good morning everyone.
“I can’t be wrong about everything,” your hoddler-in-chief wrote on Friday ahead of the Dead & Company concert. And he certainly wasn’t!
So we have to talk a little bit about that show, don’t we?
Your HIC got to his seat at Jiffy Lube Live in Bristow, Virginia, two minutes before the band started playing. Bob Weir was fired up, starting off the show with Men Are Smart, Women are Smarter.
John Mayer tore it up during the bluesy It Hurts Me Too, channel his inner Pig Pen. And then a tour debut of the folksy Pegg-O! How wonderful. I missed that song the last time I saw Dead & Co last year, so I’m very grateful to have seen it this time. Peggy-O, Man Smart/Women Smarter and Throwing Stones - another political tune - were the highlights of the first set.
But wow, that second set. Let me tell you, it must have been one of the greatest sequence of sounds to have inhabited my eardrums.
Between sets I was talking to a couple next to me. I asked them if there was a song they wanted.
“Terrapin Station”, the replied. Well look at that - me too!
After a 30 minute break, John Mayer began with Sugaree, which I would say best suits his voice. After Sugaree settled the crowd in the Dead played one of their most played songs, Playing in the Band. It was like living in history.
This great song that had graced so many tapes, archives and playlists was being performed right in front of me. It was a terrific experience only heightened by segueing into Uncle John’s Band. Absolutely perfect.
Then a little jazz improvisation. And then your hoddler-in-chief hears a sound, cranes his neck forward and delightedly high-fives the couple next to him.
Inspiration, move me brightly
light the song with sense and color
Hold away despair
more than this I will not ask
There was no song I wanted to listen to more on that night than Terrapin Station, the Dead’s magnus opus. The studio version was what, 11 minutes long? So imagine the joy from everyone in the crowd that this was expanded well into 20 minutes.
It was magical. I didn’t think I would ever hear this song live. But there I was, dancing in the streets, dancing to Terrapin.
And everything builds to that climactic moment:
And I know we’ll be there soon, terrapin
I can’t figure out, terrapin
if it’s the end or beginning, terrapin
That second set was unforgettable, and better than Scarlet-Fire which I witnessed last year.
What else is there to say? If you know the songs, you know. If you don’t, then I recommend getting acquainted with them.
To the hoddler seeing the Dead at Citi Field this coming week: I hope you have a great time at the show, and I’m jealous I didn’t catch them at Dodger Stadium!
Fitzie’s track of the day: Terrapin Station, by the Grateful Dead
And now for your links:
Alasdair Gold: Eric Dier on fighting for a spot on England, and his views on Tottenham’s transfer window thus far
The Athletic ($$): Antonio Conte showing Spurs squad no mercy during preseason trip
Paul Pogba completes move to Juventus
Neco Williams joins Nottingham Forest
Luis Suarez weighing ‘five or six offers’ from MLS clubs