Terrapin Tuesdays – This Week’s Guest – Grateful Dean – His Pick – Oakland Coliseum 12/30/1989

Our guest this week is Grateful Dean from gratefuldean.com. His pick is Oakland Coliseum 12/30/1989.
Listen Here: http://bit.ly/terrapin12_30_1989
He had this to say about his favorite Terrapin:
This night has been packed with magic beyond our ability to adequately convey using words… Bertha->Good Lovin, Sugaree started the night off with flashbacks from the 70s. There’s something about a second set Jack Straw that can’t be found in a first set version. The China>Rider was so powerful, clean and pure that it actually caused the air inside of the Oakland Coliseum to begin circulating… The Estimated found Weir in top form and the ensuing jam contained components of everything I like best about The Grateful Dead… The Estimated Jam has me at the edge of mental and psychological tolerance… I feel like I could go Syd Barrett at any time… Jerry with the wah-wah pedal making bubbles out of the boiling grey plasma that used to be my brain… I feel like I’m eating a lozenge made by Duracell… Tastes like I’m sucking on a 9 volt battery… I swear there’s fuckin birds in this arena… They’re flying around in my peripheral vision but disappear as soon as I look directly at them… Everybody around me that I make eye contact with is all pupil, zero iris… I can tell how many of us are close to the edge… The lights seem to make the band look like images from a 3D movie when you don’t wear the glasses… Inside the Estimated Jam existed the sound and possibilities for just about every tune you could imagine out of Estimated and I heard the Other One teased in there too… Maybe later… I heard Dark Star notes out of Phil… Weir dropped some chords from Uncle John’s… Brent is way out there in full blown Brent mode… It’s up to Garcia but he’s just busy as hell staring at his own hands as they continue to stir the cauldron of chaos… A few of us could fall off of the earth at any time…
As Garcia wakes up from the trance he put himself in, he straightens up… Looks around to his right… He has the look I have when I wake up from sleeping in class… There’s a sense of relief in seeing him wake up… It’s like making it to the surface after being underwater almost too long… As Garcia commands the attention of the rest of the band he peers over his glasses and fires off the 5 most identifiable notes that exist within our world… Like the first gasp of air that you’d take as you surface, The opening notes of Terrapin add perfect order where seconds ago existed complete chaos… You can actually feel the energy created when 20,000 people smile simultaneously… The Inspiration of one of the greatest Masterpieces ever composed begins to ooze from Garcia like Psychedelic Syrup would ooze from a Cosmic Maple Tree… Even though I’ve experienced this moment a hundred times, It always seems as fresh and enlightening as it was the first time… The procession moves forward with the story teller in perfect form as I hear sounds and configurations of the acrobatic nature of the music against the absolutely steadfast delivery of the vocal… Every note is totally deliberate with a confidence that transfers itself onto all of us… It’s so loud and so clear up here that I can actually hear the absence of moisture in Garcia’s throat…
As the teller is getting paid off in gold we hold our collective breath for the segment that sends us back under the water again…. As the mystic piece of mayhem turns round and round into this pile of auditory question marks, Garcia reaches in and grabs the string that causes the troubled and descending kite of confusion to abruptly rise and take flight once again… Mickey climbs the percussive ladder of ecstasy hitting everything he owns along the way and making that full Vulcan mode face… Yup, that one… He mercilessly backhands the cymbal that’s suspended on its stand from above, his right, our left… Billy’s eyes are so far back in his head I think he’s actually watching the effects this moment is having on his own brain… He’s chewing the hell out of something…
INSPIRATION!!!!! We’re all moved brightly… As statements just seem vague at last, we collectively flash through pictures of the trials and tribulations that have been overcome to be part of this very moment beginning with the phone call and message on the hotline… The Post Office for money orders and mail orders… The job I left without notice for the 10th time… The parents that want me to be a “normal” son… The 16 hour trip to get here… I’m so high I think for a moment that this could all be happening inside of my mom’s vacuum… I shake it off… Some Rise… Some Fall… Some Climb… Holy Shit I’m here!!! All the stuff that happens to get here… The moments we talk about in the months between these moments are going on RIGHT FUCKIN NOW!!!! I can’t figure out!!! If it’s the end or beginning!!! As the whistle starts screaming The Band goes into the hook that is a staple to all of us… It’s nearly heavy metal as the Power of 6 Super Charged Souls channel the Power of every Force of Nature into the room with feedback screaming like the tires of a racecar on the tarmac… Weir is throwing chords into the stratosphere…
I don’t know what Phil had for dinner but if I had to guess I’d say Dynamite and Lighter Fluid. He’s dropping bombs that shake the reinforced concrete floor we march upon… One leg bent… Right Shoulder higher than the left… Bill and Mickey appear to have 3 arms each… Their hands are a blur and their arms leave trails across their kits as we seem to roll into cartoon land… We understand the Steal Your Face Logo like never before as we’re certain the boiling grey matter of our brains are now crystallized… Half Red… Half Blue… 13 Point Lightning Bolt in between… Our molecules have been completely and totally reorganized… Airto Moreira’s sinister cackling kicks off one of the best drum segments of the year… It’s still getting stranger…
Dead To The Core,
Dean Sottile (pronounced SoTilly)
Grateful Dean on Facebook
You can also watch the whole first set here: http://bit.ly/12_30_89_firstset