The air was crackling with energy last Saturday night as fans piled into The Warfield to witness a tribute to hometown hero Jerry Garcia. The significance of the venue was certainly not lost on the audience, smiles abounding through the crowd on the floor of the theater, which provided a home-base for the Jerry Garcia Band in the 1980s and 90s. Garcia performed at the hallowed venue 88 times, and the memories of countless transcendent nights of music have seeped into the bones of the old theater.
“If you book them, they will come,” says the fictionalized, desert dwelling Jim Morrison in “Wayne’s World 2.” Pretty sound advice when you’re booking top end talent like Aerosmith circa 1993 for an inaugural festival, but what about a band that’s never performed together?
While no longer touring with Tedeschi Trucks Band or the newly retired Allman Brothers Band, Oteil Burbridge is still finding balance between his family life and career. As one of the most recognizable bass players to crisscross the jam band web and beyond, this isn’t as easy as it seems. While he will be hitting the road this summer with the Aquarium Rescue Unit, weekend gigs and festivals are those that allow him to be with his young son and wife the most.
Conductor Matt Butler is a genius! However he got inspired to come up with this idea of improvisational conducting talented musicians was brilliant. The reason that I say this is because it is very pleasant and beneficial to all parties when musicians are happier than the crowd. Everyone wins! There are only a few inspirational times when that happens. I see it when I am at major festivals and musicians are collaborating, or I see it in super jams such as the Everyone Orchestra.
Announced today, West Asheville will bring together four of music's most creative and talented minds Thursday, July 18 when the Grey Eagle hosts a spontaneous super-jam featuring bassist Oteil Burbridge (Allman Brothers), his brother and keyboardist Kofi Burbridge (Tedeschi Trucks Band), pedal steel phenom Roosevelt Collier (Lee Boys) and local legend, drummer Jeff Sipe (Aquarium Rescue Unit).
In the late sixties and early seventies they had Cream and the Jimi Hendrix Experience, but they didn't quite have in sound and performance what Bill Kreutzmann's power trio has today. The Grateful Dead drummer was joined on stage Saturday night at the Fox Theater with the Allman Brothers Band's Oteil Burbridge on bass and Max Creek's Scott Murawski on lead guitar.