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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

You’ve all heard of the Grateful Dead. If you haven’t, please stop reading this. This post is meant for the Deadheads among us.

Last night, Furthur, a new kind of Dead cover band, performed a stellar show at the Stabler Arena in Bethlehem, PA. I say ‘new kind of Dead cover band’ because well, they’re not really a full cover band. You see, the new group is comprised of two original members of the Grateful Dead, Phil Lesh and Bob Weir. The other members of the band include Dark Star Orchestra front man John Kadlecik as the voice and guitar of Jerry, Jeff Chimenti, Jay Lane, and Joe Russo.

Photo by Kate Langenburg

The arena was a good size, but not too big. Fans packed themselves onto the floor, in the upper decks, and sides of the venue, but left enough room between each other for dancing, of course. The vibe among the fans was a very positive one. Even the fact that the arena served no alcohol didn’t dampen the spirits of the Furthur fans. (See, you don’t need alcohol to have fun, kids.)

The band ripped off one Dead song after another, leaving room for improvisation and long spirited jams. Accompanied by a trippy light show, the music swirled around the venue, bringing fans of all ages together as one.

I have to stop right here and just mention that they played the ULTIMATE Dead song — Terrapin Station. Seeing the orignial members of the Dead play this song together is really something special. You can feel the bond between the musicians and hear the effects they create. I’ve seen both of these musicians play this song individually, but this was by far the best live version I have heard. People were dancing with arms held high in the air as they sang every single word to the much loved song.

Here’s the complete set list from the show:

Set 1: Golden Road (to Unlimited Devotion)>Gloria>Good Morning Little Schoolgirl>Ramble On Rose>Magnolia Mountain>Black Peter>Passenger>Next Time You See Me

Set 2: Bertha>Row Jimmy>Reuben and Cherise>No More I Do>Eyes of the World>Terrapin Station>The Wheel>Touch of Grey>Donor Rap

Encore: Brokedown Palace

Here’s a snippet from last night’s Eyes of the World. Check out the awesome piano jam:

I must say that John Kadlecik fits in quite nicely with the original Dead members. His voice is eerily like Jerry’s, but in a good way. I heard a few fans in the crowd commenting on how much they thought he sounded like the original frontman.

Good news for all you Furthur fans — the band has just announced that they will be playing the 14th annual All Good Festival in West Virginia. If you’re a jam band lover, this festival is for you.

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Kate Langenburg/A&E Groove

For those of you who don’t know, Sirius satellite radio is the best thing since sliced bread. It lets you listen to any kind of music…or talkshow…or comedy sketch or routine any time of the day with no commercial breaks.

It specializes in unique stations, like Radio Margaritaville, a channel devoted entirely to the musical likings of Jimmy Buffett. Or there’s a channel called Jam On, which plays only jam bands. Or how about a channel for all you classic rockers out there? Classic Vinyl will suit you. (Ok, enough. If I go on like this, I won’t ever get to my point.)

There he is...MY man, Jerry Garcia. Photo from jerryfest.com.

There he is...MY man, Jerry Garcia. Photo from jerryfest.com.

But for all you deadheads out there, the best channel by far just might be the Grateful Dead station. All GD, all the time, no commericals. They play live shows in their entirety!

All this week, the Grateful Dead channel is paying homage to its leader — THE man, Jerry Garcia. Welcome to Jerry Week, folks.

Since it’s already the middle of the week, I won’t dwell on what we already missed. Today and every day for the rest of the week, the channel will be playing three Jerry shows per day. Some are with the Dead, some are with other artists.

You can view a schedule of the shows programmed on the Grateful Dead Channel website. Tonight will feature a show from the Jerry Garcia Band in Columbia, MD, 9/2/89. That starts at 9 pm. If you’re a newbie to the GD channel, they also have listings of their regular programming, too.

If you have Sirius, go ahead and pay your respects to one of music’s greatests. If not, sign up!

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