To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Grateful Dead, JamBase teamed with Telefunken to produce the Songs Of Their Own video series. We began with a list of 100 Grateful Dead original songs (exclusively their tunes, not covers they often played) and tapped many of our favorite artists to record a cover version either at the JamBase office in San Francisco or at one of the many venues around town and beyond. No song was allowed to be covered twice, and today’s participants Midnight North flew to “Attics Of My Life.”
The second to last song on the Grateful Dead’s album American Beauty, “Attics Of My Life” made its live debut on May 14, 1970 at Meramec Community College near St. Louis. The Garcia/Hunter tune was played live a number of more times in 1970, skipped in 1971, brought out just twice in 1972 and then shelved for 17 years. The second night of the “Formerly The Warlocks” Hampton Coliseum two-night stand on October 9, 1989 that saw “Dark Star” return, also produced a resurrected “Attics Of My Life” as the evening’s encore. The Dead kept “Attics” in semi-regular rotation until its last live performance July 2, 1995 at Deer Creek in Noblesville, Indiana.
Truly Grateful Dead family, San Francisco locals Midnight North recorded “Attics Of My Life” at guitarist Grahame Lesh’s father Phil Lesh’s Terrapin Crossroads venue in nearby San Rafael. Filmed just days ago before their regular Sunday evening set, the younger Lesh on acoustic guitar was joined by band mates Elliott Peck, Alex Jordan and Connor O’Sullivan on upright bass, who set up on the floor in the middle of Terrapin Crossroads’ Grate Room to record their gorgeous, sparsely arranged take on “Attics Of My Life.”
Watch all of the Songs Of Their Own entries including Anders Osborne & Luther Dickinson, Yonder Mountain String Band, Leftover Salmon, Keller Williams and more via the YouTube Playlist below.