Wednesday, July 19, 2023

Jerry Garcia and Robert Hunter’s “The Wheel” live and in the studio

At the beginning of "Space" at the Grateful Dead concert at the Berkeley Greek Theater on Friday, 13 July 1984, I heard a telltale phrase, turned to the stranger next to me, and said, "They're gonna play 'The Wheel.'" Live, Jerry Garcia and Robert Hunter's song always had beautiful meandering introductions. Today, I listened to The Good Ol’ Grateful Deadcast episode about Garcia’s 1972 solo album “Garcia”. Co-producer Bob Matthews tells the story of the song's writing and recording: Garcia and drummer Bill Kreutzmann first improvised a basic track Matthews happened to record, and for lack of space, lyricist Robert Hunter wrote words while holding his notebook up against a wall. (Andrew Shields, #111words, 19 July 2023)


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