New Arrangements...

New Arrangements...

Postby rugger » Mon Oct 08, 2012 12:49 pm

I think my last Grateful Dead shows were the CSU Dominguez Hills shows in May of '90. I skipped all the iterations of the band after that for various reasons.

For my reintroduction I was lucky enough to catch Furthur on Phil's 70th bday celebration up at what used to be the SF Civic Auditorium--awesome show with many special guests and even a Mardi Gras float parade to the middle of the floor. Visually stunning to say the least from where I sat at the top row--and most recently here in San Diego last week.

One of the things that caught my attention, aside from how much tighter the band was/is (dare I say better?), and to the point of my post, were the new arrangements for some old classics. For example, the bridge in Scarlet Begonias now repeated the "look at it right" line ascending along with the guitar figure. Another would be the added measures between lyrics in The Other One. These two examples are pretty simple, straight forward additions that, while not earth shattering, were nice changes.

But last week in San Diego a couple more changes caught my ear that were a bit more interesting. The end of Eyes had a sort of counter melody that was harmonized and then a tight ending. I thought is was really cool. The others are escaping me at the moment so I thought we could list them and maybe point to their origin (Phil, Bobby, both, some sort of time frame).

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Re: New Arrangements...

Postby Pete B. » Mon Oct 08, 2012 1:22 pm

Give the New Mississipi Half-Step a listen.
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Re: New Arrangements...

Postby Tennessee Jedi » Mon Oct 08, 2012 1:26 pm

Casey Jones double time ending !
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Re: New Arrangements...

Postby rugger » Mon Oct 08, 2012 2:15 pm

Tennessee Jedi wrote:Casey Jones double time ending !


Yes! That was one of the other song changes I couldn't remember. Ending was phenomenal.

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Re: New Arrangements...

Postby rugger » Mon Oct 08, 2012 2:18 pm

Pete B. wrote:Give the New Mississipi Half-Step a listen.


Pete, I'll do that.

For the purposes of this thread, care to elaborate?

Also, I'm curious, are these arrangements from Ratdog and PAF, or is this a Furthur effort?

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Re: New Arrangements...

Postby mttourpro » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:51 pm

There are a lot of new arrangements---some stem from P and F, some from RatBob and some from Further---maybe some even from TOO and/or theDead.

A couple that I recall are Phil (but maybe this started as far back as TOO in 98 or 2000??) singin "nightfall of diamonds" repeatedly and going off from there

Pride of Cucamonga has a really huge jam over the blues section (though I guess there is no GD comparison on that one), which I don't think Phil and Frioends made so big all the time

Heard an Unbroken Chain from this past tour---they do a really long jam at the end of the "regular jam" (if you can call playing a jam in 15/4 regular) that eventually goes back into the regular jam before the ending

Bob of course with his "Shatnertization" of many tunes changed a lot of phrasing and melody flow---thank god he seems to be more or less done with that lately.

Half Step is prolly the most noteable out of them all, but I haven't really listened to much Furthur.
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Re: New Arrangements...

Postby NorthboundRain » Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:07 pm

Listening to the way the arrangements have evolved is one of my favorite things about the post Jerry years. If you think about it many of these songs have always been evolving but the recent era has been especially punctuated. I first started noticing cool subtle changes during the Furthur Festival / Other Ones era and then when the Phil & Friends quintet came along that's when a lot of new ideas started to come out along with some of the more elaborate vintage arrangements. Here is a favorite show of mine that has a 7/8 Fire On The Mountain and the most smokin' "Inspiration" I've ever heard in Terrapin. http://archive.org/details/paf2000-10-23.2361.shnf

One of the things I've noticed Furthur doing that I enjoy is when they get to the end of an instrumental section they will hold a 1 or 2 chord jam and work that for a while before returning to the next section. The solo section of Box of Rain W@ Edgefield from 9/27/2012 is a great example of this. I only got to see the Dead 3 times in high school (92, 94, 95) so I know the band mostly by recordings and rarely listen to anything post '77. Is this a technique they developed in the 80's-90's or is it a new Furthur thing?
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Re: New Arrangements...

Postby TI4-1009 » Tue Oct 09, 2012 6:53 am

Puncuated evolution?! I thought Steven Jay Gould was dead! :-)

Having watched the Dead for decades, one of the things I didn't like about the recent iterations was the "manipulated transitions". I understand it, and Phil even said something like "It took us a long time to get to the point where we could morph from one song to another. These guys are new at it, we have to structure it for a whle, they'll get the hang of it." I tried to close my eyes and just listen so I didn't see Phil giving instructions to everyone through the earpieces. It took some of the spontaneity out of one of my favorite parts of the Dead experience. Jerry also said one time that Bob didn't really care much about the transitions. It seems to be less obvious recently.

But back on topic- yeah, I enjoy the development, evolution, freshining up of the songs. And maybe the the brightest silver lining of losing Jerry is that it allowed for bringing back some of the older stuff that he had dropped and didn't want to do anymore.
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Re: New Arrangements...

Postby Pete B. » Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:57 am

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