Wed, 09/08/2010 - 4:12 pm

Dear Dead Heads:

In 1980, the Grateful Dead needed a director to shoot the planned multi-city broadcast of their Halloween show from Radio City Music Hall.   They brought a guy named Len Dell’Amico out to San Francisco for an interview, and he managed to navigate through one large Hell’s Angel and some fat, potent spliffs sufficiently well to persuade Jerry Garcia that he was the guy for the job.  The result was Dead Ahead, which went on to become a platinum home video.

A couple of years later, Garcia reached out to Dell’Amico to suggest that they do another video, which evolved into a second major success, both commercial and critical, So Far.

By then, 1988, it was clear that the band would be needing video reinforcement at their larger shows, and Len signed on as the band’s “video guy” into the early ‘90s.  His first major show was the band’s Madison Square Garden benefit for the Rainforest, and the experience left Len thinking about the environment for a good long while.

After finishing his work with the Dead, he went on to produce concert films and music videos for people like Sara Vaughan, Herbie Hancock, the Allman Brothers, Linda Ronstadt, Bonnie Raitt, Ray Charles, and Carlos Santana.

But like any filmmaker, what he really wanted to do was to make a story-type movie.  And now he has, a rough little beast of a story called Everything Must Go, which combines slacker comedy and a looming environmental disaster, one consequence of that 1988 benefit.

Everything Must Go is yet another weird installment in the ongoing saga of the Grateful Dead’s larger impact on America.  Watch it! …and tell folks about it.

For more information and to buy the DVD, go to www.everythingmustgothemovie.com

Tue, 10/19/2010 - 9:20 pm

Dear Dead Heads:

In 1964, Jerry Garcia and his buddy Sandy Rothman packed up a tape recorder and took off for the American South on a bluegrass pilgrimage. One of the groups they most wanted to see was “Jim and Jesse” (McReynolds), of Dothan, Alabama. They saw them, and they had a ball.

Jim and Jesse went on to legendary status in the bluegrass world with more than 45 years at the Grand Ol’ Opry, Grammys, and membership in any Hall of Fame that means anything to this music.

And the world spins round, and now Jesse (alas, Jim is no longer with us) has completed the circle with Jerry by recording a tribute to the Grateful Dead’s music, Songs of the Grateful Dead – A Tribute to Jerry Garcia and Robert Hunter. Superbly assisted by David Nelson, Stu Allen, and some incredible Nashville players, he’s cut 12 classic Dead songs, from Black Muddy River and Ripple to Franklin’s Tower and Standing on the Moon. And to top it off, there’s a brand-new McReynolds-Hunter tune called Day by Day.

It’s wonderful stuff. Jesse sounds like a Southern version of Jerry if he’d lived so long, and sings these songs like the master he is. His mandolin playing is fabulous, and the other players and singers are just right.

This is going to knock your socks off. Listen and you’ll agree.

Very best,

Dennis McNally

For more info, go to: www.woodstockrecords.com or www.jimandjesse.com

Tue, 10/09/2012 - 9:47 am

Concord Records is going to have a contest – or more precisely a drawing – and give away a total of six box sets.  To enter, all you have to do is send in your name and mailing address to keystonecompanions.com. You’ll have from now to November 12th to enter, with five winners being picked and announced on November 13th.  As a bonus, we’ll have an early winner chosen and announced on Halloween – it’s an official Dead Head holiday.  Your reward, even before any of the box sets get given out, will be a free download of Jerry & Merl’s “Keeper,” one of the highlights of these shows.Keystone Companions/The Complete 1973 Fantasy Recordings, recorded live on July 10 and 11, 1973 at the Keystone club in Berkeley, California, beautifully captures the magical musical friendship of keyboardist Merl Saunders and guitarist Jerry Garcia. The Fantasy Records lavish four-disc set, scheduled for September 25, 2012 release on the heels of the 70th anniversary of Garcia’s birth, includes seven previously unreleased tracks, a special booklet featuring vintage photos; liner notes by Grateful Dead expert David Gans; and a poster, coaster, button, and “scratchbook” (replicating the design of the original album’s promotional matchbooks).The sterling band featured Saunders on keyboards; Garcia, guitar and vocals; John Kahn, bass; and Bill Vitt, drums. Virtuoso David Grisman added mandolin to Bob Dylan’s “Positively 4th Street.” The mix of songs ranged from Saunders originals to covers of songs by Jimmy Cliff, Junior Parker, Holland-Dozier-Holland, Rodgers & Hart, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Arthur “Big Boy” Crudup, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Don Nix and Dan Penn and Dylan.San Francisco-born keyboardist Merl Saunders had been writing and performing in New York before returning to the West Coast.  Producer Nick Gravenites offered him studio work that included playing with guitarist Jerry Garcia, already at the helm of one of the world’s most popular rock bands, the Grateful Dead.  “Garcia reminded me of [jazz guitarist] Eric Gale,” Saunders recollected, “Anything he played was very musical. He knew how to do a rhythm on any kind of tune — gospel, blues, jazz. I was amazed.”Saunders also helped Garcia expand his harmonic knowledge and even showed him some Art Tatum runs. “He taught me music,” Garcia said of his friend.By December 1970, a weekly jam session featuring Saunders, Garcia, Kahn, and Vitt had become a weekly gig at San Francisco’s Matrix. Of course Garcia was already a major figure in the musical counterculture as lead guitarist for the Dead, so he kept this new band low-key — so much that it never really had a name (although it was referred to as The Group at times.) As Garcia said, “I couldn’t take the pressure of being a double celebrity. It’s a drag just being it once.” (That didn’t stop the itinerant Garcia from having a third band as well, Old and In the Way, with David Grisman, Peter Rowan, and Vassar Clements.)Live at Keystone, originally released as a double LP, was recorded by Grateful Dead associates Betty Cantor and Rex Jackson; all four artists are credited as producers. Additional material was released as Live at KeystoneVolumes 1 & 2 in 1988. Keystone Companions/The Complete 1973 Fantasy Recordings assembles the original recordings and presents them, remastered, in the order in which the songs were performed at those two shows. The repertoire spans blues, rockabilly, jazz, funk, Broadway, Motown, two Bob Dylan songs, and Jimmy Cliff’s immortal “The Harder They Come.” Some songs appear twice, providing the opportunity to hear how the band kept it loose and fresh. 

As Gans notes, “This music is as exciting and satisfying 40 years later as it was on the day it was made.”On the collection’s September 25 street date, Fantasy Records will also reissue, on multi-color double vinyl LP, the first Saunders/Garcia album Live at Keystone.

Mon, 11/19/2012 - 11:38 am

Steve Kimock, one of Americas most original and innovative guitarists will be performing with his band at Stage 48, New York’s newest concert venue.Performing with Kimock will be Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Bernie Worrell, co-founding keyboardist of Parliament/Funkadelic (and a performer with Talking Heads), percussionist Wally Ingram (David Lindley, Sheryl Crow) and bassist Andy Hess (Gov't Mule) - a truly exceptional band.But then the evening will be kicked up a notch when some “very special guests” stop by to jam and raise money for “STAGE 2”, a fund raiser for victims of super storm Sandy.For one night only, in addition to regularly priced tickets, we will be selling tickets at special “STAGE 2” fundraising prices:Let’s Get Rid of the Blues - $50At this level you get a poster signed by Steve Kimock and the band.Let’s Rock Some Lives - $100This level gets you a signed poster and a picture with the band.Let’s Raise Some Roofs - $250And at this level you get the opportunity to sit in on the sound check , you receive a signed poster, and you get your picture taken with the band.Doors open at 6pm and the show starts at 7pm.STAGE 48 is located at 605 West 48th Street, New York, NY in the heart of Hell’s Kitchen.***Steve Kimock was originally scheduled to perform at Stage 48 December 8, 2012.  Due to a delay in the opening of the venue that date has been changed to February 23, 2013. People who purchased tickets can either get a refund or use the ticket for the new date.For additional information, go to http://www.stage48.com

Mon, 01/21/2013 - 2:36 pm

Steve Kimock and his friends Bernie Worrell (Parliament/Funkadelic, Talking Heads), Wally Ingram (David Lindley, Sheryl Crow) and Andy Hess (Gov't Mule) will bop around the Northeast in February.

Mon, 09/29/2014 - 11:23 am

They’ll be fresh off DSO’s Fall Tour, but they can’t resist making music together, so Mattson/Barraco & Friends with Skip Vangelas is pleased to announce a holiday season 3-night run of stirring psychedelic electricity!

With collaborative jam discoveries developing over the last four years, guitarist Jeff Mattson (Dark Star Orchestra, Donna Jean Godchaux Band, Zen Tricksters) and long-time musical collaborator keyboardist Rob Barraco (Dark Star Orchestra, Phil Lesh & Friends, Zen Tricksters) will be joined by DSO bandmate bassist Skip Vangelas (Dark Star Orchestra, Border Legion) for a run of some of their favorite haunts.

The mini tour kicks off with a show at the new 89 North Music Venue in Patchogue, LI (12/11).  They’ll also make a stop at MexiCali Live (12/13) and wind up – fittingly – at Garcia’s at the Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, NY (12/17).

With Rob’s son Tom Barraco on drums, the quartet will showcase original music and an exploration of the classic songbooks that inspired them with a touch of Grateful Dead sprinkled in.


Jeff Mattson - Guitar

Rob Barraco - Keys

Skip Vangelas - Bass

Tom Barraco - Drums


Thursday, Dec. 11th, 7:30 PM:

 89 North Music Venue

 89 North Ocean Avenue

 Patchogue, NY 11772


Tickets: https://www.vendini.com/ticket-software.html?t=tix&e=7d977196f596aa6b9287e0cbb13bfe7f

Saturday, Dec. 13th, 9:00 PM:            

MexiCali Live

1409 Queen Anne Rd.

Teaneck, NJ 07666

 (201) 833-0011  

 Tickets: http://www.ticketweb.com/t3/sale/SaleEventDetail?dispatch=loadSelectionData&eventId=5373935

Wednesday, Dec. 17th, 9:00 PM:       

Garcia’s at the Capitol Theatre

149 Westchester Avenue

 Port Chester, NY 10573-4549

  1. 937-4126.

Tickets: www.ticketfly.com  

For more information:


Thu, 12/18/2014 - 8:52 am

Steve Kimock will host a special tribute show to Jerry Garcia in several Northeast cities featuring an all star cast of musicians from the Grateful Dead universe including Zero bassist Bobby Vega, Jerry Garcia’s drummer Bill Vitt, Furthur/RatDog keyboardist Jeff Chimenti, Dan Lebowitz of ALO on guitar, and Kimock’s own son on drums, John Morgan Kimock. The band will focus on the roots and R&B wing of Garcia’s vast repertoire.

When he first arrived in the Bay Area in the mid-‘70s, people thought he sounded a bit like Garcia.  Actually, Kimock hadn’t really listened to the man at that point.  He reflected, “I wasn’t trying to sound like Jerry, I was failing to sound like Roy Buchanan.”  So hearing Garcia’s own debt to Buchanan in the Keystone material suggested a special run to pay homage to Garcia and those that came before by playing the material of Garcia and Saunders (along with Kimock’s own catalog) – something Kimock is ordinarily quite careful to avoid. 

These venues may not offer the same funky, grungy ambience the Keystone bars offered, but the music will most certainly be up to standard and fill it with the spirit of Jerry Garcia.  

Tour Dates:

Wednesday, March 11thGypsy Sally’s, Washington, D.C.

Thursday, March 12thBaltimore Soundstage, Baltimore, MD

Friday, March 13thGramercy Theatre, New York, NY

Saturday, March 14thThe Met, Pawtucket, RI

Sunday, March 15thArdmore Music Hall, Ardmore, PA

Thu, 03/05/2015 - 10:30 am

The kitchen table that members of the Grateful Dead once gathered around to drink coffee and consider the day.  The desk from the band room at 5th and Lincoln.  Jerry Garcia’s last reading material.  The original oil paintings on which Rick Griffin based the 1990 tour poster.  Stanley “Mouse” Miller’s original “Golden Road” fan club poster.  The original lyrics, in Robert Hunter’s handwriting, of “He’s Gone.”

To paraphrase William Faulkner, “The past isn’t Dead (well, yes it is), it isn’t even past.”  If Dead Heads can send in many tens of thousands of responses and millions of dollars in money orders to attend the band’s “Fare Thee Well” concerts in Chicago July 3-5, God only knows what they’ll do to permanently own genuine, intimate fragments of the Dead’s own past.

On April 11 and 12, 2015, Donley Auction Services in Union, IL, will conduct a juried online-only (although there will be a few invited guests) auction of these remarkable objects and many, many more.

Further information is available at


But wait, there’s more:

Jerry Garcia’s personal William Morris chair (decorated with a Rolling Stone portrait of him).  Never-before-seen photographs from the three 1978 shows in Egypt.  Much more rare and remarkable Rick Griffin and “Mouse” Miller artwork.  The “Soto List,” the historical seed that led to the legendary Deadbase.


Fri, 04/03/2015 - 1:52 pm

There’s been a new development in the Grateful Dead Family Jubilee auction (www.gratefuldeadauction.com).

Mickey Hart has made two extremely generous donations – one’s an incredible gift basket of signed books and drumsticks and lots of other stuff that will be an add-on to the drum kit he gave to the son of a band employee many years ago that’s being auctioned https://www.proxibid.com/asp/LotDetail.asp?ahid=6309&aid=91369&lid=24118551&title=Mickey-Hart-s-road-used-Pearl-Drum-Kit-w-Special-Custom-Curved-Tom-Rack-ADD-ON-ITEMS-for-CHARITY.

The second item is an artist’s proof of his painting “Beam Man.” https://www.proxibid.com/asp/LotDetail.asp?ahid=6309&aid=93716&lid=24379783&title=Mickey-Hart-Signed-Artist-Proof-Beam-Man---PROCEEDS-FOR-THIS-ART-ARE-GOING-TO-HIDDEN-WINGS

For both the gift basket and the painting, all proceeds (no auctioneer’s commission) will go to “Hidden Wings,” the autism charity Mickey’s partnered with.

Own something fabulous, give to charity.  What’s not to like?

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 5:00 pm

Philadelphia roots music leaders Mason Porter will kick off their summer with a brand new release on Friday, June 3rd.  Heart of the Mountains, their second EP in two years, showcases the band’s rapid growth and momentum. A fine companion to 2015’s Key to the Skyway, the band builds on the themes of traveling and adventure, this time with an emphasis on nature and personal discovery.

The title track “Heart of the Mountains” was inspired by the writings of John Muir, American naturalist and early advocate of US wilderness preservation. Mason Porter will be releasing the EP in conjunction with the National Park Service’s Centennial celebration and will be collaborating with the NPS on several events this year.

The EP was produced by Brian McTear at Philadelphia’s Miner Street Recordings. Musically, the EP is the band’s most far-reaching effort to date, truly taking the listener on a journey. The EP starts with the up-tempo rock-grass of the title track “Heart of the Mountains” and “See America.” The mood shifts to the easy-going folk of Tim Celfo’s “Box of Answers,” showcasing the band’s signature vocal harmonies. Next follows a powerful arrangement of the traditional ballad “Shenandoah” delivered by guitarist Paul Wilkinson. The scene morphs again with the surreal textures of Joe D’Amico’s “You and I.” The album concludes with “Yosemite,” an instrumental which highlights the musicianship of each band member, especially the drumming of Evan Smoker and beautiful textures of violinist Sarah Larsen, providing a sampling of the exploratory ensemble-based improvisation that has become a cornerstone of the band’s live performance. 

Heart of the Mountains marks the sixth release from Mason Porter and continues the arc of musical development begun in 2008, and has included Thunder in the Valley, Story of the Rifle, Home for the Harvest and last summer’s Key to the Skyway.  Each new record has brought the band new fans and critical acclaim, and with growing support from AAA, Folk and Jambands radio and press, has expanded their touring base nationally. 

That expansion continues this summer and fall with dates throughout the Northeast, including a partnership with the National Park Service to celebrate their Centennial in Philadelphia in August on Independence Mall in front of the Liberty Bell.  The band will wrap up their summer touring with their second annual Midnight Mountain Music Show music and camping festival in Blakeslee, PA September 16th and 17th.

Thu, 07/07/2016 - 12:17 pm

Established in 2015, Midnight Mountain Music Show is a music festival presented by the Philadelphia band Mason Porter. This year’s festival will take place at Peaceful Woodlands Family Campground in Blakeslee, PA on September 16th and 17th.

Taking the name from one of their songs, the festival will host a variety of American Roots acts from rock to folk, country, bluegrass and everything in between. The MMMS festival will also features a chili cook-off, kids’ activities, vendors and more.

In addition to 2 nights of the host band Mason Porter, first round artist’s announcements include Tom Hamilton's American Babies, Coal Town Rounders, The Wallace Brothers Band, No Good Sister, Chris Grunwald and the Slow Response, Ladybird, Valentina and Sunshine Superman and The Groove Merchants.

2016 Midnight Mountain Music Show
September 16th and 17th
Peaceful Woodlands Family Campground in Blakeslee, PA
Tickets and details: http://midnightmountainmusicshow.com
Full weekend with camping starting at $65

Mason Porter
Tom Hamilton's American Babies
Coal Town Rounders
The Wallace Brothers Band
No Good Sister
Chris Grunwald and the Slow Response
Valentina and Sunshine Superman
The Groove Merchants

Sun, 11/20/2016 - 4:19 pm

Of all the many approaching Bay Area rock anniversaries, few can rival The Last Waltz of November 25, 1976.  Between the evening itself – the SF Opera’s set from La Traviata, the incredible range of guests, and The Band itself -- and Martin Scorsese’s epic film, it was simply one of the great music history moments ever.  This Thanksgiving will mark the 40th anniversary...

One classy way to celebrate will be the Rex Foundation’s concert with the Ramble Band (Amy Helm, Larry Campbell, Theresa Williams – once the late Levon Helms’ band) at the Fillmore Auditorium on December 3rd (well, Winterland’s long gone, after all).  What’s the Grateful Dead’s Rex Foundation got to do with The Band, you say?

Glad you asked.  The connections run deep.  Early in 1969, as the songwriting duo of Robert Hunter and Jerry Garcia were on the cusp of the creative explosion that would result in Workingman’s Dead and American Beauty, Robert Hunter spent some very special quality time with The Band’s first album, Big Pink.  You can hear the influence.

And so over recent years there’s been a considerable cross-band friendship, with Amy, Larry, and Theresa taking part in the American Beauty Project, and then this spring, when the Rex Foundation gave Levon the Ralph Gleason award in honor not only of his playing but his long involvement in community-based musical events.   Now it’s time for the Dead Heads to make them welcome…it will be a special night.

Purchase tickets here!

Wed, 03/15/2017 - 11:34 am

Dave Hunter, a visionary poster designer who has created work for Metallica, the Neville Brothers and Dr. John, Les Claypool and many more, is a gifted artist who is currently fighting for his life with brain cancer.  Fortunately, he has many friends, among them Steve Kimock, for whom he has created considerable art. 

On Friday, May 12th, Steve Kimock & Friends, featuring Steve Kimock (Zero, the Other Ones) Jeff Chimenti (Dead & Co.), Bobby Vega (Zero, Sly and the Family Stone), John Morgan Kimock (Mike Gordon), and Leslie Mendelson (Bob Weir), plus very special guests, will take the stage on Dave’s behalf.

Opening for SK&F will be the band Disreputable Few, made up of Los Angeles area musicians who recently backed Bob Weir in several appearances at this year’s NAMM show.  Divine and illuminating visuals will be by artist Jonathan Singer.  The inestimable Wavy Gravy will serve as master of ceremonies. 

There will be a silent auction and a poster art show. 

We can’t get through life alone. “Art and Soul” will not only be a joyous celebration through elevated music, but a healing experience that not only Dave but all attending can share in. 

Thu, 03/30/2017 - 1:35 pm

Steve Kimock, the protean improvisational guitarist whom Jorma Kaukonen (Jefferson Airplane, Hot Tuna) recently tabbed “arguably one of the greatest guitarists alive,” is pleased to announce a new series of concerts in June that will celebrate the release of two singles (the complete album will be released in the fall).  This current phase of songwriting comes in the aftermath of his acoustic explorations in the album Last Danger of Frost.  In the wake of Frost, he and the members of the band that toured behind it found themselves creatively inspired, and new material has been crystallizing and recorded at Bob Weir’s TRI studios. 

The first single is “Sagan,” which includes the voice of the visionary astrophysicist himself.  It is written by Steve’s son, percussionist John Morgan Kimock.  “Variation,” co-written by Steve and Leslie Mendelson, will be the second single. 

Producer Dave Schools (Widespread Panic), said of “Sagan” that “It’s an exemplary and daring experiment that takes real musicians interacting, aided and abetted by modern day processes in electronic music.  It’s very 21st century, yet it never loses sight of five people sitting in a room in a circle interacting musically… which is very rare.”  “Variation,” he said, is “where Steve Kimock takes you around the world with his deft orchestration of pan global stringed instruments and Leslie Mendelson’s vocals take you places.  And again, it’s all done within the safety zone of five musicians in a circle playing music together.” 

KIMOCK will have the same personnel as toured behind Frost – Steve, John Morgan, Leslie (multi-instrumentalist), and Bobby Vega (bass). 

Expect beauty…and fireworks.

Kimock June 2017 Tour Dates:

6/1 Thurs.         Rams Head Onstage, Annapolis, MD

6/2 Fri.              Levitt Pavilion Steelstacks, Bethlehem, PA

6/3 Sat.             Outpost in the Burbs, Montclair, NJ

6/4 Sun.            Brighton Music Hall, Brighton, MA

6/8 Thurs.         YMCA Boulton Center for the Performing Arts, Bay Shore, NY

6/9 Fri.              Ardmore Music Hall, Ardmore, PA

6/10 Sat.           Club Helsinki, Hudson, NY

6/11 Sun.          Higher Ground, South Burlington, VT

Tue, 05/16/2017 - 11:51 am

This album is called 50 in celebration of the fifty years that have passed since “Country” Joe McDonald put out his first recording in 1965.  Since you may have noticed that it’s now 2017, you will not be surprised that there’s a story here.

Though his music comes from many places, Joe came out of a folk scene that generally recorded live – and pretty quickly.  So he was shooting for a 2015 release when he went into the studio with the legendary Tubes drummer Prairie Prince and his band (James DePrato, guitar and stringed instruments; Diana Mangano, vocals; Blair Hardman, bass).  Then the music took hold, and he began to see multiple new possibilities.  He returned to the studio.  About 27 times, actually.

Here we have a veteran (in both senses) musician taking stock of himself with a long career behind him – and taking a major new approach to his art.  The lyrics remain plain and direct, meditations on aging and loss, especially lost love, and the meaning of important things.  But they often come in surprisingly lush and lovely musical beds.  It adds up to a powerful package.  In a time in which communication is buried under surreal political distortions and a cyberworld that buries us in information that ultimately tells us little of value, here is sharp, considered wisdom.


“Round and Round” –- rather dark lyrics – “People come and people go we’re born and then we die” – set to an elegant, beautiful tune.

“I Don’t Think So” – Borderline bitter end-of-love song that’s downright energetic and danceable.   

“Poppa and Momma” – combines a ripping guitar lead and a rolling rhythm with Joe’s commitment to what’s important – “Serving and working and using my mind.”

“Sadness and Pain” - opens sounding like a Pink Floyd mini-symphony before going on to talk about “walking out the door.”

“Black Fish” – a folk song commentary on Orcas – with beautiful almost-flamenco style guitar picking. 

“Silent Rage” – snarling rock song that’s as punk-angry as the Sex Pistols ever were.

“Daughter of England” – classic McDonald political fury, wrapped in a big envelope of soaring voices and guitars…she’s “sitting on a weapon of war.”

“Compared to Florence” – the pain of inferiority…made even sharper by country steel guitar licks.

“Era of Guns” – a McDonald folk song movie of contemporary American life…in the era of guns.

“I’m Free” – a folk-rock declaration of autonomy.

“Where Did the Time Go” – a waltz looking back on a long life where once we were all young stars, with good advice: “cherish today, it’s all that we know.” 

“Seashore Symphony #2” – the joker in the deck, a collaboration with Bernie Krause.  An instrumental collage of natural seashore sounds with ethereal voices and guitars.

“Roseeann” – an a-capella lullabye and farewell.

You can hear “Black Fish” and “Where Did the Time Go?” at www.ragbaby.com

Mon, 05/22/2017 - 5:07 pm

The Owsley Stanley Foundation is pleased to announce the release of Doc & Merle Watson: Never the Same Way Once – Live at the Boarding House – May 1974. “A legend recording a legend,” is how Doc Watson’s long-time bassist T. Michael Coleman describes these rare live recordings of the American bluegrass giant by counter-culture icon and concert sound pioneer Owsley Stanley (known as Bear to his family and friends).

They will be available in stores on June 23rd, but can be purchased now at www.owsleystanleyfoundation.org.

“Bear had tagged these shows as among the gems in his Sonic Journal archive, in both the quality of the performances and the quality of the sound, which is why we chose them as the first project to develop since his passing,” said Starfinder Stanley, Owsley’s son and President of the Owsley Stanley Foundation. Owsley, who died in Queensland, Australia in 2011, left an archive of over 1,300 recordings covering diverse artists and idioms. Known as Bear’s Sonic Journals, they served as working tools as he innovated his live music recording and sound production techniques, still widely used today.

This landmark recording is the first box set of Doc Watson live recordings to be released.  It captures previously unreleased material from a fertile period in Doc Watson’s career for which live recordings are rare.

The stellar performances were captured by Owsley’s renowned live recording techniques. The audio quality rivals that of his Old and In The Way album, which is still among the highest selling live bluegrass albums of all time; indeed, these shows were recorded at the same venue just eight months later.  These vivid tapes were restored and transferred to the most exacting audiophile standards, utilizing state-of-the-art Plangent Process techniques to remove subtle timing distortions created by the recording and playback devices.

The album debuted recently at the 30th anniversary of MerleFest, the premiere bluegrass festival, named after Merle Watson and hosted in Wilkesboro, North Carolina. It is available now exclusively at owsleystanleyfoundation.org as a 7 CD box set covering four nights of shows, with 32 tracks available for digital download.  The box set features a 16-page booklet of liner notes including new work by Watson collaborators T. Michael Coleman and David Holt.  A broader release, as well as audiophile format vinyl and analog tape releases of single nights from the run will follow on June 23.

About The Owsley Stanley Foundation 

The Owsley Stanley Foundation is a 501c(3) dedicated to the preservation of “Bear’s Sonic Journals,” Owsley’s archive of more than 1,300 live concert soundboard recordings from the 1960s and 1970s, including recordings by Miles Davis, Johnny Cash, The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Fleetwood Mac, Janis Joplin, and more than 80 other artists across nearly every musical idiom. All proceeds from the development of the recordings further the continuing charitable purpose of preserving Bear’s Sonic Journals and perpetuating Owsley's legacy.

To learn more, visit the Owsley Stanley Foundation at www.owsleystanleyfoundation.org or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/OwsleyStanleyFoundation/ or email us at info@owsleystanleyfoundation.org

Wed, 09/06/2017 - 5:47 pm

There’s no better way to celebrate the release of new recorded music (Satellite City, produced by Dave Schools, will be out in October—more on that later) than to go play it.

We’re pleased to announce that KIMOCK will commemorate their album release with a November tour featuring Steve Kimock, guitar; John Morgan Kimock, drums; Leslie Mendelson, vocals, multi-instruments; Andy Hess, bass.  Initially assembled to perform the music of Steve’s acclaimed solo release Last Danger of Frost, KIMOCK has catalyzed an extraordinary burst of song-writing creativity that has yielded a new record, Satellite City.

It’s gorgeous music, weaving together Steve’s exquisite tone and inspired melodies, John Morgan’s superb time-keeping as well as inventive samples and ambience, Leslie Mendelson’s elegant voice, and Hess’s rock-solid bass.

This is going to be special.

11/1 Weds.              Daryl’s House, Pawling, NY

11/2 Thur.                Highline Ballroom, NYC

11/3 Fri.                   Swyer Theater, Albany

11/4 Sat.                  Flying Monkey, Plymouth, NH

11/5 Sun.                 Met Café, Providence, RI

11/6 & 7                  Off

11/8 Weds.              World Café, Philadelphia, PA

11/9 Thurs.              Kent Stage, Kent, OH

Pre-sales from www.kimock.com will begin September 6th.  Public sales will begin September 12. 

Thu, 09/28/2017 - 8:23 am

Two years ago Steve Kimock spent a winter’s retreat in a barn with lots of acoustic guitars and an engineer making Last Danger of Frost.  To present this new music on tour, he created KIMOCK, with his son John Morgan Kimock on drums, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Leslie Mendelson, and old mate Bobby Vega on bass.  In the process they found themselves inspired to write lots more songs, which gives us Satellite City, which will be released October 27th

They went into Bob Weir’s TRI studios with producer Dave Schools of Widespread Panic and laid down nine tracks -- the title song, which sets Kimock’s splendid guitar against Leslie Mendelson’s beautiful voice in a mystical dream state, a lovely cover of “Waiting for a Miracle,” and seven more originals. 

“Satellite City,” the first single, will be available September 27th at iTunes, Amazon, and www.kimock.com.  You can hear it at https://youtu.be/7Qls1NTc22Q.   

They’ll hit the road to support the album on November 1st (see below).

Here’s the first response:

I first heard Leslie Mendelson doing "Satellite City" live with Steve Kimock last year, and I've been hoping for an album track ever since. I finally got my wish, and it's worth the wait. This is wonderful stuff.

Deborah Grabien, No Depression

Pre-order the album and receive the first song instantly:

iTunes:  https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/satellite-city/id1281172759

Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/Satellite-City-KIMOCK/dp/B0758MQXBQ/

A limited edition autographed vinyl and CD of the new release will be available directly from the band. Anyone who preorders in the Kimock Store will be automatically entered to win a chance to meet up with KIMOCK for an hour on the upcoming tour, plus 2 VIP tickets, and ultimate bundle. Pre-order now HERE: http://store.kimock.com/


11/1 Weds.              Daryl’s House, Pawling, NY

11/2 Thur.                Highline Ballroom, NYC

11/3 Fri.                   Swyer Theater at The Egg, Albany

11/4 Sat.                  Flying Monkey, Plymouth, NH

11/5 Sun.                 Met Café, Providence, RI

11/6 & 7                  Off

11/8 Weds.              World Café, Philadelphia, PA

11/9 Thurs.              Kent Stage, Kent, OH

Wed, 11/01/2017 - 11:40 am

Steve Kimock – aka “the guitar monk,” as Relix put it—needs little introduction; he’s been one of the top-flight psychedelic guitarists of his generation, a founder of the whole concept of jam bands.  He’s played with all the living members of the Grateful Dead, Jorma Kaukonen, the late co-founder of Parliament/Funkadelic, Bernie Worrell…you name it. On October 28th he’ll release a new album, Satellite City, produced by Dave Schools, and there’s no better way to celebrate such an event than to go play it.

After a November tour, Steve will return to the road for a special visit to Colorado in December, adding Jeff Chimenti on keys to the original lineup he organized to perform the music of his acclaimed solo release, Last Danger of Frost:  Steve on guitar; John Morgan Kimock, drums; Leslie Mendelson, vocals, multi-instruments; and Andy Hess, bass. That group catalyzed an extraordinary burst of song-writing creativity that has yielded Satellite City.  

It’s elegant, beautiful music, weaving together Steve’s exquisite tone and inspired melodies, John Morgan’s superb time-keeping as well as inventive samples and ambience, Leslie Mendelson’s lovely voice, and Hess’s rock-solid bass.  Now add the especially joyous chemistry between Steve and Jeff Chimenti’s splendidly inventive keyboard work, and you’ve got Steve Kimock and Friends.

In addition to the new Satellite City material, they’ll be playing the rocking dance-band groove that has characterized Steve’s work with Jeff for some years.  A splendid time is guaranteed for all.

December 15    Cervantes, Denver

December 16    Cervantes, Denver

Tue, 01/02/2018 - 4:01 pm

Skull and Roses is a celebration of community, a community generated by the music of the Grateful Dead.  Our music.

Somebody asked Uncle John what being a Dead Head was all about.  He smiled and said, “When you want to be fully alive, an individual but also tied at the heart within a rich, vibrant family, somebody who wants to have a lot of fun and probably dance, too – then you’re a Dead Head.”

Come on along or go alone, then find your way home to Skull and Roses at the Ventura County Fairgrounds April 6, 7, & 8, 2018.

Snuggled up to the blue Pacific Ocean in that funky bowl full of memories that many thousand Dead Heads can still feel, taste, and remember, there’s going to be a veritable Grateful Dead garden.

The music will run from Friday through Sunday, with various bands presenting a wide set of interpretations of Grateful Dead music.  The headliners —unique for such a situation—will play full shows on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings.  Performances will not overlap.


The Golden Gate Wingmen (John Kadlecik (Furthur, Dark Star Orchestra), Jeff Chimenti (RatDog, Dead & Co.), Reed Mathis (Tea Leaf Green, Billy and the Kids) Jay Lane (RatDog).

Stu Allen (Phil Lesh, JGB) and Mars Hotel.  (Veterans of Jerry Day in San Francisco)

Melvin Seals and JGB (15 years with the man himself).

Cubensis (Los Angeles’s own, legendary Dead interpreters with 4,000 shows under their belt.)

Also:  Moonalice (John Molo, Barry Sless, Pete Sears, Roger McNamee),  David Gans (the solo + electronica approach to the canon), Roosevelt Collier (a brilliant sacred steel player ripping up Dead music), Shred is Dead (Jerry Garcia meets Jimmy Page & such), Alligators (because a Dead festival without Pigpen would not be right), Grateful Bluegrass Boys (their form taken from Jerry’s own musical history), Shaky Feelin’ (young Jam Band approach to Dead music), Jerry’s Middle Finger (honoring the Jerry Garcia Band).

Tickets will be available in three phases: Early Bird: beginning today and running through January 29 -- $69 for a three day camping & music pass.  Outrageous Deal! – 50% off.  January 30 – February 26:  On Sale One: $83.97, 40% off.  On Sale Two:  February 27 to April 2: $97.97, 30% off.   At the Door:     $139.95.  There will also be one and two-day tickets in varying permutations.

RVs will be welcome, but there will be no RV power hookups – camping will be as it was with the Grateful Dead.

The “Shakedown Street” market will be represented in ways you never dreamed of – clothing, mind-body-spirit, artisan goods, and memorabilia will be available.  There will also be vending from cars and blankets in the campground.  The Food Court will feature many cuisines; we promise that your stomach and taste buds will be happy. Adult beverages, too.

The music of the Grateful Dead wasn’t just assorted songs – it became a full, detailed language, one that musicians can speak and Dead Heads can dance to.  It was so fertile that it generated an entire subculture, one that shows no signs of flagging.  The question before us is how the language will carry on into the next generation.  Skull and Roses will present the language largely in the day time, in the rhythm of the earth that is the bowl at Ventura.   

The spirit of the Grateful Dead doesn’t just endure; it thrives.  And in April it will blossom.