third night at the rocks, so sad...5 nights next year guys...please..it was BEAUTIFUL weather, sunny with some wind...got in line early again looking to secure some tarp space, success! row 20/21 just left of the soundboard, sound was PERFECT...i was digging the day show vibe
we all callled the samson opener, figured we'd get our sunday sermon..sounded really good, intro wasn't as lame as some of the more recent ones, nice way to kick off the culminating ceremony..the platypus has been continually begging for a reuben and cherise, during the tuning beforehand i thought i heard a hint of the song so i told him this might be the time..lo and behold it was, a joyous moment for everyone, especially platypus...nice jam afterward that finds its way to miracle, rocky transition, but overall a decent version, john (for the millionth time this tour) was getting excellent tones..something was a surprise to me but really cool, showcasing johns talents outside the realm of grateful dead..looks like rain was a highlight of the night for me, bob was nailing the vocals, and johns final solo was fantastic, although cut off a little bit short by bob, you could see him getting ready to hit one out of the park but bob stepped in and starting howling..the next one was a call for the night by me, way overdue, tennessee jed, pretty rockin, the solo section of the song was done very well, the entire place was bopping side to side..bird song was another we were highly anticipating..not as long and deep as some of the other ones they have done but good nonetheless, excellent jeff/john blending...they transitioned pretty nicely into lovelight, phil leading the way, and they had the place flying...the crowd energy was awesome, really for the entire set, they were there to play, doing their job but also taking the risks and in this case we were reaping the rewards those risks can pay off...
very lax setbreak, still light out everyone was glowing, got to meet up with a pretty gal i went to college with, then come back and "talk to telinski" with the roadtripper crew, we were all hanging out for this night, with great folks all around..i think we need bumper stickers that say "i tarped at red rocks", that whole thing is one weird scene, but hey, when you play by the rules there, you can find yourself standing in one of the best sounding spots in one of the most incredible venues in the country
2nd set what is up to bat?? the "jam" screamed truckin..it was really good though, bob was strong with the vocals, even giving us "ain't it a FUCKING shame", nice outro jam phils bombs weren't as loud as they could have been (considering how many were dropped the night before) but i could hear the lightning coming thru, and smokestack it was, really excellent, bob was howling like a champ, john was all over the solo, meandering to and fro..and this finds its way to our first (most likely only) new potato caboose of the tour..was okay, phil sounding like he was straining a little bit, and overall it didn't have as long of a backend jam as normal but they took the risk of a smooth transition to born cross eyed, it wasn't perfect but not awful, they were losing the groove at times and russo slid into a section of the song a little early once but they caught that one pretty quick...the wharf rat that follows suit was very well played..john was doing justice both vocally and instrumentally, putting the necessary emotion the song requires..as things wound down phil started moving around a little bit more and we get our 2nd unbroken of the tour...it was great, the lyrics to this song have a special meaning to me, and i'm a phil freak, so i was all about it...the middle section was pulled off very well, the transitions weaving in and out..i feel like john plays this song the way phil wish jerry would have--you can even hear old rehearsals where jerry shows no interest in learning the song, and phil is adamant about getting it down..shakedown street was a prime choice and it was excellent, one of the best i've seen them do, the entire band just cranking away..standing on the moon was a treat, bobby doing s well with it, i dig the emotion he can subtly put into some garcia songs, and we had a first quarter hanging in the sky..a big help>slip>franklins to close the set multiplied the already outrageous crowd energy by about 10 zillion..wasn't thrilled to hear bob sing so much of it but whatever, like i just said, i like him on SOME garcia songs..the slipknot was nice phil throwing down a few bombs, together they hit some really nice grooves and charged into a franklins that really kicked ass..one of those versions that remind you how much you love the song
was hoping for the double encore but we got the brokedown, very nice calm way to bring the magical weekend to a close..phil expressed his love for red rocks, and his love for us, the community
this was my favorite show of the tour overall...they sounded fantastic, and looked like a confident unit of excellent musicians
it was sad to walk out of there knowing i wouldn't be back for maybe another year, i love the energy the venue has to offer, and the music furthur is willing to bring there..as i sit here in the hard rock hotel in vegas ending this, i am delightfully happy to know i can stuff my face in my pillow and get GOOD sleep for the circus tomorrow night