Can Someone Explain The Appeal of "Jam Bands" Like The Grateful Dead to me?

Benjammin

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2009
Messages
19,434
Reaction score
13,184
And this is one of the groups we preferred to listen to when we indulged back then:

2233-fs-moody-blues-in-search-of-the-lost-chord-320kbps.jpeg

now theres a band it takes drugs to sit through :lol:
 

twst1up

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2010
Messages
4,399
Reaction score
6,166
420 + Jam = Total bliss.
When I was in a band all we did was jam.
Couple of beers, spliffage etc. and freaking loud guitars...
Can't ask for more than that.

Earthless, San Diego, U.S.

‪Earthless - Flower Travelling Man (Part 1)‬‏ - YouTube
‪Earthless - Flower Travelling Man (Part 2)‬‏ - YouTube

Samsara Blues Experiment, Berlin, DE (GER)

‪Samsara Blues Experiment - Singata Mystic Queen‬‏ - YouTube

:applause:**** man...earthless kicks ass, i only discovered them in the past year. i was on a european space rock kick at the time and totally groovin' on 35007 and monkey3 and colour haze....omfg...those bands jam as well, however, i'd have a hard time putting them in the "jam band" genre that we're talkin' about here re: the OPs guides as what constitutes a "jam band"

For myself, and this conversation I direct the OP to warren haynes, especially the early mule with allen woody...talk about smokin'!

I have a feeling alot the guys here that aren't into jambands aren't into 'em 'cause they feel they lack heaviness and balls. i understand, the GD aren't a "balls" kinda band. that's what drew me into govt mule and then later, the allmans et.al. I personally feel, IMO, the best "jam band" out there is the black crowes. it's ashame that the only thing that gets airplay are 3 songs from their 20 yr. old debut.

I'm rambling...wife brought me to cleveland for the wkend for my bday. spent the day at great lakes brewing company. about to leave for a place called the winking lizard with hundreds of beers on the menu (i'm a total beer geek/homebrewer). then, by the grace of androids ability to guide through the public transit system here, i'm off to see the chris robinson brotherhood...no doubt there will be plenty of jamming
 

Duane24

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 27, 2009
Messages
1,799
Reaction score
704
I see a theme of drugs coming up in this discussion.

I don't use drugs anymore but I still love the hell out of my jam music because it's what I like. I love music.

The problem with the jam scene is that there is most defiantly people there that like drugs a lot more than they like music. They ruin the atmosphere, for sure. But there are people who use drugs responsibly, but also are fully committed to the music, which is how i used to be. I'd say the number of folks there because they absolutely just love the music far out weighs the ones there to party. So don't let a few bad apples spoil it for you.

I'd say I'm living proof that you don't need to be stoned to listen to the dead, you listen to them because you love them, and you're listening to a group of guys exploring music, doing something brand new (at the time) and listening to a group of guys who genuinely just love music...all kinds of music at that, since their influence is very very very broad. All that wrapped together makes me love and appreciate what I'm hearing and makes me really into the end result that's playing through my speakers.

Don't like jam music, that's fine. But appreciate what you're hearing. Something may sound like endless noodling to you, but you try and keep a jam as coherent as the dead or phish or something of the like...it's not easy, they are highly talented musicians. Try playing a song with a million chord and key changes... and have everyone in the band be aware of the next guy is going...takes a certain set of ears to do that.
 

tanner1

Banned
Joined
Jul 22, 2011
Messages
114
Reaction score
85
this not those hippie ass sh!t jam bands like the dead..

enjoy..
[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fu42q_rq2Y&feature=related]‪Umphreys McGee JaJunk JITD 2005‬‏ - YouTube[/ame]
 
Joined
Feb 24, 2011
Messages
5,672
Reaction score
7,949
Thanks tanner1 for posting this and getting Umphrey's Mcgee on my radar.
I haven't heard of them 'til now.....great players. :thumb:
 

moodyedge

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2009
Messages
3,654
Reaction score
2,387
been listenin to some jams Ive recorded......man....thing is Id have to learn all this stuff as if it was a cover because I have no idea what I was doing, nor do the others.

Playing for 25 mins then try to cut that into bits to make a song....or 2 or 3......Tough task, Not sure where to start with it. Seems everytime I listen back through them....I get a different take on it and a different idea for one part and another part.............riffs spring to mind from a year ago too......weird...it's endless. Playing is the easy bit.



Jamming :thumb:
 

River

Senior Member
Joined
May 19, 2008
Messages
57,237
Reaction score
91,377
:applause:**** man...earthless kicks ass, i only discovered them in the past year. i was on a european space rock kick at the time and totally groovin' on 35007 and monkey3 and colour haze....omfg...those bands jam as well, however, i'd have a hard time putting them in the "jam band" genre that we're talkin' about here re: the OPs guides as what constitutes a "jam band"
You're higher than a kite.
 

No. 44

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2010
Messages
403
Reaction score
624
From the look of it there's definitely some "head cutting" going on in this thread. Not with guitars, of course, but it's still head cutting...

:hmm::laugh2::hmm:
 

Engel

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2009
Messages
7,878
Reaction score
9,766
I do like all the classics, the studio hits. The jam stuff? Not so much. I think you have to be high to appreciate a 17 minute guitar solo.
 

Duane24

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 27, 2009
Messages
1,799
Reaction score
704
Garcia's own "Sugaree" on his first solo album is absolutely killer. Better than any Dead song, imo. That album is a classic.

that was a dead song before he made it solo. Loveeee sugaree.
[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TNjDNEpFB5Y]‪Grateful Dead - Sugaree (1976-08-04) pt. 1 of 2‬‏ - YouTube[/ame]


Always thought this was a really beautiful tune too.
[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQFeuAbLHro]‪Grateful Dead - Althea 03-28-81‬‏ - YouTube[/ame]

and this ones their tribute to their friend janis joplin, really sad, just another really pretty song.

[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9sfjx7uW3Sk]‪grateful dead - Bird Song - Three From The Vault‬‏ - YouTube[/ame]

"All I know is something like a bird within her sang
All I know she sang a little while and then flew on"

"If you hear that same sweet song again, will you know why?
Anyone who sings a tune so sweet is passing by"

very sweet, the album "Ladies and Gentlemen the Grateful Dead" has a slowed down version of this song, its defiantly my favorite, very moving tribute.
 

EasyAce

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2010
Messages
20,661
Reaction score
24,873
I do like all the classics, the studio hits. The jam stuff? Not so much. I think you have to be high to appreciate a 17 minute guitar solo.

You do?

[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5z9HxLN3DnA]Cream, "Spoonful" (live in Oakland)[/ame]

[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=91XHUivFMrU]The Allman Brothers Band, "You Don't Love Me/Soul Serenade"[/ame]
 

VictorB

Nothing left to do but smile, smile, smile
Super Mod
V.I.P. Member
Joined
May 31, 2007
Messages
49,099
Reaction score
158,240
Another fanastic Jam!

[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ikhn1_wsOGc&feature=related]‪Allman Brothers & Donald Fagen Beacon Theatre 3/17/11 "Down Along the Cove" & "Shakedown Street"‬‏ - YouTube[/ame]
 

space

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2009
Messages
883
Reaction score
557
I love the Grateful Dead.
There is not another band that hits on all Genres of music.
Country, Blues, Jazz, Folk, Classic Rock etc.
They covered a lot of other bands songs, which in turn opens up a whole new area to explore.
They revitalized songs that for the most part would have ceased to exist in modern music.
The way to truly experience the Dead is thruough live concert recordings.
The Studio stuff just doesnt have the spark.
The experimentation in sound they helped develope is now near "Industry Standard".

Just My .02c
T
 

moodyedge

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2009
Messages
3,654
Reaction score
2,387
This not English, either.

well eyee, by eck ladd,

Ya digg?

:laugh2:

I do like all the classics, the studio hits. The jam stuff? Not so much. I think you have to be high to appreciate a 17 minute guitar solo.

Theres more to it than guitar solos. My bands jammed for 30 mins+ with no real solos....

Some notes yes, a few lead licks yes, riffs yes, chords yes and you use all that to basically sing/shout/talk with the guitar, like a musical narration of the jam......long solos....nar....that can get boring pretty fast....Ive never been on drugs so maybe thats why :hmm:

If a solo comes out then it was meant to be...If not then same again. Many of the jams start with a riff then just snowball...who knows where it leads...thats the fun part.... You just kick it at the top and it rolls down the hill until it gets to the bottom, any damage caused on the way down is out of my control :cool:
 

Skintaster

V.I.P. Member
Joined
May 15, 2010
Messages
20,530
Reaction score
44,432
well eyee, by eck ladd,

Ya digg?

:laugh2:



Theres more to it than guitar solos. My bands jammed for 30 mins+ with no real solos....

Some notes yes, a few lead licks yes, riffs yes, chords yes and you use all that to basically sing/shout/talk with the guitar, like a musical narration of the jam......long solos....nar....that can get boring pretty fast....Ive never been on drugs so maybe thats why :hmm:

If a solo comes out then it was meant to be...If not then same again. Many of the jams start with a riff then just snowball...who knows where it leads...thats the fun part.... You just kick it at the top and it rolls down the hill until it gets to the bottom, any damage caused on the way down is out of my control :cool:

True, and I can appreciate that. But it's a different experience to jam with others when you're playing, and to be entertained by others jamming when you're the spectator. What's often awesome and fun to play if you're the "jammer" or whatever, is dreadfully boring to watch as an audience member.

Anyway, that's my experience. Obviously there are a lot of people that like watching jam bands, and if I could somehow watch them and only catch the moments of improvised brilliance, I'd probably dig that too... But it seems like you have to be prepared to sit through a bunch of stuff to get those moments sometimes. :)
 

CosmicLP

Junior Member
Joined
May 19, 2012
Messages
8
Reaction score
4
This seems to be an appropriate thread to raise from the 'Dead' -- ha get?

Anyways...

Skintatster...

To "get" the Dead, or even Phish, you need to view them as jazz influenced rock bands. In fact the Dead purposefully went out with a Miles Davis mentality, specifically quoted as Miles, in their approach.

First, they travelled with anywhere between a 150-200 song songbook at their height. How many bands today can even remember that many songs, let alone tour with them? Not bad for a bunch of stoned dudes to remember that much, eh?

Second, in their jams they were notorious for seamlessly weaving from one song into another -- all along with tempo, time signature and key changes in between. Easier said than done, and the Dead on most nights were smooth as silk doing so.

How many bands are today do that? Or can even pull it off? Yeah, again not many at all unless you're talking a jazz band.

Was their sound folky and country? Of course it was. But it also had the depth of all sorts of influences and style drawn from all the members influences. For example the bassist Phil Lesh was an accomplishment trumpet player and studied composition in college before joining the band. Hmmm..not quite the stupid hippie who did know what he was doing. In fact quite the opposite, many of their segues were very well thought out with strong musicality.

The Dead's spirit was to never play the same set list twice and interpret each song differently and let them grow and evolve over time. Just like a jazz band.

As far as today goes, only Phish really pulls off all the above at a top shelf level which is why they can lock down Madison Square Garden with sell outs for as long as the Garden gives them time.

This ain't your power chord, let's practice our twenty songs, call a jam an extended solo over the same chords and never play out of the box metal band we're talking about here. This is the spirit of jazz played as rock and roll to the masses.

But whatever, different strokes for different stokes folks. If you don't like the songs, that's cool, they are the root of any improvisation so I can understand it may be hard to dig a band if you don't like the songs. But at least as musician you should take a look at what the Dead and Phish accomplish as musical units and maybe you'll get some respect. If you have any friends with a decent collection, tap them to find you a good show and listen with an open mind :slash:
 

Latest Threads



Top