Posts Tagged ‘Donna Jean and the Tricksters’

New music on the tunes page

Sunday, July 27th, 2008

I had a nice set at a ski resort in Idaho yesterday: Brundage Mountain Jam II. Beautiful day in a splendid spot. Donna Jean and the Tricksters were the headliners. Klyph Black joined me for about half my set, and Tom Circosta sang harmony on a couple of songs.

Klyph and I played a really really good “Bird Song” together. Rather than make him play with the machine throughout, I used the loop in a different way: grabbing a bit of music and then building on it for a while, then deleting it and starting something new. The result was a really nice jam with several peaks.

Listen to “Bird Song”

This performance and many others are archived on the tunes page.

Grateful Dead Hour #1032

Sunday, June 29th, 2008

Week of June 30, 2008

Part 1 31:50
Grateful Dead 2/26/77 Swing Auditorium, San Bernardino CA

Part 2 24:05
Grateful Dead 2/26/77 Swing Auditorium, San Bernardino CA
Donna Jean and the Tricksters (unreleased studio track)
Donna the Buffalo, Silverlined

The Grateful Dead went to southern California early in 1977 to record an album with big-time producer Keith Olsen, who had made a huge name for himself by producing the 1975 breakthrough album by Fleetwood Mac. The Dead had some very interesting new material, plus a new arrangement of an old favorite, “Dancin’ in the Streets,” and Bob Weir’s powerful interpretation of Reverend Gary Davis’ “Samson and Delilah,” which debuted when the Dead returned to touring in June of 1976 after a 20-month hiatus. This 2/26/77 show was the first concert the Dead played after spending several weeks in the studio, and I think you can hear it in the clarity and dynamics of their performance. This was the public’s first exposure to a pair of Grateful Dead masterpieces – Hunter and Garcia’s “Terrapin Station,” which opened the show, and Bob Weir and John Barlow’s “Estimated Prophet.” The rest of the set is pretty damn fine, too, as you’ll hear over the next few weeks.

Also in this program are two tracks from a new studio CD by Donna the Buffalo, Silverlined, and a sweet new studio single of “Till the Morning Comes” – which originally appeared on the Grateful Dead’s 1970 studio masterpiece American Beauty – from Donna Jean and the Tricksters. From the DJ&T web site:

Dear DJ&tT-heads:
As you may have heard, the band recently recorded the song “Till the Morning Comes” – call your local station and tell them to play it! Meantime, we’re in a situation in which we REALLY want to include it with the debut CD, but since there are physical CDs out there in stores and such, we can’t, immediately. Sooo this is what we’ve worked out. If you buy the digital album online, you’ll get the new song automatically. If you buy the CD in a store after July 1st, you can download “Till the Morning Comes” for free. You should find a coupon in the CD that tells you what to do – and if not, email us at, and we’ll tell you how to do it. If you just want the new song, you can buy that one too as a download. Either way, remember to support live music of all kinds, especially Donna Jean and the Tricksters!

Support for the Grateful Dead Hour comes this week from Grateful Dead Productions, announcing the release of Road Trips volume 1 number 3. Summer ’71 has a full CD of music from July 31 ’71 at the Yale Bowl and a full disc recorded August 23 of ’71 at the Auditorium Theater in Chicago, plus liner notes and rare photographs. There’s also a bonus disc with two more tracks from the Yale Bowl, and eight more songs from August 4 and 6, 1971. Information, cover art, reviews and message board are online at

Dead to the World 6/4/08

Wednesday, June 4th, 2008

Me and Kettle JoeDonna Jean and the Tricksters
Till the Morning ComesDonna Jean and the Tricksters (unreleased)

Not Fade AwayGrateful Dead (“Skull and Roses”)

Hey Bo Diddley->
I’m a Man->
I’ve Seen Them All->
– Grateful Dead with Bo Diddley, Dick’s Picks vol. 30 (3/25/72 Academy of Music, NYC)

Press conference 4/24/08 San Francisco CA, announcing the donation of the Grateful Dead archive to the University of California at Santa Cruz

The Preacher and the Slave
Casey Jones the Union Scab
Utah Phillips, We Have Fed You All a Thousand Years

Aimlessly DriftingBravo Johnson

Nice article on Donna Jean

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

Article (with a lovely photo) in today’s San Francisco Chronicle:

Donna Jean Godchaux grateful to sing again

Godchaux-Mackay dropped out of music entirely after she left the Dead and only made her first, tentative steps back into the field after her children were grown. “I was very inspired,” she says. “I started writing again. It was time.”

She first met the Tricksters at a New York concert on the 10th anniversary of the death of Jerry Garcia. “I was really impressed with their musicality,” she says, “and also what great people they were.”

She was also pleased to note the band had moved beyond being merely a Grateful Dead cover act and the band’s songwriters developed some strong original material of their own. “By the end of that event,” she says, “we were talking about hooking up and playing a few gigs.”

Donna Jean and the Tricksters have three gigs in the Bay Area this week:

Wed., 6.4.08, 9pm: 12 GALAXIES, 2565 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110
Thurs., 6.5.08 9pm: MOE’S ALLEY, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz, CA 95065
Fri., 6.6.08, 9pm: SWEETWATER STATION ON MAGNOLIA, 500 Magnolia Ave, Larkspur, CA 94939

Grateful Dead Hour #1027

Sunday, May 25th, 2008

Week of May 26, 2008

Part 1 29:43
Donna Jean and the Tricksters
Railroad Earth, Amen Corner

Part 2 26:12
Grateful Dead 1/7/78 Golden Hall, San Diego CA

New CD from one of my favorite bands, Railroad Earth, and a long cut from Donna Jean and the Tricksters.

Support for the Grateful Dead Hour comes this week from:

The 10,000 Lakes Festival, July 23 through 26 in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. Phil Lesh & Friends, Mickey Hart Band, Dark Star Orchestra, The Flaming Lips, George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic, Michael Franti & Spearhead, and over fifty additional acts.

The All Good Music Festival and Campout July 11 – 13 in Masontown, West Virginia featuring Phil Lesh & Friends, Widespread Panic, Gov’t Mule, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Medeski/Scofield/Martin & Wood, Keller Williams, Dark Star Orchestra, Mike Gordon, Derek Trucks & Susan Tedeschi, Tea Leaf Green & dozens more, with no overlapping sets.

The Lazy River Music & Arts Festival June 27 – 29 near Chicago featuring the music of Son Volt, Rusted Root, Banyan with members of Umphrey’s McGee, EOTO, New Monsoon, ekoostik hookah, Mr. Blotto, and dozens more. It’s the first Chicago-area festival to offer overnight camping.