10 Grateful Dead Related Performances From Dear Jerry Acts

By Team JamBase Mar 9, 2015 6:30 am PDT

With Dear Jerry: Celebrating The Music Of Jerry Garcia set to take place at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland on May 14 we look at the connection to the Dead from some of artists on an all-star lineup that includes the Phil Lesh, Bill Kreutzmann, Mickey Hart and Bob Weir listed individually.

We shied away from those who were in bands with Garcia such as Lesh, Kreutzmann, Hart, Weir, David Grisman and Bruce Hornsby and we didn’t come across any Garcia/Dead related performances from O.A.R. or Trampled By Turtles, but every other Dear Jerry act on the initial lineup is represented including Yonder Mountain String Band, Jimmy Cliff, moe. and Widespread Panic. As a reminder, tickets for Dear Jerry go on sale Friday, March 13 at 12 p.m. via Ticketfly. There’s a Citi-card member pre-sale beginning on Tuesday, March 10 at 10 a.m. ET followed by a general pre-sale on Wednesday, March 11 at 10 a.m. ET using the code “JERRY” via Ticketfly.

1. Jimmy Cliff

The reggae legend sang his own “The Harder They Come” with the Jerry Garcia Band at Berkeley’s Greek Theatre on August 26, 1989. Garcia started covering “The Harder They Come” just two years after Cliff originally recorded the tune and Jerry played it over 350 times with his various solo bands. “The Harder They Come” was the B-side of a 1971 single that featured “Sitting In Limbo” on the A-side, a song that was also a staple of Garcia’s solo repertoire.

2. Greensky Bluegrass

The Michigan-based jamgrass band has been known to cover a number of Dead tunes including “China Cat Sunflower” > “I Know You Rider” as they did March 11, 2011 at Portland’s Crystal Ballroom seen in the video above.

3. moe.

Bob Weir has sat in with moe. a handful of times with the most recent guest spot occurring at moe.down in 2011, which included an extended take on “Feel Like A Stranger.” Weir first sat in with moe. during the 1997 Furthur Festival stop in Saratoga Springs, New York on the full “That’s It For The Other One” suite and later guested with the band during a September ’97 visit to San Francisco.

4. Railroad Earth

Phil Lesh sat in with Railroad Earth at The Fillmore in San Francisco on March 10, 2012 for a number of tunes including “Terrapin Station.” The Fillmore marked Lesh’s second appearance with the group as he also joined them for a string of songs in the second set at The Independent in San Francisco on April 16, 2005. In 2013, RRE covered Old & In The Way’s 1973 album. Railroad Earth has been known to occasionally cover the Dead with “Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo” and “The Wheel” played most frequently.

5. The Disco Biscuits

Grateful Dead drummers Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart sat in with the Disco Biscuits a few times last year and will do so again in April at Red Rocks. Watch full show video of tDB’s Gathering Of The Vibes set above, which features Hart & Kreutzmann guest spots on songs such as “West L.A. Fadeaway,” “Eyes Of The World” and “Shakedown Street.”

6. Los Lobos

Garcia was a huge fan of Los Lobos and the feeling was mutual. Jerry sat in with Los Lobos at New George’s in San Rafael, California on May 26, 1989 on “Born On The Bayou” and “Suzie Q.” Los Lobos covered “Bertha” for the 1991 Deadicated tribute album and it’s been a staple of the band’s live repertoire ever since. Just last month Phil Lesh sat in with Los Lobos on “Bertha” at Terrapin Station.

7. Widespread Panic

While Bob Weir sat in with Widespread Panic at Buttermilk Mountain in 1999 and at Bonnaroo ’05, we went with the band’s bust out of “Fire On The Mountain” from March 10, 2011 in Athens. Panic hadn’t played the tune in a whopping 2,328 shows before that night in their hometown. Weir is the only member of the Grateful Dead to have sat in with Widespread Panic. Though the Georgia rockers covered plenty of Dead tunes in their early years, “Cream Puff War” is the only one still in the rotation.

8. Buddy Miller

The country singer/songwriter has been known to cover “Deal” in concert as he did with Gillian Welch, David Rawlings and the Sweet Harmony Traveling Revue on August 24, 2004.

9. Jorma Kaukonen

The Jefferson Airplane co-founder played with Garcia a number of times including at the infamous Airplane House Jam from October 28, 1969 and a Garcia-led “Rock Jam” at Carousel Ballroom in 1968. Jerry was also instrumental in the making of Jefferson Airplane’s 1967 album Surrealistic Pillow. “Jerry could be credited with really being the producer… in that he was one of us and he knew what to do with the band… He really was the producer who arranged those songs,” Kaukonen said of Garcia’s involvement.

10. Yonder Mountain String Band

Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart sat in with Yonder Mountain String Band and other guests on “New Speedway Boogie” and “Franklin’s Tower” at the Northwest String Summit on July 17, 2010. Yonder Mountain String Band have covered the Dead more frequently than any other artist on this list with the possible exception of Los Lobos, but unlike the East L.A. rockers Yonder doesn’t stick mainly to just one song. “Althea,” “Here Comes Sunshine,” “Fire On The Mountain,” “Mason’s Children” and “Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo” are among the Dead tunes Yonder has covered more than once.

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