Taxi. Now this is an amazing service they provide. Golf carts, painted up as black and yellow checkered cabs, would take you anywhere in the festival (outside the main gates) you’d like to go for $5.00/person. Each cab could hold 5 people safely, 9 if you really work at it. That being said, a reasonable full load would net the cabbie $25.00 plus tips which according to one festival goer could be paid in beer, food or other items. “I tipped my cab a cold beer,” he said. You can’t do that in New York City. If you’re out there in the back country campground, those guys could save your calves after 4 days. They’ll be waiting for you outside the main gate when you need them. As will the seemingly all night “Shakedown Street” where you could indulge the little consumer in you by purchasing anything from a vegan smoothie for breakfast to a hat or t-shirt and just about everything in between. It seems that Rothbury has found a way to organize what used to happen magically on it’s own on a Grateful Dead lot. Outside was certainly a drop in the bucket compared to the vendors lining the inside of the festival grounds. A flea market with live music, every stage’s had it’s fair collection of things to attract your eyes and empty your wallet. That being said they were all reasonably priced and a real good collection of folks dedicated to the green movement with their products. Toyota was there representing their hybrid cars as well as American Spririt cigarettes promoting their new organic cigarette. Don’t shoot the messenger, if you’re gonna smoke, at lease smoke organic, right?

Saturday was a day to look forward to as a nation, the Fourth of July (insert firework sounds here). The day our nation celebrates the claiming of a country for our own from the British who didn’t own it in the first place but stole it from an indigenous people who’d been here for thousands of years prior to us even realizing it existed. Nevertheless, we drink beer and blow stuff up to celebrate the afore mentioned accomplishment. And so we did. Saturday’s line-up was another killer day of music.

Bob Weir of The Dead

Bob Weir of The Dead

Underground Orchestra was an early favorite featuring Viking of Long Beach’s Delta Nove on bass guitar. Other highlights from the day were Railroad Earth, Son Volt, Zappa Plays Zappa, Jackie Greene, John Butler, Les Claypool and the Black Crowes. Chris Robinson and company delivered and excellent set of Crowes music. The show everyone was looking forward to though, was The Dead. A Dead show on the Fourth of July is as American as hot dogs…wait, no those are German…as apple pie, wait, no, also German…as waving the American flag. And wave that flag they did…the freak flag flew wide and high.

Wave that Flag...wave it wide and high!

Wave that Flag...wave it wide and high!

This was the one and only Dead show for the Summer. After and extensive Spring tour, the “core four,” Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Bill Kreutzman and Mickey Hart came back out for one more show with Warren Haynes (Allman Bros. Band, Gov’t Mule) and Jeff Chimenti (Ratdog) to round out the 6 piece psychedelic rock band. True to form, they came out of the box strong with a crowd favorite, Sugar Magnolia. The set reads like a “Best of” or “Greatest Hits” album. Eyes of the World into Estimated Prophet. The California love was given. On to a vintage “Loose Lucy” then a crowd favorite “Friend of the Devil.” Warren Haynes delivery of the Van Morrison song, “Into The Mystic” was a true first set highlight. A “Help>Slip>Frankiln’s Tower” ender to the first set and the crowd was ready for the fireworks, both visual and auditory, that would come second set.

Bob Weir and the Dead visual screen

Bob Weir and the Dead visual screen

Set two opened with a usual closer, “One More Saturday Night.” A personal favorite, “Shakedown Street” went into a “China Cat>I Know You Rider” which then delivered us all into “Drums and Space.” All wrapped up into one giant ball of musical greatness. “Viola Lee Blues” and “Morning Dew” were followed by “Throwing Stones” a nice mix of old classic Dead in Viola to newer Dead with Stones. Bob Weir gave us all what we’d waited for all show for the second set closer…”Sunshine Daydream,” the ending of “Sugar Magnolia.”

It was fireworks time. Encoring with the obvious choice, “US Blues” the pyrotechnics came in the form of beautiful fireworks display over the stage as the Dead played on. They finished out the night with an emotional “Not Fade Away” and assured us all they “know our love won’t fade away.” The crowd continued on singing as the band left the stage. With tears of joy in their eyes, the masses moved toward Umphrey’s McGee for late night. There were other choices including STS9 or the Tripoli stage with EOTO featuring Jason and Travis from String Cheese Incident but for me, Umphrey’s is a good call. The boys from Chicago are great and worth seeing whenever possible.

US BLUES Fireworks...4th of July!

US BLUES Fireworks...4th of July!

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday. Time to kick back and enjoy something more chill for the final day. After three days of walking and walking and dancing and walking and dancing and dancing and walking…well, you get the point…I needed to sit and listen. Good thing the Odeon had the cure for what ailed me. Toots and the Maytals, Yonder Mountain String Band, Willie Nelson & Family and Bob Dylan. But over on Ranch Arena was Gov’t Mule and Sherwood had Ani DeFranco and Grace Potter and the Nocturnals. What to do. Bones, they needed rested. Willie Nelson…I love that guy. With the IRS, DEA and other government agencies out to get him, Willie’s still out there giving us the goods. “On the Road Again” always pleases. As does his cover of “City of New Orleans.” He busted out a new tune, or at least new to me, “Superman.”

Too many pain pills too much pot
Tryin to be something that I’m not
Superman Superman
Tryin to do more than I can
I ain’t Superman

A personal anthem of sorts for Willie, I really liked it. On to the man, the myth and the legend…ok, the other man/myth/legend, Bob Dylan.

Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

The lights dim, the announcer says “Ladies and Gentlemen, Columbia recording artist, Mr. Bob Dylan.” Dylan, who has spent the last decade it seems, behind his stage piano, comes out and performs “Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat” on guitar! This is a great ending to a great weekend. Then he plays “Señor (Tales Of Yankee Power)” on guitar as well. Bob then discarded that unwieldy piece of lumber for his comfy keys for a truly unique version of “Tangled Up In Blue.” Only Bob could do what he did to that song and get away with it. It was fantastic…cuz it was Bob. “Rollin’ And Tumblin’”, “Spirit On The Water” and a smokin’ “High Water” followed. “’Til I Fell In Love With You” brought Bob to center stage with his harmonica and “Po’ Boy” gave us more of Bob’s harp playing. A personal favorite of the evening was next with “Highway 61 Revisited.” Although slightly different than usual, it still delivered. “Ballad Of A Thin Man” led us into a fantastic version of “Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again.” “Nettie Moore” and “Thunder On The Mountain” rolled us all into the likely closer, “Like A Rolling Stone.” A crowd pleasing end to the show. Bob encored with “Jolene”, “All Along the Watchtower” and “Blowin’ in the Wind” which crossed the “T”’s, dotted the “I”’s, frosted the cupcake and placed with ever so delicate care, the cherry on top of the sundae that was Sunday. If you needed seconds or thirds, Umphrey’s McGee were doing an unscheduled late night on Ranch Arena for those who had just a bit more in them. When they began to do rock n’ roll Mozart, I took off to bid a fond farewell to Sherwood Forest and the festival grounds I’d come to call home for the last four days.

Departure was imminent. A good night’s sleep and then it’s back, “On the Road Again” as Willie would say. “Like a band of gypsies we go down the highway…” Some off to All Good Fest on the East coast, but most back to the normal lives, having been touched by the fairy of good times, good music and a little bit of social consciousness for four days. We rocked, we rolled, we tripped the light fandango. Hopefully everyone took away from the festival something positive. Whether it was constant reminder of how to live green and take care of the environment we live in or that they now love a brand new band they’ve never heard before…they take with them a message that we all hope they’ll share…Rothburies taste great!