As always keep in touch with comments or contributions, be they full reviews or some Quick Picks.
Quick Picks From the Disc Changer:
Phish, 2-21-03, Disc 1- DWD
Legion of Mary, Dick's Gift Disc 1- Go top Gdlive.com if you haven't heard this
Garaj Mahal, 8-10-02- Berkfest set, best set of the weekend
Grateful Dead, 3-23-75- The Blues for Allah set, almost entirely instrumental
moe., 12-28-02- Disc 1- Some of the best moe. ever
Discman: Ratdog, Live at Roseland, Disc 1- the acoustic Corrina
JGB- Don't Let Go
This double disc live set is from the Orpheum Theater in San Francisco in May of 1976. It is often overlooked by fans, mainly because the opening Sugaree and They Love Each Other are relatively mellow versions compared with GD versions. That being said, there is actually a great deal of subtlety to the music, and some fantastic interaction between Keith Godchaux and Garcia on the opener. The first disc also includes a superb Sitting in Limbo and a very, very upbeat Mission in the Rain.
The second disc is even better with a slick, grooved out Tore Up and a blissful I'll Take a Melody. Donna's vocals are splendid throughout. It's worth noting, especially to those who repeatedly slam Donna, that she was part of the Garcia Band for many years, and an integral part at that. Even on this release she gets lead vocals for a somewhat rare Strange Man. The show climaxes with the exceptional pairing of My Sisters and Brothers > Lonesome and a Long Way From Home- long and loving and wonderful.
Bob Marley 5/26/76
This single disc show is from Hollywood, CA and despite the locale is warm and encouraging. Opening with Trenchtown Rock, the show features a number of strong performances, such as Burnin' and Lootin', a smooth Rebel Music and a deeply worked I Shot the Sheriff. Late in the set there is a jammed out Lively Up Yourself with super-bad guitar and excellent skat vocals from Bob- it's worth hunting down this disc for this tune alone. The encore is also exceptional, a medley of Get Up Stand Up > No More Trouble > War > No More Trouble > Get Up Stand Up, although some versions cut at the very start of War.
Peter Tosh- Live and Dangerous
This official disc is from 6-11-76 (which is also the date of a fine Dead show by the way) and is high energy and entirely addictive. It opens with a great instrumental jam followed by Igziabeher (Let Jah Be Praised). The performance is loaded with that loving aggression and pride that led Tosh away from the Marley camp and down his own road- it's all about the machine gun guitar. And in fact the guitar work on this disc is exceptional- just excellent, forceful but balanced playing. Some of the other highlights include a lengthy, preachy Burial, Mark of the Beast and a boiling Steppin' Razor. I've been listening to this for weeks now and just can't stop.