As I walked with one of my colleagues from my office in Boston Financial District to Dillons near Fenway, I saw lots of tie die. Many bars and pedicab drivers were playing Dead songs. Fenway has an excellent location smack in the middle of the city so all of the nearby restaurants were filled with Dead Heads. While at Dillons, I enjoyed a cold draft Pacifico, Siracha Honey wings , asparagus, friends and many other "Dead family members".
To the contrary, this time around Donna's vocals were substantially more vibrant. During "Music Never Stopped", we heard lots of "oohs" from her.
While the first set was decent, it was tough to stay energetic with the the heat. It was said to be one of the hottest days of the year at 85-90 ° Fahrenheit. However the music kept our energy flowing; here's my friend Matt and I dancing to Jerry's "Loser".
Unlike Sir Paul McCartney, who I am going to see at Fenway tonight, the Dead is known for avoiding small talk and just jamming. On the other hand, after "Loser", Bobby said " We're going to play something for the kids" and led into " Peggy-O". The reggae-rock feel was very different the jazzy one I heard the last time I hard Bobby play the song with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band at Peach Festival 2015.
My Jewish-Dead Head friend Caitlin's foreshadowing than proved accurate as the band played the famous "Help on the Way"--"Slipknot"---- "Franklin's Tower" progression. With Oteil ripping it on bass, I was reminded of Wanee 2014, when I saw the Allman Brothers play Franklin's Tower with the help of Trey Anastasio.
After a 40ish minute set break, in which I purchased necessary over-priced water and ice cream to overcome the heat, the second set began with "St. Stephen". Just remember the important lesson: "One man gathers what another man spills." on the side is a nice and blurry selfie with my buddy Jordan, who's rocking his LOCKN' shirt.
The highlight of the set, which tends to me of any Dead related set was "Terrapin Station. The lower pitched parts were similar of the Beatles. Unlike the song "Don't Keep Me Wonderin", I was curious if Sir Paul might show up for "Hey Jude" or "Dear Prudence", two Beatles songs the Dead has covered in the past.
As he did at Citifield, John Mayer absolutely killed it, contributing lead vocals and a bit of shredding on guitar on Casey Jones.
We than got a "Black Muddy River"- "U.S Blues" double encore. It was nice to keep the July 4th spirit alive.
|Dov and I entering Gate B!|
|Bobby with his fitting guitar strap|
|Here are Henry and I dancing to "Deal".|
Donna and Oteil contributed nice snippets of vocals to "Going Down the Road Feeling Bad". It made me want them to cover "Seven Turns", a song that Oteil has sung a lot on in recent years. Perhaps one day Dead and Company will play an ABB tune or two!
The second set began with a bang- "Playing in the Band". It's amazing how Bobby can still shout at 68. I could not be more happy when they are started playing "Sugaree". Earlier in the night when they were playing "They Love Each Other", I said those two songs were my favorite Jerry songs!
The next song was great but totally unexpected- "Fire on the Mountain"! This song almost always comes after Scarlet Begonias. Fellow Dead Heads- help me out- how often does this happen?
|A nice shot of Jeff Chimenti, one of two keyboardists, |
along with Bruce Hornsby, that also played at Fare Thee Well.
Thanks to Dov for the photo.
The one thing I would like to see differently is not playing "One More Saturday Night" as an encore every Saturday night they play. While it's a great song, one of my favorite Dead songs, that and Ripple do a get a little too predictable as encores as they play it so much.
Here are some other good photos from the run:
|Billy with Honorary Rhythm Devil Oteil!|
|Dov and I at After Party with Barely Dead |
at House of Blues, dancing to Cumberland Blues!