We just completed a glorious10 shows on the west coast.
the last two of the tour are still very fresh on the brain. The crystal ballroom in Portland, oregon and the showbox in seattle. The crystal ballroom is a true VISUAL pleasure. I opened for the cheese there in 1998 and I remember my amazement when I first stepped in the room. First and foremost, the floors are spring loaded. Meaning they literally bounce with just one person jumping up and down. Once you get a bunch people jumping at the same time its pretty amazing. it was a friday night so the energy was high going into the show. At the end of the first set we were joined by scott law on guitar for 3 songs. The keith moseley “reggae rocker” sirens, the new badass gibb droll arranged instrumental "giant gratefruit", and the dead classic "eyes of the world" complete with a heavy metal versions of 1972 lick (if you're a deadhead, you would know it if you heard it). standing in-between scott law and gibb droll was like some sonic dream. each player has that tone that directly energizes my senses to the point of my eyes involuntarily closing with ensuing hallucinations. Folks in boulder and in portland are lucky as they get to experience those two tones on stage at the same time in the band "MLSD" moseley, law, sipe and droll. Once in boulder at the fox around thanksgiving and on new years eve at the wonder ballroom in Portland, Oregon. The crystal ballroom was (i think) an old ballroom dancing room back in the day. The dead along with many other bands from that era played there in the late 60s. It sat dark for many years and was reopened in the 90s by the mcmenamins. A company that has about a dozen super cool restaurants and venues around the portland area. All of which serve the most incredible tater tots (I am not making this stuff up, however I have not done any official fact checking). The venue, I believe was designed for lawrence welk type of big bands that sound great with no microphones or speakers. Once you add those in with some volume, the room can get tricky (sonically). As long as you are 20ft. In front of a speaker, you'll be fine. Just bounce and enjoy the dozen murals and the giant chandelier that looks like a huge million dollar glass pipe. The next night was at the show box in seattle. Pike place was hoppin on this very sunny saturday. I strolled around listening to a cappella gospel as well as a dude playing the saw very very well. This was the last night of the tour so everyone in the band was approaching the material with vigor and strength. We were lucky to be in the presence of danny barnes. An incredible song-writer, banjo player and all around inspiring positive soul of a dude. We met through yonder mountain string band and have kept in touch. We have been doing one of his songs "cornpone sally and her haybaling wagon wheels". I asked him to sing it but he said he’d rather hear me sing it. So we split verses along with a crazy "porta potty" and his version of beck’s "loser". It was incredible to play with him and I think I speak for the band when I say he truly inspired us all. The whole west coast tour was a joy. I woke up excited to play music with keith, gibb and jeff. It has to happen again. Hopefully on the west coast. KW