Phil Lesh Signs Exclusive Deal With Peter Shapiro For 2014 Shows

By Scott Bernstein Nov 3, 2013 5:30 pm PST

A few weeks back former Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh revealed “he’s off the bus” in 2014 and wouldn’t tour next year in an interview with Gary Lambert. Lesh clarified that his “off the bus” comment didn’t mean he would retire and hinted at potential residencies. Tonight, Phil’s 2014 became more clear as the New York Times reported on an exclusive deal Lesh struck with impresario and Relix publisher Peter Shapiro.

[Photo by Adam McCullough]

According to the Times, Shapiro’s historic Capitol Theatre venue in Port Chester, NY will host at least 30 Phil Lesh performances in 2014 starting in April as part of a total 45 shows the bassist will play in just a handful of venues. The Times reports the series will kick off on November 14 at Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg. Lesh will also play the Brooklyn Bowl’s Vegas outpost on April 20th and will return to Lockn’ in September. Phil’s deal with Shapiro will be in addition to and unconnected to Lesh’s shows at his own Terrapin Crossroads venue in San Rafael, CA.

“I’m not retiring, and I’m not slowing down…I’m pretty sure I want to make music till I can’t breathe anymore. I just want to do it within the most focused possible way. The future looks really exciting,” Phil told the Times about the deal.

At age 73 Phil Lesh continues a career filled with innovative music and business deals. Lesh was one of the more business-savvy members of the Grateful Dead, a band so ahead of its time that a book was written about the marketing lessons businesses can learn from the group. Shapiro also has a storied history of success and bucking the trends in the music business. Pete’s a Deadhead who’s dedicated to providing his patrons a memorable experience. Over the course of the last five years he’s opened an award-winning venue in New York City (Brooklyn Bowl) that will soon expand to London and Las Vegas, revived a legendary venue by bringing it into the 21st Century without ignoring its past (Capitol Theatre) and saved Relix in 2009, which all comes on top of giving jam fans an additional four years of shows at the iconic Wetlands Preserve after he purchased the NYC night club from Larry Bloch in 1997. The Lesh/Shapiro partnership seems like a perfect match on paper. The Times notes that Lesh will receive guaranteed payments from Shapiro in exchange for “control of the ticket sales, merchandising and recorded music rights from the concerts.”

Meanwhile, Phil Lesh and Friends conclude a four-night stand at the Cap tonight in which they’ve been performing songs from classic albums each night. We’ll have more on the run tomorrow.

[via New York Times]

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