Upcoming Book To Chronicle Grateful Dead In-Fighting In Wake Of Jerry Garcia’s Death


Plenty of books have been written about the Grateful Dead, but not much has been penned about the 22 years that followed the death of Jerry Garcia and the band’s final shows in 1995. Acclaimed journalist Joel Selvin will dig deep into the turmoil of the past few decades in a new tome titled Fare Thee Well: The Final Chapter Of The Grateful Dead’s Long, Strange Trip.

Joel Selvin’s book is due on June 19 as per Barnes & Noble. Fare Thee Well is said to be, “A tell-all biography of the epic in-fighting of the Grateful Dead in the years following band leader Jerry Garcia’s death in 1995.” Selvin is a New York Times bestselling author who had a front row seat as a longtime writer for the San Francisco Chronicle. His past books include The Haight with rock photographer Jim Marshall, Altamont: The Rolling Stones, The Hells Angels & The Inside Story Of Rock’s Darkest Day and co-writing Sammy Hagar’s Red: My Uncensored Life In Rock autobiography.

Here’s a description of the book:

The Grateful Dead rose to greatness under the inspired leadership of guitarist Jerry Garcia, but the band very nearly died along with him. When Garcia passed away suddenly in August of 1995, the remaining band members experienced full crises of confidence and identity. So long defined by Garcia’s vision for the group, the surviving “Core Four,” as they came to be called, were reduced to conflicting agendas, strained relationships, and catastrophic business decisions that would leave the iconic band in shambles. Wrestling with how best to define their living legacy, the band made many attempts at restructuring, but it would take twenty years before relationships were mended enough for the Grateful Dead as fans remembered them to once again take the stage.

Acclaimed music journalist and New York Times bestselling author Joel Selvin was there for much of the turmoil following Garcia’s death, and he’ll offer a behind-the-scenes account of the ebbs and flows that occurred during the ensuing two decades. Plenty of books have been written about the rise of the Grateful Dead, but this final chapter of the band’s history has never before been explored in detail. Culminating in the landmark tour bearing the same name, Fare Thee Well charts the arduous journey from Garcia’s passing all the way up to the uneasy agreement between the Core Four that led to the series of shows celebrating the band’s fiftieth anniversary and finally allowing for a proper, and joyous, sendoff of the group revered by so many.

The “Cour Four” consists of Phil Lesh, Bob Weir, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann. In the Summer of 2015 the quartet played together for what currently stands as the last time at Fare Thee Well concerts in Santa Clara and Chicago. Weir, Hart and Kreutzmann went on to form Dead & Company, while Lesh is content to play at his Terrapin Crossroads venue and occasional shows elsewhere with The Terrapin Family Band and guest spots.

[Hat Tip – LarryGuitarSG]