Grateful Dead guitarist Jerry Garcia is considered one of the best muscians of all time that unfortunately left us too soon at the age of 53 back in 1995. In an interview with Relix back in 1980 he explained why people love or hate the band.
Jerry Garcia explained why people love or hate Grateful Dead:
“Well, that seems pretty cut and dry (laughs). I’m aware of that phenomenon, I guess. What happens is that someone turns their friends on to us in the same spirit or sense that they would turn their friends on to pot. They turn them on because they have a good experience and they have a good time.”
“It used to be real frustrating. I’ve talked to fans about this who have said, ‘Jesus, I invited 20 of my friends to this and you guys played awful!’ (laughs). That stuff used to happen to us all the time. We’ve gotten to be a lot more consistent. So now, those people can bring their friends and at the very worst, they’ll get a nice, professional show.”
“But I’m aware of that mechanism. The thing is that it’s an ongoing process. Our audience now has a very large number of 15, 16 and 17 year-olds. They’re kids who are obviously not from our generation. But are every bit as enthusiastic about what we did as any of our audiences have ever been. Our audience is larger now than it’s ever been. It’s more vital now than it’s ever been, and we’re happenin’.”
Do you relate to an audience of 15 and 16 year-olds today the same way you related to the kids that came to see the band in the ‘60s, when you were a lot closer to that age yourselves?
“Cause they’re the same kind of people. They’re people that can dig what we’re doing. And it’s hard not to like someone who likes what you do.”
The Grateful Dead
The Grateful Dead was an American rock band formed in 1965 in Palo Alto, California. They were known for its eclectic style. Which fused elements of rock, folk, country, jazz, bluegrass, blues, gospel, and psychedelic rock.
These various influences were distilled into a diverse and psychedelic whole. So that made the Grateful Dead “the pioneering Godfathers of the jam band world”. Besides, the band was ranked 57th by Rolling Stone magazine in its The Greatest Artists of All Time issue.