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Sunday, July 31

Today is the birthday of Jerome "Jerry" Garcia and while I Miss Him More than Ever, I Know He's Smiling: An editorial by Greg Heffelfinger

Today is the birthday of Jerome "Jerry" Garcia and while I Miss Him More than Ever, I Know He's Smiling: An editorial by Greg Heffelfinger

Every great writer in music history has written about Jerry Garcia. He's an icon for millions recognized by people all over the planet. His time on earth was short but he accomplished more than most could in ten lifetimes. He lived it no way but his own. Not many people can say that. The music that he plays touches my soul like no one else ever will. He was known as Jerry G of the Grateful Dead. At the same time, he wasn't married to the Grateful Dead. Part of his charm would be that even between tours, he had to play. He truly was a musical vessel that will be missed for as long as I can see. He started in humble, somewhat tragic circumstances and overcame that to be adored by so many people it made the naturally outgoing man, a little nervous. So many estimated prophets called for his attention and he always just called himself as a guitar player. There is a quote from the eminently quotable man," I would be happy playing as a nobody at some Mission St bar for the rest of my life." To know that he was so empathic and so conscious that he stayed in a analogue to an abusive marriage in The Grateful Dead just to keep paying the bills for people, says everything. I'm not here to praise him to death but I think we should all acknowledge a special being was here for awhile and dusted off those strings so many times for us. His lived life, his way, and I'm grateful for it.

Rock Scully always said that all the skeleton imagery freaked him out a little. He would never take a picture in a graveyard, for example. He was a real person not just a guitar player. I love little tidbits about him because he showed only so many cards on stage even though he gave all to us when he was done. His sound and charisma drew so many to him. And the taping policy, because he used to travel and tape bluegrass bands,let him leave it with us. Mother McCree's Uptown Jug Champions might be one of the most influential unknown bands ever. Because the man practiced all the time and sometimes literally slept with his guitar, I know he just wanted to get the music out. I feel like he's looking down on his little brother Bobby and smiling because there are so many roads to find what you are looking for. There were so many roads to ease his soul and he went down one that took him early. Thankfully we had him here for awhile. 
Happy Birthday Jerry

Written by: Greg Heffelfinger

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