Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Phil Lesh on the Grateful Dead

"All we did was steal what jazz musicians did and apply it to rock 'n' roll. If we didn't do it, someone else would have," he says.

That's Phil Lesh from this interview about the Dead's forthcoming tour. His comment reminded me of the reaction of Deadheads when Branford Marsalis first sat in with them on March 29, 1990.

The Deadheads were blown away by Branford's brilliance, and by the fact that he seemed to play along so well, even though he openly stated that he had never heard the Dead's music before.

And all I could say was, "Duh!" Of course Branford fit in with the Dead; any jazz musician would have, because the Dead applied jazz methods to rock and roll, which is admittedly harmonically and rhythmically simpler than jazz, and thus a piece of cake for jazzers!

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