Acclaimed reggae-rock group Roots of Creation is proud to release their acoustic version of the Grateful Dead’s “Standing on the Moon,” marking the song’s 30th anniversary. The accompanying music video features live liquid light artist Brain Davidson, giving the stripped down song a nod to its psychedelic roots.
The new single was released earlier this year in celebration of Jerry Garcia’s birthday week. Roots of Creation honored the rock legend by performing the new song at the inaugural critically acclaimed by Rolling Stone, live-streamed Dazed Between festival which saw 2.5 million viewers. Dazed Between Festival was a fundraiser for the Grateful Dead’s non-profit the Rex Foundation. “Standing on the Moon” debuted, along with a few other RoC songs, on the festival Spotify curated playlist. Reflecting back, Brett Wilson, founder, guitarist and lead vocalist for Roots of Creations states, “‘Standing on the Moon’ holds a special place in my heart. I always have to choke back tears when I perform it. If I close my eyes when I belt it out I always envision Jerry Garcia standing on the moon looking down at humanity and smiling. If you look closely at the album cover, you might find him doing just that.”
“Standing on the Moon” originally appeared on Roots of Creation’s 2018 Billboard charting album Grateful Dub: A Reggae-infused Tribute to The Grateful Dead. Brett recalls the following story, “Errol Brown (album co-producer and mixer) also recorded Bob Marley's classic ‘Redemption Song’ and took a similar approach to our song. As the story goes, since ‘Redemption Song’ wasn't working with the band, he and the team suggested to Bob to do it solo acoustic ... and history was made. He gave us the same advice for our song, however we ended up adding layer by layer in the album version at the halfway mark and that was the version that appears on Grateful Dub.”
For the 2020 acoustic release, Roots of Creation stripped down “Standing on the Moon,” removing all instruments except vocals and acoustic guitar giving a glimpse at an unedited live studio performance done in one take. Serendipitously Brett placed the iPhone on a music stand and press record, later using the footage for director and live liquid light artist Brian Davidson’s music video. Brian and Brett met virtually on instagram when COVID put touring to a halt and Brian would tune into RoC’s live streams. Inspired by their music Brian reached out for a collaboration leading to the new music video. Leveraging his art form made popular in during the 1960’s psychedelic light shows, the light show uses layers of colored mineral oil with alcohol that move over a projector lens to produce changing color patterns. This technique combined with an archive of animated Grateful Dub album artwork by Catt Gould, brought the new re-mixed acoustic version to life.
Brian Davidson says of his accompanying video, “This was a fun and personally meaningful project for me. My goal was to create a liquid lightscape that would connect not just with the subject but also the emotion and aesthetic of the song. Above all though I wanted to do justice to Brett's stunning vocal performance. You can hear how genuinely he connects with Hunter's words. You’ve got to have a certain soulfulness to pull off a Jerry ballad and Brett’s got that Jerry soul for sure. It was an honor to collaborate with him on a song so near and dear to my heart.”
Jon Philips, founder of Silverback Music, co-producer of Grateful Dub, friend and confidant of the band reflects, “Wilson's version is one of the best vocal performances of the song I have heard outside of the official Grateful Dead version. This particular cut, not found on the full length Roots of Creation Grateful Dub album, is a B-side worthy of recognition by any Deadhead or fan of acoustic music. Wilson reaches deep and delivers the ghost of Garcia and then some with exquisite guitar and vocal prowess, and now accompanied by a liquid light video that ties in a perfect psychedelic touch. ‘Standin’ on the Moon..... I'd rather be with you!’”
The video is available here: https://fanlink.to/SOTM_MUSIC_VIDEO on Vevo/Youtube, Tidal, AppleMusic & more. Additionally in celebration of the new song Roots of Creation is offering a free MP3 digital download of “Standing on the Moon” when you connect to Facebook and Youtube via the Fanlink. Grab a copy of Grateful Dub on vinyl or CD plus more RoC merch and music here: rootsofcreation.com/store.