Monday, April 26, 2010

05/09/05 Dark Star Orchestra @ Toad's Place, New Haven, CT

06/14/76, Beacon Theater, New York, NY
Set 1: Cold Rain And Snow, Mama Tried, Row Jimmy, Cassidy, Brown-Eyed Women, Big River, Might As Well, Lazy Lightnin' > Supplication, Tennessee Jed, Playin' In The Band
Set 2: The Wheel, Samson And Delilah, High Time, The Music Never Stopped, Crazy Fingers > Dancin' In The Streets > Cosmic Charlie, Help On The Way > Slipknot! > Franklin's Tower, Around And Around
Encore: U.S. Blues
Filler: Second That Emotion
Notes: Special guest Rob Barraco on keyboards
For a few weeks in the spring of 2005, I delivered Arabic newspapers to various mosques and restaurants in the Tri-State area. It wasn't the greatest gig, but I could work whenever I wanted and it paid roughly $10 per hour. Come to think of it, it wasn't half bad driving around Conencticut, listenign to music.

On one such jaunt, I managed to rope my roommate into coming along for the ride. We leisurely traversed the Nutmeg State and stopped at a local bar or two to soak up the local ambiance.

Eventually the route took us to New Haven, the Ivy League enclave. Enamored by the collegiate charm of the town, we stopped for a bit to explore. Then I noticed some crunchy individuals lining up outside Toad's Place, where many of my favorite bands had played.

Much to my delight, Dark Star Orchestra was in town and I decided to drain the remains of my checking account and take a little break for some soul soothing Dead tunes.

My friend is more hip hop than hippie, so he whiled away the hours tagging up New Haven's alleys and bar bathrooms, but he soon caved and joined me at the show, which he still refers to when anything remotely related is brought up in conversation.

The Grateful Dead's keyboard slot was known as the "Hot Seat" since many of the individuals who tickled the psychedelic ivory are no longer with us. The "curse" even extended to high ranking tribute acts, and DSO had recently lost their keyboardist to a heart attack. Filling in was erstwhile Dead member and bandana afficando, Rob Barraco.

The highlights were "Dancin'" and "U.S. Blues" and the fact that the original Dead show took place in New York City. Seeing my decidedly anti-hippie rommate get down to some Dead was icing on the cake.

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