The Dead Speak!


Bob Weir & Phil Lesh :: 12.31.08 :: S.F.
By Susan Weiand
On October 20, 2008, The Dead performed together for the first time in four years at "Change Rocks," a Barack Obama benefit show held in Pennsylvania (JamBase review). The four principles sat down with director Danny Clinch to talk about their music, fans, history and politics.

The extensive group interview is below or you can view it here.


Bob: We have some unfinished business. It has been awhile, we've all been off in our own directions. Everybody has a whole new bag of tricks; we all have the body of material that we worked up over the years. We have a little mind meld going here--it would be a sin to let that just wither and die.

Phil: A mind meld is a terrible thing to waste.

Mickey: It's just the right time to do this while we're all healthy and we feel the way we do. It's just one of those things that came around.

Bill: The reason I'm going out on tour is I know there are a whole lot of Deadheads out there that would love to hear us play again, and that to me is a really good thing to do, plus what Bobby just said…I wanna play for the folks again.

Mickey: Once it's in your blood, come on.

Bill: I mean yeah, you gotta play.

Mickey: Music is what we do and we do it together really well and it seemed like the right time. We kind of cleaned out our closets and came back for the right reasons to play together.

Bob: I think all of us are playing a little less and listening a little more. This is something that happens to musicians as they mature but it's happened to us and we're benefitting mildly from it.

Mickey: Well, the rest of it is going to be fulfilled in the music--that's really where it's all at. It comes right down to the experience on stage, and I look forward to bringing the best possible version of me to the stage and I'm sure everyone else is going to do the same, so it can be really exciting, a lot of fun.

Bill: I get goose bumps just talking about it, just thinking of the possibilities.


Bob: In the last 14 years since Jerry checked out, I've evolved, we've all evolved. We still have our brotherhood and so we still react. We can still hear each other think, we can still intuit each other's moves and stuff like that, but there are many, many more surprises in store that each of us has for one another. That's a delight you know--you get that surprise and it spurs you, it kicks you up and straightens your back up a little. It's fun.

Mickey: It's kinda like a reinvention of our music. That's what we've done over the years--we've grown personally and as a group. In coming together like this, it's a real thrill to see the evolution and this journey that we are all on, and it's really very fortunate that we can enjoy ourselves at this time of our lives. Like Bob said, this is the most fun that we can ever have.

Phil: I'm pretty much on the same page as these guys. I've been working with my own band now for almost 10 years and the perspectives of other musicians that have come through my band have helped evolve my appreciation for the music in a way that makes me want to see what's going to happen when we get back together. A lot of it is curiosity on my part; it's the question mark that's really pulling me in, what's gonna happen and the fact that we cannot predict what's going to happen.

Bill: No, there's no prediction, but I can guarantee it's going to be new music. I can guarantee that.

Bob: The surprises are going to come thick and fast because we'll be free and we'll get freer and freer with each other and with what we are doing individually. The stuff we've picked over the last few years when we haven't been playing with each other is going to start coming out and I can't wait to see what comes of that.

Phil: Yeah, when you walk out onstage the possibilities are infinite.


Mickey: Improvisation is built out of trust, love, and time in the groove.

Bob: And intuition.

Bill: And listening really closely.

Mickey: And conversation. You need to have something to say and someone else has to be able to come back and counter that. Then they go with it or take off and you have to give people space to do what they're supposed to do, and like Bill said, listen really deep.

Phil: Listen more than you play really.

Mickey: Yeah, it's about listening.

Bob: And if you're hung up for something to say, then you sit back and sandbag it for a while and listen to everybody else.

Bill: Because something's coming your way.

Phil: Something's gonna come up.

Mickey: And that's where the trust comes in.

Bob: We've finally learned this, and I think taking a little time off has actually helped us with that. I'll sit back now. I'm going to listen to these guys and see where that takes me. And so far every time I've done that, it's taken me somewhere new.


Phil: For me they kind of melt together into an alloy--that's what Grateful Dead music is. When you can't see where the pieces are, it's all one seamless whole really. Even when we're playing a blues tune, not all of us are playing blues music all the way through that tune. Other elements come in there and make an appearance in the strictest genres like blues or even reggae. So to me, the magic and the wonder of it all is the way that all these different music styles flow together so you don't necessarily identify them as the genres that they come from.

Bob: When I was a kid, like 8 or 9 years old, my brother taught me how to tune a radio and that was it for me. I knew I wasn't going to be a fireman or an Indian chief…I was going to be a musician. I was all over that dial and I'd listen to classical stations, jazz stations, R&B stations, country stations, the rock and roll stations. I listened to everything and I couldn't get enough of any of it--I'm sure it was like that for these other guys. The [San Francisco] Bay Area was a great place for that because there were so many different cultural aspects. We listened to it all. I remember when we were riding all together in a car to or from a gig or to rehearsal and we'd be hammering all the buttons on the radio all the way there and back. We listened to all of it and we loved all of it.

Phil: And it sank in. All of that music--not so much the individual songs or the...

Mickey: Sensibilities.

Phil: Yeah, exactly.

Mickey: Like Bob said, the Bay area was a spawning ground for a lot of different music that came to America, like the Indian influence. Phil gave me a record back in '67 that changed my life, by an Indian drummer, Alla Rakha. We brought that into the band, we studied that, and we started doing these revolutions, rhythmic things and Phil brought his influences, so did Bobby.

Bill: Phil turned me onto John Coltrane, living together in Haight-Ashbury, and I said, ‘God, you can do that on the drums?' I mean once I heard that music…that was it.

Phil: That's the thing about music, it's infinite. There is no end to it. There's no back wall, there's no ceiling, there's no floor, it's infinite and therefore you can still explore it until the day that you die and you'll never find the end of it. And that to me is the most magical thing about it. You can just keep finding new thrills, new toys, new ideas.


Bob: [The overriding message is] the song.

Phil: At the moment that we're playing the song, it would be the song. In the extended, the medium is the message…that's the way I see it. The message that I've seen go out from our band, and from other rock bands from our era, is that this is what you can do if you agree to cooperate completely, fully without ego and without worrying about who's going to get credit or get paid more. This is what you can achieve. This is what cooperation can achieve. This is what Americans can achieve, together. It's really a metaphor for our society and how we can make it better by working together.

Bill: I think that our audience shows that really clearly. The audience is one of the most unique audiences there is and the peacefulness and love that they express for one another is probably the highest thing there is. One message that I hear really clearly from Deadheads is that we miss you guys, we wish you guys were playing again--and that really makes you want to do it for one thing, you give that expression.

Bob: It's going to be a dream come true for a lot of Deadheads. There are roughly a million of them out there, a dream come true for most of them, if we can live up to it and I think we can.

Mickey: I see the energy that the band is capable of raising in the group, and also personally, and then you take that energy out into the world and do some good with it, and that's the thing that the Grateful Dead does. At the end of the line that's one of the things I can really get behind because it's a force for good and we we're putting the good into it and they're getting it--and if they can take it and do yet again another good deed, that's for me what the Grateful Dead is about.


Mickey: Every place that we play good is a great place, it doesn't matter where it is. I think the criteria is of course a place that can make you feel good and everything. The [Madison Square] Garden is so special because it's suspended on big cables so the Deadheads now know how to make the whole Garden sway. At first it's a little unsettling but then you get used to it and you go with the rhythm,

Phil: That place literally rocks. It literally rocks.

Bob: I remember the first time we experienced that phenomenon. I went right into earthquake volcano mode.

Bill: Red Rocks is great to play--it sounds so wonderful there.

Bob: It sounds great.


Bob: You know it used to be that we were kind of hamstrung by the transits of the heavenly bodies. If it was astrologically a bad night for us, or if there was some predictor that made it so that it was going to be a bad night for us, we went down. Over the years we got more consistent at being able to play the ball as it lies.

Phil: Without even knowing where it lies.

Bob: Without working at it. It's just practice makes perfect, even if you don't know what you're practicing. Over the years we got to tune ourselves to what the night was giving us. It's like in football--you take what they're going to give you. Or in any sport, you take what they're giving you and we're a team, we play that way. We play together and whatever the nights giving us, we go there.

Mickey: You can look at the Grateful Dead as a tuning system, not only for ourselves but for people to become in tune with us and that makes for a lot of power. I mean, that shows solidarity.

Bill: And creates community.

Mickey: That's a really important part of it.

Phil: That's the goal. To fuse that greater community together.

Mickey: Community between us and community between them and then community between them and us…both. This is a real interesting dichotomy.

Phil: And then community between them and us and the wider world.

Bill: The Mobius strip between the audience and us. There's no beginning or end, you know?

Phil: When it's really happening we're all the same.

Bob: You know, when it's really happening, there is a guy up there singing. For instance, if we're doing a song he's telling a story. But if I'm singing and I'm telling a story, I'm not there. I might look like me but I'm not, I'm the guy in the song…the character. I'm just telling my story and the story of that character. My job is to get out of the way and let that character tell its story. When we're on, and we're on more than not these days, we're all that guy. We're all his different faces, different incarnations and we're all telling that story.


Bill: [We have] three or four generations of fans.

Phil: In the shows that I've been playing in the past five years or so, there are more and more young people showing up. It's interesting because they're all too young, or they seem to be too young, to have heard the Grateful Dead with Jerry, so somehow they found out about this music. It's touched them in some way and they're coming to see what it's all about. I'm personally very glad that we're going to be able to get back together and give a great The Dead experience, from us.

Bob: My theory all along, or for the longest time now, has been that they're kindred spirits. They're like us; they're people who require a little adventure in their lives. Therefore they require a little adventure in their music, and we're nothing, if not all about that. So it's a rite of passage for them to discover us and through us they discover jazz and improvisational music and they'll discover life that way. And these are our folks.

Mickey: Remember there would be no "us" if it wasn't for them. I mean, you can't just go out and play for an empty arena.

Bob: Even though we have played some of our best music to smaller crowds.

Mickey: There used to be more of us than them!


Bob: I can hear him.

Phil: He's all over, he's all through the music.

Bob: I can hear his harmonic overtone structure and all that kind of stuff. I can't hear individual notes anymore but often times when we were playing I couldn't hear the individual notes anyway, if the sound wasn't good, but I could hear his harmonic structure and know what he was up to and I can still hear that. And I can also feel now just as much as ever that telepathic, that intuitive. I can feel him, ‘No don't go there, yea go there, no, no don't go there, go there, yea go there' and I either do it or don't, just like I always did.

Bill: You got a guy on each shoulder.

Phil: "No, I don't want to go there Jerry."

Bob: "Not tonight."

Phil: So yea, his presence will never diminish for us.

Bob: Couldn't possibly.

Mickey: This music was born with that kind of nuance. He brought a nuance to it, besides the obvious melody and so fourth, inner workings and how it all flowed. It's inherent in the music now because that's the way it is. We can't hear the individual notes, like Bob said. It's all of that other stuff, the weave of it all.

Phil: That's the spirit.

Mickey: It's the spirit thing too, yeah.

Bob: At the risk of sounding like abnormal psychology…yeah Jerry is still there. I can hear him, you can hear him, you can hear him.

Phil: It's an incontrovertible fact. He is still with us.

Bob: What I really miss most were the jokes backstage, the humor backstage. That also was a huge factor in our longevity--we kept each other entertained.

Mickey: Oh yeah, it was a big laugh. A very funny guy, his laugh was too.


Bob: I miss a lot of the analog sound because digital is much, much thinner. I could show you, playing the same material at the same volume at a distance of 50 feet through the same system. Analog source and digital source are the same material, it's really abundantly clear which one holds together and which one doesn't. That said, if you're clever in how you use digital, you can overcome a lot of hurdles.

Bill: We're all internet freaks.

Phil: I know I spend a lot of time on the net but, since we don't make studio records anymore, we haven't had an occasion to be dealing with that aspect of music distribution agenda. We do have a download series, that's coming out from Rhino [Records], of older shows. So in the future I'm sure that we're going to be offering some of these tour shows for download depending on how good they are. And so you know, we're trying to be with it.

Bob: It's been a long dream of ours to digitize our entire vault but it's going to be very costly and labor intensive, and I don't know how realistic it is. If we can get around to it we probably should, so that anybody can have any show or song from any show.


Phil: Well, our country is in a pretty serious mess and has been even before this whole economic situation. One of the things that Grateful Dead music tried to bring, and tried to convey to everyone we play to, is hope for the future, hope and joy in life and a feeling of infinite possibility. It was just something that we felt that we wanted to do also because the campaign that Barack Obama is running is not so much a campaign, or even a movement, as it is a community. We are all about community and we're all about trying to get people to work together.

Bob: I also see it as our last and best hope to regain democracy in this country because what we have now is essentially not democracy, it is plutocracy. Plutocracy is government of the people by the elite, for the elite, and if you look at the situation in Washington and most state capitals, that's exactly what we have. That's not what the founding fathers had in mind. It's not what we purport to be exporting to the rest of the world. We're being a little two-faced about this and I see this as an opportunity to reestablish democracy and I think it's worth it even if you have idiots voting. I think it's still worth it.

Phil: I think it's important no matter who you vote for. As far as I'm concerned. voting in this country, or in any democracy, is not a privilege…it's a duty.

Mickey: Yeah, well these are amazing times and there are great scares out there. Senator Obama is the right man at the right time, as I see it, and perhaps a great statesman that's come along very much in the mold of Abraham Lincoln, a young man with a vision and a lot of magic, a lot of power and his views on some of the most critical issues, like climate change which is perhaps the largest overriding issue of our day, are visionary and very powerful. He has the smarts, he has the ability and I think he has the trust of a lot of people.

Bob: He'll gain the trust of more of them.

Mickey: He's a great man, there's a lot of hope with him.

Phil: It's been a long time since we've seen it.

Bill: What really turned me on about him was I read his second book and the way he wrote, and the way he spoke, was so human and so personal.


Bill: I would love to be the greenest tour possible; I would love to emphasize that aspect in any possible way. My view now is that I'm going totally green. I put solar panels all over my place in Hawaii and I'm doing everything I can to get off the grid. I know that our country and our world would benefit from being green. That's my biggest change.

Bob: I'm into that as well. I've got solar panels and a couple hybrids in the garage.

Bill: It also affects the music because you're doing good for the whole world. Yeah, if you feel good you play better. If I'm not having a great night or I'm feeling bad, I'm not going to play that good. At least I think I'm not playing that good. But it's much better to feel good and play good.

Bob: All the buses are going to use bio-diesel so we'll be doing that. We're going to be looking into it extensively because there are several of us who are really keen on this. Phil: I've heard rumors of some new venues that are being constructed now that have more solar power and have more sustainable energy resources so that they're not drawing as much power from the grid. I don't know where they are but it would be interesting to try to see if we can play places like that.

Bob: We've also taken the step to becoming somewhat politically oriented. We're older guys and it's coming on us to exhibit a little leadership in regards to the green issues and I think we will just have to step up and bite the bit and do it.

[Published on: 2/11/09]

Take full advantage of all JamBase has to offer by signing up for an account!

You'll receive

show alerts

when your favorite artists announce shows, be eligible to enter contests for

free tickets

, gain the ability to

share your personalized live music calendar

and much more. Join JamBase!



michaeljackson Wed 2/11/2009 01:43PM
Show -10 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
WarmCarl Wed 2/11/2009 01:50PM
Show -18 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
moephishH2O starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 01:50PM
+5 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


Fingers crossed a Eugene show(s) get added to the tour this summer...

bob sacamano Wed 2/11/2009 01:53PM
+4 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

bob sacamano

I will have fun michael j'son

Miguel starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 02:06PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

this makes so excited for the summer!

phishspread-aholic starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 02:08PM
+5 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


great article. cant wait for gboro!!!

TheTro Wed 2/11/2009 02:08PM
+11 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

a mind meld is a terrible thing to waste, good point phil...

pornofunk starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 02:15PM
+13 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


yeah regaurdless of the ticket prices, i love these guys.....

reuben25 Wed 2/11/2009 02:31PM
+11 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


whats the deal with the prices they short on social security?

Adironman6 Wed 2/11/2009 02:43PM
+9 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

wow they talk about everything but screwing loyal fans over on ticket prices.

RambleOnShelbyRose Wed 2/11/2009 02:53PM
+14 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


how much would you like to smoke a duber with those fellas?

GratefulHokie Wed 2/11/2009 02:58PM
+5 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


/\/\Right on! Here's to snagging some last minute tix on Craigs for a somewhat decent price :D

PickinKind Wed 2/11/2009 02:59PM
+8 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


i wish i had the money to see them this summer. seriously, i would go if i could just afford a ticket. thats a shame and im sure that many other deadheads are gonna miss out on this one for the same reason. oh well, i'll just let the bootleggers do their job

TheACDCBag Wed 2/11/2009 03:01PM
+10 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


breckenridgejam Wed 2/11/2009 03:06PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


You know who else has some unfinished business? Starts with a PH!

O1Roggae Wed 2/11/2009 03:06PM
+7 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


great read, I still think that the dead need to play All good, Rothbury and Mtn Jam this summer, they owe to those who live way too far from the venues they are playing and the $$$ issue. I would rather see them at a festival as well because I don't have to be in a damn seat or get a shitty lawn view, and the freedom that occurs with a festival is perfect for the Dead. Please play at least one fest this summer, because imho this spring tour is uber weaksauce

O1Roggae Wed 2/11/2009 03:07PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


Ill go see the dead at allstate if anyone has an extra for under 100 bucks but I highly doubt anyone would sell it for that cheap

shoffer Wed 2/11/2009 03:10PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Please play Bonnaroo, Please play everywhere.

stealin Wed 2/11/2009 03:37PM
-2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Quit Bitching $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ Its time to get back on the train, everybody.

musicscool starstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 03:51PM
+8 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


I also think they should play Mtn Jam and hope they play the vibes where they belong! I can only afford one show but that's gonna be the heat! Could only dream of a Dead/Phish festival, some people may not like that idea but it would be unreal.

Shakes Mellow starstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 04:02PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Shakes Mellow

i think they will be at roo.. im half-expecting it anyway.. ill be in greensboro.. wow what a great interview.. this article brought me to tears. The Dead Live ON

77 starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 04:03PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

great read, although too short..... as there are some ideas that briefly appear, which i would like to further explore in their minds <><>

Shakes Mellow starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 04:04PM
-2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Shakes Mellow

use your deadicative spirit and focus on saving dough and try to get to a show. these guys still need to make a living, especially in this day n age. sorry,, but deal with it...

RxStoner Wed 2/11/2009 04:04PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


Mountain Jam is gonna be sick this year. Sunday Headliner????????????? THE DEAD

PooDolla Wed 2/11/2009 04:15PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


They were going to charge people $20 to read that article.

Primus4209 Wed 2/11/2009 04:26PM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


hell yes The Dead at allstate arena!!! Hopefully the The Dead plays Rothbury!!!! Like everyone wants them too!!!

SpreadRed87 Wed 2/11/2009 04:37PM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


this article is the shit! i love how they talk about improv and how its more listening than playing...deep shit!haha but ROTHBURY is a must!! play it!! play it!!!

thedrugsdontwork starstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 04:54PM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


I can assure you that with those ticket prices, I will not be attending a single show. Jerry must be rolling over in his grave. I mean, these guys are obviously loaded, why would they need to charge $100+ for some of these shows. That is just lame, in my book. I've lost alot of respect for these men.

M0Er0N starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 05:30PM
+4 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

They say nothing about the ticketmaster/ticketsnow scam.

after getting hosed by ticketsnow aka ticketmaster I started a website with important info on who to call or write in congress.....

brooklynite84 Wed 2/11/2009 05:53PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

I can only hope they'll sign up for the ROO, I mean the list just got released and we still got loads of time for more bands to sign on, especially since these ticket prices were way too high, I'm sure they'll do a summer run anyway and hopefully learn from all the angry fans and make the tix cheaper...

discocham starstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 06:01PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


I seriously doubt they sign on for Roo....Roth is another story. If they were gonna play roo it would have been announced with the intial lineup imo

deadhead926 starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 06:08PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

I'd pay any price to see these guys ;) SEE YA IN DENVER!!!!! WOOHOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!

musicalearth Wed 2/11/2009 06:18PM
-1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Yawn...not that thrilled about seeing the Dead this summer. I love GD music - but this is just 'meh' to me.

They will be at Rothbury - mark my words.

petewootton starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 06:26PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


Great to read this banter --- love it. They will have a good ol' time on tour together, once again. :)

Kaleidoscope Eyes Wed 2/11/2009 06:30PM
-2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Its all a bunch of Fuckin Monkey Shit

Deadphishbiscuits Wed 2/11/2009 06:56PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


stoked to see the boys in buffalo. unfortunatly due to the price of tickets and some money i owe john law wont be able to catch more than that for now...good article, good times to be had and great fuckin music. a good show to one and all...enjoy

eternityinstantly starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 07:14PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


pleeease play rothbury :) and red rocks :)

stoops Wed 2/11/2009 07:18PM
Show -6 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
sweetdee starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 08:43PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


please please please announce some more shows soon-ie July 4 weekend in a magical forest :)

jldawg67 starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 08:46PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Ya, come to Eu-gene! The Hult Ctr is warm, willing n waiting!!!!!!!

terrarium_fusilage starstarstarstarstar Wed 2/11/2009 09:07PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


awesome... just awesome. I'm not seeing them this spring, spent my money on Phish, but will definately catch them once i can!

hayden4 Wed 2/11/2009 10:42PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

make the SHERWOOD FOREST come alive again with the DEAD!!!!!!!.............dont forget PANIC.............

D-Line Thu 2/12/2009 12:45AM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

i used to care what the members of the dead used to say , not so much anymore, if they really wanted to do it for the "fans" and the "deadheads" billy, why so pricey? heres a thought throw a free festival, old school style, wow! whens was the last time you ever heard of a free festival people?

D-Line Thu 2/12/2009 12:47AM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

i mean if you do 20-25 shows, whats the big deal with just one? right? for the fans? the deadheads?

Ernie57 starstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 01:10AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

I just WILL NOT pay $100 to sit in the upper decks of a hockey arena to see them. I am insulted that they agreed to charge so much for even the crappy seats, it shows that the one topic they failed to discuss in the interview is the paycheck. I guess they still have expensive habits that the sheep need to pay for.I just am so disappointed in how greedy they really are...."community" now that's a good one.....

RothburyWithCheese starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 03:22AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


^^^^dude tickets arent 100 for upper deck, dont exaggerate^^^^

also dont complain about the prices. If tix were 40 dollars people would be bitching because they couldnt get a ticket because they sold out so fast. For me it isnt the fact that the tix were 100 bucks each---its the cost of getting there, getting a hotel room, etc. if I were to live in a city that the Dead were playing I wouldnt have any problem paying 100 bucks a ticket.

‹^› ‹(•¿•)› ‹^› {¬¿¬} Thu 2/12/2009 03:50AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

‹^› ‹(•¿•)› ‹^›      {¬¿¬}

sounds like the same stuff they said last time.

rp1guy Thu 2/12/2009 04:47AM
+4 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


Ironic yet appropriate that they took the "Grateful" out of their name.

panicpanicpanic! starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 05:19AM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


"Bob: When I was a kid, like 8 or 9 years old, my brother taught me how to tune a radio and that was it for me. I knew I wasn't going to be a fireman or an Indian chief"

haha, Indian chief??? the world would not be the same if Bobby has become an Indian chief.

onemanband starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 06:06AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

they're obviously not doing this tour for the money...

which is why we should all find a way in.

it's funny that springsteen gets shit about his scalped ticket prices, but upper deck dead seats are selling for over $200 - 300% markup... which is why i woke up early on a saturday morning to wait in the box office line, u should've done the same if you really wanted to be there.

oh yeah- 2 extra tickets to Albany 4/17....

BGsteveBG Thu 2/12/2009 07:42AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


How 'new' is this Q&A, if they are referring to "Senator" Obama?

Also, please play at Roo, because I'm already paying for that ticket and I cant afford to pay for another ticket. Thanks.

8aPeach Thu 2/12/2009 07:45AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Hmmm...Strange....I'm staring at the handbill pinned to my cubical wall and apparetnly they dont even know the correct date of the Obama show. It was Monday, Oct 13th, not the 20th.

mfgoof star Thu 2/12/2009 08:16AM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

This Q&A is all pulled from those Dead videos that were released in the last month or two. Re-hashed talk. Great talk but lame to be brought up as "The Dead Speak"

gregboyer Thu 2/12/2009 08:28AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

I saw The Dead in 2004 at Bonnaroo and it wasn't even the best part of the weekend. There just isn't the same energy without Jerry-all 13 Grateful Dead shows I went to blow away what they are now. If it were really for the fans I would have respect for these guys but $100 tickets is bullshit. There are good festivals that cost less.If they were added to Mtn. Jam that would be cool but I'm more excited about ABB. And Phish at Deer Creek-$50 and worth it.

spreadhead4life starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 08:53AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


ATHENS, GA pleaaaase! Not only one of the greatest music cities in the US but I assure you a big home for dead heads! Also, I cant think of a better way to redeem the '09 Bonnaroo lineup then a true dead experience!!

futhepharmer Thu 2/12/2009 09:18AM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


they priced out all the fun people. ha-ha-, have fun suckers!

NICU971 starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 09:25AM
Show -3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
Greatwaves Thu 2/12/2009 09:54AM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


yes it is a bit frustrating that the price of a dead ticket is the same as Allgood, wow, for shitty seats as well... they better be awesome shows, because if they suck ive lost it for the Dead, Phils set at rothbury last year was eh mediocre at best, panic and dmb had way more energy... that being said im sure there will be many 20 tickets floating around the lots at these shows, i just dont see 5,ooo people paying 100 bucks a ticket , somehow or another this whole ticket scam is gonna blow up in the artists faces when they play a show for half an arena,talk about being dead

Brew102 starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 10:28AM
-1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

After reading that interview, I finally broke down and bought a ticket. $133 for a nose-bleed seat. I hate to say it, but I'd probably pay more.

Floyd the Pimpanzee starstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 10:50AM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Floyd the Pimpanzee

That was a good read. Thanks Jambase

vikingmike Thu 2/12/2009 11:01AM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

If their so happy to be playing then why are they charging $95 for a friggin' ticket. None of them can be short on cash after all these years. I never paid $95 when jerry was alive, so why should i now.

Ernie57 star Thu 2/12/2009 11:09AM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Nice insightful article with plenty of new information from new sources.

Kind of like the new music these guys are selling for $100 ticket (Don't forget your service and convenience fees kiddies)

What a joke. For a lot of you, this is your "Dead experience"

It all died with Garcia and you can't go back.

CaptainTrips101 Thu 2/12/2009 11:11AM
Show -6 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
CaptainTrips101 Thu 2/12/2009 11:21AM
Show -6 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
Ernie57 star Thu 2/12/2009 11:53AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

I see you abide by the rules of the board, Einstein.

Time to grow up, son.

Not worth wasting the energy to retort.

Scottf43 Thu 2/12/2009 12:25PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

It's all about the music, it has nothing to do with the money. just look at our tix prices, they're so kind, bro.,

vikingmike Thu 2/12/2009 12:46PM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Hey, capt. trips. What's with all the anger and hostility. Why don't you just respect people's choice to like who they want. It's people like you that ruin the vibe for the rest of us. take a chill pill angry hippie and smoke some herb.

futhepharmer Thu 2/12/2009 02:10PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


yeah trips...what's with the name calling?

you out yourself as a juvenile with your hatred and anger. Yeah, thats who I want to go to a show with...all the young idiots who missed out on the better days and now will pay whatever price to see their heroes. You do realize that because your all buying Dead tickets, they will never go below $100 dollars again. Nope, only up and up and up as long as newbies and oldsters with money eat it up.

futhepharmer Thu 2/12/2009 02:12PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


oh yeah...Jefferson Memorial has an excellent anger management program.

Just steal the money out of your mamas purse!

gregboyer Thu 2/12/2009 03:55PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Captain Trips, if name-calling kids like you are what the Dead scene has come too, I really don't feel like I'm missing out. I'd see them at a festival (Mtn. Jam would be great) but $100 for one band is ridiculous especially when the best member has been gone for 13 years. Besides, I'd rather listen to a Dicks Picks or JGB WITH JERRY CD on my stereo, smoke buds, and grab cold Guinness out of the fridge than pay a hockey arena $8 for a Budweiser and sneak-a-toke.

fishbassplayer starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 05:30PM
-2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


Jambase & the 'Jam scene' wouldn't exhist if it wasn't for the Grateful Dead. Besides, there were 6 members of the Grateful Dead, and Jerry HATED being called the leader of the GD. I was lucky enough to see almost 90 GD shows and about 15 JGB shows, so if anyone wants to go see the remaining guys rip it up, buy a ticket. Also, don't blame the Dead for the ticket prices, they have nothing to do with it. Blame Ticketsheister & Live Nation. This will be a fun time for those who understand it's about the music.

stealin Thu 2/12/2009 05:39PM
Show -3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
CaptainTrips101 Thu 2/12/2009 05:51PM
Show -5 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
CaptainTrips101 Thu 2/12/2009 05:54PM
Show -3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
stealin Thu 2/12/2009 05:56PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Capitan. I think you should stay home. slap slap

stealin Thu 2/12/2009 05:57PM
-2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

just kiddn

stealin Thu 2/12/2009 06:04PM
Show -4 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!
LT Thu 2/12/2009 06:39PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


geez people lots of anger in this forum. i just wanna see the dead at a fest. it's better that way anyway. i didn't even look at ticket prices for their shows because their tour is not a good time for me (finals week at school and such) were they really 100 bucks a ticket? that is crazy. please play wakarusa. i know it's kind of unfeasible but REALLY! play in my backyard!

stealin Thu 2/12/2009 07:36PM
-2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

slap slap

Berns starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 09:47PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


i love you all, glad to hear about bio-deisel bus, i really thought the boys were flying..and that aint green, for a green festival check out Love Your Mother Earth Festival june 5,6,7 in the mountains of Missoula Montana at lolo Hot Springs peace and love

skye berns

Ernie57 Thu 2/12/2009 10:17PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Amazing how some can't think for themselves or are so blinded by their zealotry that no alternative opinions are allowed. If it wasn't about the $$, they would play for free or at least for a reasonable price or smaller venues. They also wouldn't be playing so many shows close to The NYC metro area. This whole thing smells like it was designed by the accountants and not the musicians. It's all about packin 'em in and grabbing that cash. It's about the money and always has been. I don't fault them for making a living but price gouging your fans is another story.

Funny, how I have seen some international headliners who sell discounted (or at least w/out all the "fees" added in) tickets to their fans directly ahead of the public sales. They don't just turn it all over to TB and let them gouge the fans for all they can. Sorry, but I am not buying the "It's all about the music" line. Sure, they had the infrastructure at one point to do it themselves, but they have abandoned that, as well. I think I paid $45 to see Radiohead from the orchestra pit at The Hollywood Bowl last summer. That's a far cry from $100 to sit in the upper deck of a hockey arena.

Funny how the apologists don't mention the lawsuits over the guitars after Garcia died or the fact that these guys wouldn't talk to each other for years. Once Garcia left, the whole thing crashed and burned and the real greed surfaced. This was the saddest part, as I had bought into it for so long.

I checked TB again a few minutes ago and nosebleed seats at my local hockey rink are $87.50 (+ all the BS "fees") pushing the price to over $100 a piece. Not going to support it, sorry. I will leave it to those who need a "Deadamania" experience. Give them your money, they must need it!

No question that they were a great band. But, for me it's all in the past. It's also a "legacy" that is pretty suspect in my book. I guess we all have to experience "Childhood's End" at some point. My only gripe is the fact that I feel like they are screwing their fans at every juncture. "Get it Dan" ticket packages? What is that? Pretty disappointing that everything and everyone sells out eventually. Even The Dead?

Gypsyfun starstarstarstarstar Thu 2/12/2009 11:31PM
-1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


THEY ARE MAKING MY DREAMS COME TRUE!!!!It's true!I just cross my fingers that The Dead and Phish will play a bunch of festies this summer!!I cant wait...this is the year,the year of comebacks!Ah, I'm so happy i get to see these guys in chi-town, lalalalalalala!!!and yeah the prices suck anus an i feel like they have made enough money off loyal broke stoner fans (and yeah most of their fans are broke hippies DUH)but I.personally.cant put a price on this event in history because ive NEVER seen them (i was too young/parents were not deadheads)and i CANT WAIT!!geez haters get over it

Ernie57 Fri 2/13/2009 01:16AM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Don't get me wrong. I am by no means a hater. Well, maybe a TB hater but that would be about it. I saw my first show in 1977 and I am being critical of how they are treating their fans, this much is true.

We DESERVE better and expect a little bit more from these guys, that's all.

‹^› ‹(•¿•)› ‹^› {¬¿¬} Fri 2/13/2009 03:54AM
+4 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

‹^› ‹(•¿•)› ‹^›      {¬¿¬}

I think Capt Trips has been drinking.

gregboyer Fri 2/13/2009 07:01AM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

Ernie I'm with you man. Those of you saying there would be no "scene" without the Grateful Dead are absolutely right. Thank you Jerry. But the rest of the bands actions since Jerry's death stink about as bad as Phil's singing.

philhitz Fri 2/13/2009 11:35AM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

3 more shows just added - unfortunately at the same price

5/4 - chicago

5/14 - shoreline

5/16 - the gorge

darkhallow Fri 2/13/2009 12:09PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

OK everyone lets put some perspective on this. From the start fans have wanted free, or cheaper tickets anyway. (watch Festival Express Canadians were rioting in 1970 because they felt that $15 tickets were outrageous for a festival type atmosphere with a bunch of bands. Fast forward to 1995 when people trashed Deer Creek because the $35 tickets were too much. This is a job for these guys, and I am pretty sure most of the money is going to promoters, venues, etc., not the band. As Jerry said in Festival Express "This whole thing is like voluntary in nature, man." Nobody has to go. If you can afford it and think it would be fun then buy a ticket, if not someone else will.

futhepharmer Fri 2/13/2009 12:21PM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


Thanks again Captain! your vitriol (look it up) has once again proved my point. It keeps getting easier and easier to deal with the fact that I can't afford to see my heroes again (58 GRATEFUL DEAD shows under my belt) thanks to the knowledge that the shows will be populated with the likes of you. Your shit-spewing mouth would just anger me anyways if you were even anywhere close to me cause you'll probably be talking and boasting about your "headies and vial" the whole time, because I know how you young'uns just love to talk through shows like your in a bar.

anyways, thanks again for making me (and a lot of other true heads) feel better about not going.

And I'm not going to Phish either. That's gonna be like a Dave Mathews band lot with all the college kids drunk as fuck and wanting to kick your ass for putting your beer bottle in their trash bag without asking permission, yeah what a blast.

LT Fri 2/13/2009 01:13PM
-1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


damn... ya'll are right. ticket prices are outrageous. i hadn't looked at them because i can't go anyway but nosebleeds for the greensboro show are 160 bucks for two tix. :( that is really sad. oh well, i got miracled in at the stl show in 04 and i guess that was my time. sweet show by the by. hung out on the lawn and danced my ass off fer free. i can only hope they play a fest. but yeah, i can't see myself paying 80 bucks a ticket for row z section 210 and not even being able to dance because seats are in my way. too bad. i hope they learn from this mistake and come back with a vengeance late summer and knock us out with some outdoor shows.

stealin Fri 2/13/2009 03:47PM
-1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

I remember people paying 100 for tix in 89' - 90' no prob. it was on fire! Now days people will pay 350 for Madonna and other big acts no prob. WTF STOP BITCHING

futhepharmer Fri 2/13/2009 04:44PM
+3 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


^you need to substitute rich folks for people in that last post.

c'mon dude, only rich folks would pay $350 for a Madonna ticket. I mean, where do you kids get all your bread? Do you have to pay rent? Do you have bills to pay? Or do you all just "hustle"?

I make a pretty decent amount of money at my job and what with the rent and food and bills and especially keepin' my dome in a heady state still doesn't leave room for $100 dollar tickets in this poor economy. And let's all not forget, it's gonna get worse before it gets better.

skruuhipie Fri 2/13/2009 08:06PM
-2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!



O1Roggae Sat 2/14/2009 07:01AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


I didn't know the dead could speak.

stealin Sat 2/14/2009 08:15AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


stealin Sat 2/14/2009 08:52AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


Damonh420 Sat 2/14/2009 11:02AM
-1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


brooklynite84 Sat 2/14/2009 02:56PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

uhh, Darkhallow...don't you know that, that was in Jerry's day. Do you not recall how much of a money grubbing assfuck Bobby is as of late? Do you not remember the whole shitsteal with the Archives a few years ago? I don't mind the rest of the members, but I'm sure the Band are making some money profits off this tour, it's not all going to promoters and venues. Sure even over ten years ago people were throwing fits over tix prices, but are we not in a damn RECESSION as of today!? And aren't the Dead supposedly a "For the FANS," type of band. Even if the $$$ goes to promoters, they should know better. They didn't sell tix for these prices in 2003/04 so why do they do it now, especially during these troubled economic times?...SO THAT'S WHY WE BITCH!

deadheadjohnny Sat 2/14/2009 06:37PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

New shorline show, 39 dollar tickets. 49 in L A . Thats what theyll go for at the show. Also, they added a show at The Gorge, and tickets will be priced good. If not, you can just camp, and hear the show pretty good. I guess its only in the East where the prices are bad.

MOERON10 Sun 2/15/2009 01:54PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

allmans and doobie bros at the gorge see you fuckers there.

LT Sun 2/15/2009 08:30PM
+2 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


geez man everyone needs to chill out a little bit. some people can afford the tix, others cannot. it sucks for those who can't go but for those who can afford it right now, have fun and stop bragging.

in 04 the tickets were never as expensive as they are now, by the way, stealin.

nated789 Mon 2/16/2009 04:30PM
-1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


They playing main meadow july 4th night at Rainbow Gathering in New Mexico

^^^ Heaven

Ernie57 Mon 2/16/2009 11:22PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

This whole ticket thing is disgusting. What artists did they use for their "survey" of ticket prices? Madonna? Prince? The Stones?

What it this "Consider it Dan" crap? $475.00 for tickets in the first 5 rows? Does that mean that these tickets never even went on sale to the fans?

Between TB and their own "auction site" the common fan has no shot at a decent seat on the floor. TB sells tickets to themselves and then "auctions" them off for a higher price. What exactly is that?

Why do The Dead support and condone this? They don't care about the fans, they care about the $$$. Peace, love, and screw you and give me your money.

Kind of like what I heard a roadie tell one of the fans backstage once, "Just give Phil your stash and get the #$@@$%! out of here...."

What a joke......PT Barnum was right...

Putnameter Tue 2/17/2009 08:45AM
-1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


When can I expect to recieve my mail order Charlottesville tickets???!!?? Has anyone gotten theirs yet? Waiting is killin me!!

bloggersrlosers Tue 2/17/2009 07:37PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


First off Jerry Garcia is dead, which means there is no such thing as the Grateful Dead or "The Dead" for that matter. Any real deadhead that actually saw the band isn't going to waste their time seeing this cover band. If you wanna go, go and have fun and shut up. You can all afford it, and its way cheaper than the HUNDREDS or even a grand you have to spend to get to a festival. And you can all lower prices if u dont buy em and then they are forced to lower them. Don't pay for your ticket than complain how expensive it is. Lazy middle class liberal yuppies love to complain about money while they work useless jobs and spend foolishly. And if you're really poor u got bigger things to worry about than a concert of hasbeens. There is a bigger picture here kids! As for the history of the Grateful Dead anything post '95 will hardly matter if even be remembered. THE MUSIC BUSINESS IS A BUSINESS

Strainger Wed 2/18/2009 02:36PM
+1 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

JEEEEzuss people, shut the hell up about ticket prices!!!!!

I just bought by first Dead ticket since 95 for $50 at the Gorge, WITH the Doobies and Allman Bros. Sure, they are $100 for the floor section right in front of the stage (where I cant figure out why you would want to not see the view at a place like the Gorge) but $50 for GA on the lawn for 3 bands is not a rippoff, quit crying and get a job pussies!!

LT Wed 2/18/2009 07:07PM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


^^ i totally agree. the gorge lawn tix are totally worth it. yay for 50 dollar tickets. now i get to go! never been to washington before. i have a feelin things are gonna get a little strange...

Ernie57 Thu 2/19/2009 08:20AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!

It's funny how some of you are as open minded as members of the taliban are. A little debate isn't allowed into your dogma filled brain. Amazing that a group who "stood for freedom" are now telling you how to vote, as well.

Post coma 1986 Dead is the final slide. If you listen critically (oh no, there's that word again) Garcia's just not there most of the time. From TOG to "Bigger than a drive in movie, ooooweee) it's all but over. The bus has crashed into the mountain, glad I got off in time. It was running on fumes before it finally ran out of gas. Keep buying, kids, they have an expensive lifestyle that they need you to support.

BlowsAgainsttheEmpire Mon 2/23/2009 09:15AM
0 Votes Thumbs down! Thumbs up!


i hear they're rehearsing for 20 days. good. 'cause that is what they need to sound good.