Jerry Garcia / Jerry Garcia Band

Garcialive, Vol. 4: March 22nd, 1978 Veteran's Hall

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Cherry-picking select dates from the unfathomably massive amount of live recordings attributable to the Grateful Dead and related projects has become almost a genre unto itself. The Garcialive series picks up on the style of the Dick's Picks (and later Dave's Picks) live series, hopping around to standout dates in the lineage of the Jerry Garcia Band rather than going in chronological order. Garcia's solo band tended toward a rather nebulous nature, both in terms of activity and lineup, usually performing only select, low-key dates in between Dead tours and going through many different lineups of various players. Vol. 4: March 22nd, 1978 finds Garcia and crew performing two remarkably laid-back sets at Veteran's Hall in Sebastopol, California, fresh off a short tour and just prior to the release of Cats Under the Stars, the only studio album that would fall under the Jerry Garcia Band banner. Garcialive, Vol. 4 features a lineup of key contributors to the album in full-on live mode, including Grateful Dead keyboardist/vocalist (and husband/wife) duo Keith & Donna Godchaux and bassist John Kahn. Also on-stage for this set are stellar vocalist Maria Muldaur offering strong backups and a cameo appearance from future JGB collaborator keyboardist Ozzie Ahlers. Apart from running through original numbers from Cats Under the Stars such as the Robert Hunter-penned "Gomorrah" and a rare live rendition of "Love in the Afternoon," the band runs through a string of highly revamped covers, including some jammed-out takes on Motown and reggae and a particularly inspired version of gospel tune "I'll Be with Thee." Keeping things in flux, the JGB also deliver their versions of songs that were standard to their set around this time, including a lovely look at Bob Dylan's "Simple Twist of Fate" and their particularly slowed-down version of "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down."

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