Saturday, June 30, 2007

Trolling the Underground : MSG 4-27-1971

In my most recent Trolling the Underground posting at Under the Bridge I, I illustrated two of the joys of collecting unofficial concert recordings. The first was being able to hear a show that I had no way whatsoever of seeing first hand. The other was hearing, whenever I want to, the pairing of two acts that don't work together normally, and had just a couple live experiences shared between them.

To kick off this new blog with my first Trolling the Underground, I'm going to explore a variation on that second theme. That's being able to explore the inevitable strange pairings that occur on stage from time to time, like the night the Grateful Dead were joined onstage by the Beach Boys.

This was a weird little event that came in the middle of the show, when the Dead were having a pretty good night. When the Beach Boys joined them, the setlist deviated far from the Dead's already chaotic norm. They did two songs together, Searchin' and Riot in Cell Block #9 (before which the virtues of a new instrument - the Moog Synthesizer - were extolled), when the Dead took a break to go do whatever it was they did during breaks. Things sounded pretty normal for the Beach Boys during that break, where they took over and played Good Vibrations and I Get Around. When the Dead returned, things got fun again.They did three more songs together; Help Me Rhonda, Okie from Muskogee, and Johnny B. Goode. Amazingly enough, it's the second of those three songs that gets pulled off the best. Help Me Rhonda is just painful to hear, and Johnny B. Goode illustrates how two bands can each do a particular song well, but can't do it worth shit when they're all trying it together. It was simply too many cooks for that particular broth.

So it's pretty obvious which song I have to share. How can you pass up the Grateful Dead and the Beach Boys together doing Okie from Muskogee??

After the Beach Boys left, the Dead continued, and made a little more Dead history by performing one their most famous renditions of the blues classic Turn On Your Lovelight. It's a classic showstopper filled with jams, but what made it famous was Pigpen's speech in the middle in which he condemns masturbation and helps a guy and girl in the audience hook up. It's a riot to listen to, so I wanted to share it also, but alas it's too large for online storage, coming in at about 20 minutes.

I hope you'll all enjoy this little piece of weird concert history. Let me know what you think!


Miz UV said...

Hey hey! I'm first! Nice-looking site and it has a feed. Good job. :)

Natsthename said...


Lucyp said...

Probably not the best place to mention this as there does seem to be many Grateful Dead fans about these 'ere parts, but i just don't have a clue who they are. I do own a best of the Beach Boys CD though, very summery, especially that All Summer Long song.

Joe the Troll said...

Stick around, Lucy. We'll learn ya.

O' Tim said...

Lucy (et al): There will certainly be a heavy emphasis on the Dead at this blog, being as two of the admins are major Deadheads. That said, know that this incarnation of Under the Bridge was established for music enthusiasts of all stripes (okay, no hardcore polka or porn metal. Outside of that there are no locks on any genre's doors).

We're an open-minded bunch, welcoming to those who find music appreciation (and performance, for you virtuosos/wannabes out there) to be a big part of the joy in their life.

So thanks for stopping by, tell all your friends, and keep the good vibes flowing Under the Bridge.

Joe the Troll said...

"okay, no hardcore polka or porn metal."

Porn zydeco and smutty Gregorian Chants will be allowed.

I intend to have as much variety as possible in my TtU posts, but of course it will be limited to those things that I would want to download in the first place!!

I've heard one voice in favor of bringing back the TtU contest, BTW. What do you all think?

O' Tim said...

Porn zydeco and smutty Gregorian Chants