No longer Grateful, but hardly deceased, The Dead (a.k.a. Phil Lesh, Bob Weir, Mickey Hart, and Bill Kreutzmann) are hoping to record new music soon.
Since the death of Jerry Garcia in 1995, the surviving members of the Grateful Dead have logged countless miles performing both solo and together in various permutations. The current version of the band includes Gov’t Mule/Allman Brothers Band member Warren Haynes and and keyboardist Jeff Chimenti.
“You have to be able to play (old) Grateful Dead music in order to make new Grateful Dead music,” drummer Mickey Hart tells Billboard. “Right now I think we’re trying to make the canon our own again and make it a really sumptuous feast as opposed to little hors d’oeuvres and stuff. You gotta learn the musical ropeadope and be able to have conversations on an intuitive level with the other musicians, things that just take time.”
Adds singer-guitarist Bob Weir: “It’s an organic kind of situation. We speak a language that no one else speaks. It comes from all those years on the road; if you piled up the time that we’ve spent just on stage together, playing, it’s be years. Relationships develop. Feelings develop that I don’t think can be found any other ways.”
The band, who reunited in 2008 to rally behind Barack Obama, kicked off their latest tour in Greensboro, North Carolina on Easter Sunday. Weir promises that upcoming shows will feature deep cuts from the Dead’s catalog.
Here’s the opening night set list, via Rolling Stone:
Music Never Stopped
Estimated Prophet >
He’s Gone >
Touch of Grey
I Need a Miracle
Shakedown Street >
All Along the Watchtower >
Caution (Do Not Step on the Tracks) >
Cosmic Charlie >
New Potato Caboose >
Help on the Way > Slipknot! > Franklin’s Tower!
Encore: Samson & Delilah