Saw Dead and Co for the first time last night…it was very “meh”.

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1,883
Mickey Hart is 78.

Bill Kreutzmann is 76.

Bob Weir (the young one in the Grateful Dead) is 74.

Of course the tempos are slower. Drumming is a very physical thing. Do you expect a 78 year old sprinter to run like a 24 year old?

I’m glad they’re still playing for people.

True, but it seems that it's Bob dictating the slower tempos. The Billy and the Kids shows last year were a lot higher energy than D&C stuff I've heard
 

Dubious

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2,221
Dead and Co has been rocky... I thought the first tour was iffy but had highlights.. then it sort of kicked in and I realy enjoyed alot of the runs. Yes it was slower but it was also deeply funky and groovey, the interplay with Chimetti in particualr was really really strong. I have zero interest in Mayer's music but he stepped to the plate and more than delivered.

Then the silver sky came out and his tone shifted to the strattier thing, the tempos got even SLOWER... and the spacey **** seemed to be less and less frequent. I havent found a full show from this tour yet but the set previews from the other day were not strong.
 

strumminsix

Member
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4,597
This.

My understanding is Bob is counting off the tempos. It was neat to hear Jay Lane on some shows last Fall as he was a bit more on top and straight ahead which I felt helped the slow tempos but...still. Too slow.

Why I gravitate to Joe Russo's Almost Dead. Tempos and the improv are stellar. And can get many-a-show from nugs.net for free.
JRAD is awesome! Have listened to many of their shows!!!

"Heard" it's not just Bobby, but also the drummers... Rumor is that it's harder and more physically demanding... But again, rumors...
 

rollyfoster

Silver Supporting Member
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18,019
Mickey Hart is 78.

Bill Kreutzmann is 76.

Bob Weir (the young one in the Grateful Dead) is 74.

Of course the tempos are slower. Drumming is a very physical thing. Do you expect a 78 year old sprinter to run like a 24 year old?

I’m glad they’re still playing for people.

The tempo is dictated by Bob. Oteil talked about it in a recent interview. He didn’t give a reason for it but directly addressed the topic and said Bob wants to play at these tempos intentionally, starting as far back as Ratdog.

The old guys play their asses off in the drums segments so I wouldn’t put the blame on them.

Listen to a recent shakedown street at 1.5x speed. Its actually not that bad!
 

rollyfoster

Silver Supporting Member
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18,019
This.

My understanding is Bob is counting off the tempos. It was neat to hear Jay Lane on some shows last Fall as he was a bit more on top and straight ahead which I felt helped the slow tempos but...still. Too slow.

Why I gravitate to Joe Russo's Almost Dead. Tempos and the improv are stellar. And can get many-a-show from nugs.net for free.

I agree Jay is better suited for the slow stuff. I don’t think having 2 drummers playing this slow is helping anything, either. They could barely keep it together playing normal speeds a lot of the time.
 

Route234

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8,966
The Silver Sky IS his sig model. Was the tone better when he switched to the Super Eagle? Is that what you mean?

View attachment 628210

That's been his primary guitar for the Dead gigs pretty much since the start in 2015. It was a very intentional decision, as he was going for a very different tone/vibe than his solo material. Trying to separate church & state.

I've seen a lot of pics of him using a Silver Sky over these first few shows of this tour and was surprised by that.

Anyway.... I've seen Dead and Co. twice. Once at the beginning... very first run in 2015... and then once not long before Covid shut down the world... maybe summer 2019? Never thought his tone was thin. He actually sounded huge... especially the second time... when he was clearly more comfortable in this role.

The Super Eagle II was also a signature model from PRS for Mayer and it preceded the Silver Sky. Personally there is no question in my mind that he sounds a lot better on the Eagle II than the Silver Sky. His tone is thin now and hes not playing as well either. I think the band honestly is dialing it in a lot more than they used to. I dont like the rhythm section as much and they really lack a good singer. Weir and the drummers are all hitting a wall where they are just noticeably older and inconsistent. Its still a really good band worth seeing though IMO. Not nearly as good as the first few years of Dead and Co.

 

massacre

Gold Supporting Member
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5,158
The Dead have always been this way. Not every show was amazing, but some of them were really something. But they just kept on playing their shows anyways.
 

sleeperaxe

Silver Supporting Member
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778
Even when the original Dead was going strong, they would vary the tempos a bit, especially across different eras. Listen to the St. Stephen from Live/Dead and then listen to the St. Stephen from Cornell. The energy is not the same. Some may prefer the slower, more groovy St. Stephens, but not me. I like the loud heavy ones.

Likewise, listen to a Deal from 1989, and then listen to one from 1972. The 72 versions pale in comparison. Again, the energy is not there.

Just my opinion, obviously. Many people may prefer the slower, arguably technically superior, versions.
 

Urobouros

Double Platinum Member
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That was, and presumably still is, part of the ethos. I've only watched some of the shows streaming but they've generally been good to very good - Mayer especially and to some degree I anticipated his participation might bring more consistency than with Jerry where it really was a Jackson pollack distribution of horrible to amazing. I only saw the Dead once and it was a musical train wreck. Live on a tightrope and sometimes you fall off.
Some of the inconsistency during Jerry's time was substance-related but a lot was just the band not clicking. It's impossible to capture magic in a bottle every night regardless who's on stage
 

HesNot

Silver Supporting Member
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2,658
Some of the inconsistency during Jerry's time was substance-related but a lot was just the band not clicking. It's impossible to capture magic in a bottle every night regardless who's on stage

I know that when I saw them Jerry was not exactly match fit - a couple years before his passing. I admire his playing, always have. I was not really pointing the finger at Jerry although as the band leader (even if he didn't want to be) and lead guitar player his personal off nights had a disproportionate impact.

Fair points on clicking, at least on what I know which is admittedly through articles and the multi episode documentary, the Dead intentionally left a lot open in anticipation of the nights where it really clicked resulting in a greater performance. I agree every band has on and off nights. Of bands I've seen many times over an extended period of years - Rush, REM and Lyle Lovett I think top the list in terms of sample size - there were better nights than others but the relative delta between a great show and an average one was still fairly small. The Dead, as I understand it, shot for a higher delta on the upside which risks a higher delta on the down. Not a knock, improvisational music in general has a greater delta somewhat by design. I believe Jerry more or less says as much in the documentary.

But there are those who've listened to probably thousands of shows who could certainly have a different perspective.
 

charley

Gold Supporting Member
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3,715
I hear a lot of folks complain about the tempo being slow. Those people never saw the Dead in the early 80’s when things just crawled!

I happen to live in GD country, and those guys are always gigging, being active, and keeping busy. A few weeks ago I was waiting in line at the pharmacy next to Phil Lesh….even after all these years I still get a kick out of stuff like that! They are very inclusive of the local musicians, and as a result we have a great local music scene. Good for them. I hope to still be doing what I love in my 70’s, and if people pay to see me, well I’ll consider it a grand success.
 

Creighton

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2,149
I saw them once in the summer of 2016 at Alpine Valley and had the opposite experience. Thought the energy and crowd was great and the playing was inspired. It was the anniversary of Jerry's last show with the Grateful Dead so for an encore they played an impromptu Knockin On Heavens Door and Mayer's extended solo was jaw dropping. I literally teared up, it was that powerful. The live clips I've heard since then sounded great as well.
 

Urobouros

Double Platinum Member
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1,436
I know that when I saw them Jerry was not exactly match fit - a couple years before his passing. I admire his playing, always have. I was not really pointing the finger at Jerry although as the band leader (even if he didn't want to be) and lead guitar player his personal off nights had a disproportionate impact.

Fair points on clicking, at least on what I know which is admittedly through articles and the multi episode documentary, the Dead intentionally left a lot open in anticipation of the nights where it really clicked resulting in a greater performance. I agree every band has on and off nights. Of bands I've seen many times over an extended period of years - Rush, REM and Lyle Lovett I think top the list in terms of sample size - there were better nights than others but the relative delta between a great show and an average one was still fairly small. The Dead, as I understand it, shot for a higher delta on the upside which risks a higher delta on the down. Not a knock, improvisational music in general has a greater delta somewhat by design. I believe Jerry more or less says as much in the documentary.

But there are those who've listened to probably thousands of shows who could certainly have a different perspective.
I think you're spot on that the Dead aimed higher & hence had a steeper drop off between the good, the bad & the ugly.
 

Fred McMurray

Member
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1,241
Bobby writes cool tunes, plays some intricate guitar, and I've even seen him snatch olive samples from the antipasti bar at Whole Foods. What's not to like? Sorry the show tempo was lethargic. Throw those guys some kale juice and 5-hr Energy shots....
 
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1,883
They don't seem to land quite right for me. At least not consistently but I can see why their fans are so passionate. Good stuff!

Definitely can be both the best and worst jam band of all time:roll

I liked how Kreutzmann posted himself warming up by streaming the disco biscuits before the D&C tour opener
 




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