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Free The Dead Roseland Ballroom

Photo By Dave

Okay - I know I said in my last post that I didn't win tickets to The Dead at one of the three free shows, billed as "Free The Dead", they played at three different venues (Angel Orensanz Center, Gramercy Theatre, and Roseland Ballroom) throughout NYC on 3/30/09 - but when I got up Monday and read my email I got my confirmation from GDTSTOO early that morning. I won a pair of tix for the 11:00 PM Roseland Ballroom show, the last of four performances (if you count Lesh, Weir, and Warren Haynes' appearance on ABC's The View that morning) by members of the Grateful Dead in one day. These shows were like an extension of the old free Haight Ashbury shows the Grateful Dead put together in the Sixties, fourty some-odd years later, and it was my first time seeing The Dead for free; a wonderful gift from The Boys! I'm Grateful to have won these tix and can't wait to see The Dead on the upcoming Spring Tour after seeing this powerful set of music. Warren Haynes jumped out of the Allman Brothers Band frying pan into the Grateful Dead fire after his fifteen night stint at The Beacon Theatre with the ABB, seeming to switch styles seemlessly, and giving us a glimpse of things to come this Spring Tour.

Tom, Dave (me), Jeanette

I got there on time to pick up my free tickets and meet my friends for a few drinks at the Russian piano bar accross 52nd street. The cherry infused vodka got me in the right frame of mind and I headed in for the show. The Dead started off strong with Garcia's Althea - "this place is gettin' hot" - and really never let up through an hour and fifty minute set ending with Not Fade Away - "You know our love will Not Fade Away"! The full set looked like this:

Althea, Cassidy, Uncle Johns Band> Eyes Of The World> St. Stephen> Dark Star> Sugar Magnolia (E)Not Fade Away

Mickey, Billy, Phil, Bobby, Warren

Most of the Jerry songs were sung by the "singer by commitee" method - that is they swiched off on the lead vocals between Warren, Bobby, and Phil - much the same way they did at the Deadheads For Obama shows. They sounded like they're ready to play on this tour and after some rehearsals back in California they'll kick off strong on April 12th in Greensboro, NC. It's just such a big sound with the rhythm section of Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzman, and Phil Lesh. I've missed that! With the core four and Haynes and Jeff Chimenti it really sounds nice. These are guys who know this music and can play and improvise on it. They should make some magic happen on The Dead Spring Tour. It was great to see The Dead in such a small venue and the sponteneity of this gift show from the band made it even sweeter and remeniscent of my Grateful Dead past. How many times did I do one or two Grateful Dead shows and get the itch to do some more? Here are the setlists from the earlier appearances The Dead made that day:

ABC's The View
Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Warren Haynes Acoustic

Friend Of The Devil

Angel Orensanz Center for the Arts
Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Warren Haynes Acoustic

Dire Wolf, Bird Song, Cumberland Blues, Pride Of Cucumunga, Lazy River Road, Casey Jones, Ripple

Blender Theatre @ Gramercy

Playin' In The Band -> Good Lovin' -> The Wheel -> Franklin's Tower -> encore Touch Of Grey

After listening to Downloads of all of these sets I feel that the Roseland Ballroom set was the best sounding of the three. What do you think? Let me know by commenting.

Download Free The Dead shows Here


The Dead To Make Four Appearances In One Day

The Dead, in anticipation of their upcoming Spring Tour, will make four appearances tomorrow throughout the day including an early TV stop on ABC's The View with Whoopi, Barbara, Joy, Elisabeth, and Sherri. The other three shows are all free performances throughout the day that can only be attended by winning tickets from The Grateful Dead through their online lottery system, which I DID NOT win! Oh well I guess I'll have to wait till The Dead Spring Tour 2009 kicks off in April. Early in the day Warren Haynes, fresh off The Allman Brothers Band 15 night Beacon Theatre run, Bob Weir, and Phil Lesh will play an acoustic set at Angel Orensanz Center in Lower Manhattan. Later on they'll be joined by the rest of The Dead (Bill Kreutzman, Mickey Hart, and Jeff Chimenti) for sets at The Gramercy Theatre at 5 PM and Roseland Ballroom at 11 PM. This message appeared on -

IMPORTANT NOTE: IF YOU ARE NOT A LUCKY WINNER WITH TICKETS DO NOT SHOW UP AT THE VENUE - YOU WILL NOT GET IN. NO TICKETS WILL BE AVAILABLE AT THE DOOR IN ANY FASHION. Unless you are one of the lucky winners, you are not getting in or anywhere near the venue. Please respect the wishes of everyone involved with this regard.

I guess I shouldn't try to get in to any of these shows. What do you think?

Bob Weir and Phil Lesh came to town a little early last week to sit in with Warren Haynes and The Allman Brothers Band at their annual Beacon Theatre Run Saturday night 3/28/09. The ABB played with as many special guests as they could on this run to honor founding member Duanne Allman for their 40 year anniversary shows. Weir and Lesh had shared a stage with Duanne a number of times on double bills of The Grateful Dead and ABB at Bill Graham's Fillmore East in the early 1970's as well as some other shared bills by the two bands later on (i.e. Watkins Glen '73). As with most of these Beacon Theatre shows there were multiple guests (besides Weir and Lesh). Here's the setlist from that night -

Little Martha
Done Somebody Wrong
Trouble No More
Rocking Horse (3rd Stone tease>Little Martha tease>Blue Sky tease)
Walk On Guilded Spinters
Who To Believe
Born Under A Bad Sign w/Floyd Miles
Stormy Monday w/ Floyd Miles & Chuck Levell
Come & Go Blues w/ Chuck Levell
Jessica w/ Chuck Levell & Paul Riddle

Set 2 (10:56 > 12:24)

Sugaree w/Bob Weir & Phil Lesh
I Know You Rider w/Bob Weir & Phil Lesh
Franklin's Tower w/Bob Weir & Phil Lesh & Chuck Levell
Black Hearted Woman>
Other One Jam>
Black Hearted Woman
Mountain Jam w/ Chuck Levell

Encore (12:28 > 12:38)

Statesboro Blues

I wasn't at this show (the two shows I were at smoked!) but I have heard mixed reviews of the Grateful Dead members section from friends that were there. So far I haven't been able to find it on Youtube yet to see for myself but I'm sure it still had to be a special moment for Deadhead Allman Fans. If you were there leave a comment and let me know what you thought of it. The Allman Brothers Band were particularly hot on this NYC run. The versatile Warren Haynes will trade in his ABB hat for his Grateful Dead hat as he plays the Jerry Garcia role in the current lineup of The Dead on the upcoming spring tour. See ya there Deadheads...


Allman Brothers Band Rock The Beacon Theatre 3/14/09

This past Saturday night, 3/14/09, I resumed my annual pilgrimage to the Beacon Theatre in NYC to partake in the Allman Brothers Band's yearly residency there. I've been there every year to see the ABB since they've been playing there annually, I think since 1995 or '96 (missing last year -'08 - due to Greg Allman's recovering from complications due to Hepatitis C, causing the band to cancel the run). The Allman Brothers Band never ceases to amaze me at these March Madness shows and this year is no exception! Saturday night left me longing for more and I'll probably find myself down there at least one more night of this run, risking the wrath of my wife. The whole band played with incredible energy driven by the appearance of some great special guests (Randy Brecker, Robert Randolph, Stanley Clarke, and Lenny White from Return To Forever). They also seem to be inspired by the fact that these are their 40 Year Anniversary shows that they've dedicated to their Late Founding Brother Duanne Allman.

In the weeks leading up to the Beacon shows The ABB made it clear that they would be bringing in more musical guests for these shows than ever before. They usually jam with everyone who's anyone in music; but these shows would be extra heavy on the special appearances in honor of Duanne Allman, and they'd like those guests to include as many performers who had played with Papa Duanne as possible. This immediately brought up rumors of lots of musicians most notably the banished Dickey Betts and Duanne's Derek and the Dominoes mate Eric Clapton. Clapton having the double connection to The Allman Brothers Band since he also had Derek Trucks join his band on a tour a few years ago. Clapton's appearance is pretty much set for two days, probably March 27th and 28th, and rumors continue to fly that Betts will play with his old band on March 23rd. The band continues to deny Dickey Betts being on the list of guests but the Allman's fans seem to be willing his appearance to happen. Only time will tell.

So far the guests have included Levon Helm of The Band, Larry Campbell and wife Theresa Williams of Helm's band and Phil Lesh and Friends, Bluesmen Johnny Winter, Taj Mahal and Buddy Guy, Phish members Trey Anastasio and Paige McConell, Boz Scaggs, Randy Brecker, Robert Randolph, Stanley Clarke, Lenny White, Bruce Willis on Harmonica, and members of Los Lobos. Phil Lesh and Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead are rumored to be sitting in later in the run as well as other assorted rumors.

The show I caught on March 14th was really hot! A trio of Warren Haynes, Derek Trucks, and Oteil Burbridge opened up with Duanne Allman's Little Martha to a backdrop of Duanne Allman images behind them. Sweet touch! Greg Allman and the rest of the band came out to join them on rousing renditions of Ain't Waistin' Time No More, Walk On Guilded Splinters, Rocking Horse, Gambler's Roll, Revival, and Woman Across The River. Then they were joined onstage for the set-closing Dreams by Jazz Session Man Randy Brecker on Trumpet and Return To Forever Drummer Lenny White. This was a great version of the Allman Brothers Classic with great jams by Brecker, Haynes, and Derek Trucks interspersed with Greg belting raspy vocals. Great stuff! The second set opened with the typical Melissa duo of Warren on Slide and Greg on Acoustic Guitar. Then they were joined by the next special guest - Robert Randolph - on Steele Pedal Guitar on Turn On Your Lovelight and One Way Out for a collaboration of world class slide guitar players in Randolph and Trucks that really rocked the Beacon Theatre. Adam Nussbaum, a Jazz Drummer who has played with Brecker, also joined in place of Jaimo on these two songs. Then came the high point in the show for me; Randolph and Nussbaum leave the stage and are replaced by Lenny White and Randy Brecker, again, for a great version of Miles Davis' Jazz Classic In A Silent Way and the Dickey Betts instrumental In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed, which led into it's usual Drum Jam with Lenny White still sitting in for Jaimo and really adding alot of energy to the Drums section of the show. This led into the Bass Solo which wound up being a Bass Duet with the one and only Stanley Clarke joining a gushing Oteil Burbridge onstage for a real thrill for all (especially Oteil). The rest of the band could be seen on the side of the stage watching in awe as the two Bass players jammed with one another. Unfortunately Clarke left the stage at this point rather than staying on and interacting with the rest of the band. This was followed up with the end of Elizabeth Reed to end the second set. The Encore of Mountain Jam followed with Warren inserting Led Zeppelin's Dazed and Confused in the middle. This was a great surprise at the end of a night filled with surprises. The only thing that's not surprising is that The Allman Brothers Band can still Rock and that I'll be Rolling back to the Beacon Theatre for more!

Wolfgang's Vault - Exclusive Allman Brothers Band vintage merchandise Wolfgang's Vault now offering full concert downloads!

To watch these Allman Brothers Band at the Beacon Theatre 40th Anniversary Shows on streaming video live and archived through September 30th Go To