For a band that excels in the live music setting, Umphrey’s McGee have not really released a whole lot of live material in the past, at least not when compared to a lot of their jamband counterparts. Outside of Live at the Murat and a few Hall of Fame releases, most of their official projects have come out of the studio lately. Now with the band working to spotlight their standalone streaming platform on the UMLive App released less than a year ago, the demand for live performances has become greater than ever before.
On a crisp October day in 2004, we rolled into the Bay Area for our second show ever at the legendary Great American Music Hall. If you have ever set foot inside those hallowed halls, you understand the “if these walls could talk” feeling that permeates the room. Home to countless legendary performances from Sonny Rollins to the Grateful Dead, the energy is undeniable. Our excitement about that show returns today as we roll out the previously unreleased, re-mastered matrix recording from the vault.
This year slamgrass pioneers Leftover Salmon celebrate their twenty-fifth anniversary. Beyond the musical splendor, a blend of Cajun, bluegrass, zydeco, and hard psychedelic rock, is a lovable raucousness. Their triumphant resurgence into fulltime touring has been strengthened by the presence of founding Little Feat pianist Bill Payne.
The Grateful Dead are widely considered the first “jam band.” Within the world of rock and roll, jam bands are noted for their extended improvisations and even experimental departures from traditional song structure (think Dark Star, Drumz & Space, and of course, Seastones).
While the “Fare Thee Well” Forth of July at Solider Field announcement from the surviving members of The Dead have fans nationwide in pandemonium, California’s Bay Area has already begun celebrating fifty years of Grateful Dead with a number of intimate events. Guitarist Bob Weir has returned to performance with some stellar extended-for-network-TV jamming with host John Mayer on The Late Late Show.
It’s been two weeks since the surviving members of Grateful Dead announced that they would be performing a final farewell three-day concert event over Fourth of July weekend at Chicago’s Solider Field. The most important psychedelic rock band in history turned fifty years old this year. Another equally significant anniversary for 2015 is twenty years ago this July were the final performances of the Grateful Dead with lead guitarist and bandleader Jerry Garcia.
So many years after the disbandment of Grateful Dead that in turn relocated tens of thousands of devoted tour followers to various other acts and bigger life purposes, folks still crave that familiar feeling that kept them on tour. It didn’t only come from the music that Garcia and the gang connected with so many people through, but the sense of community and thriving weirdness that expanded continuously over decades of different intersections.
If achieving a balance in diversity is a music festival’s key to success, then Dave Frey and Peter Shapiro have truly created the most dynamically integrated festival experience of all time. The Lockn’ Music Festival isn’t another colossal gathering from bandwagon fans there to see a couple of big name headliners mixed in with who-else-knows.