Greatful Biscuits and Gathering of the Vibes: What to Expect?
We don’t rely on some cute fluffy marmot to tell us when Spring is coming. Do we get our confirmation with the first flowers attempting to bloom from beneath the thawing ground? Is it the scent of Earth making it’s return through the cracks in our windows? No, the most reliable indicator to the coming spring season is found in the festival flyers and lineup announcements currently flooding your news feed and social media channels. One of the biggest announcements so far this year came from the Gathering of the Vibes music festival being held in Bridgeport, CT. As you may have heard, jam-fusion pioneers The Disco Biscuits are collaborating with former Greatful Dead members Bill Kreutzman and Mickey Hart for the headlining performance. Such a notion, once limited to the pillow talk of dreaming hippies, is coming into practice at this summer’s 19th annual GOTV event.
We would really like to know what the fans think about this. Both of the collaborators have reputably obsessive followings, and it’s safe to say that this performance won’t resemble anything either have seen before. We’re kind of scratching our heads on this one ourselves, especially when we read ex-Dead member Mickey Hart stated in a recent Rolling Stone article that “The Disco Biscuits seem to prefer trance/space, moment music. Bill and I are quite familiar with the genre”. Who knows, maybe patrons will get a “Truckin” drum and bass improv jam? Despite that all parties involved are prominent figures in the jamband universe, and that The Greatful Dead are significant forefathers in this American music movement, we are talking about two completely different worlds. Don’t mistake our bemusement with apprehension though. The musical result of this collaboration will be interesting to say the least. Aron Magner, keyboardist of The Disco Biscuits, makes a valid point in the same article when he says, “though our music is quite different, the ethos is the same – both on the improvisational level as well as in the sense of community that our bands have created with our fans.” Everyone seems to have confidence in the experiment, and that’s the most important thing. In a recent interview, bassist Marc Brownstein stated that the Biscuits were going back to their rock n’ roll roots, instead of relying so much on the techno concept. That statement has held up so far, with their last three runs being regarded by fans as their best performances in years. GOTV will only be the 2nd festival appearance outside their own event since 2011. Coincidentally, it is Kreutzmann and Hart’s first performance together since 2011, marking a legendary return.
Gathering of the Vibes is heavily rooted in the jamband community, in fact it’s gates have witnessed countless pieces of history from dozens of musicians. Wavy Gravy, a festival icon since 60’s era counterculture, has been the festival’s MC since the first event. This year’s initial lineup is a wet dream for fans of this genre, a 4-day long lucid wetdream. Among a plethora of varying musical acts, this summer’s bill will feature performances from jam giants Leftover Salmon, Umphrey’s McGee, Moe, Dark Star Orchestra, and Widespread Panic. Throw that Biscuits/tGD icing on the cake and this will mark one of the biggest jam-related events of the year, with more artists to still be announced. Between the headliners and several other acts on the lineup, you can expect to hear whole lot of Dead covers over the weekend. One question remains: Is there enough room for “Eyes of the World” and “Story of the World” in one set? Maybe we’ll have a Ghostbusters versus Gozer scenario on our hands; less evil and potentially world ending, but equally epic by some standards. Don’t cross the streams!
Tickets, full lineup, and Info can be found here. Other acts include Ziggy Marley, Edward Sharp & the Magnetic Zeroes, John Fogerty, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Keller Williams’ GreatfulGrass w/ Jeff Austin & Reed Mathis, Kung Fu, American Babies w/ Tom Hamilton, late nights sets from EOTO, Dopapod, Digital Tape Machine, Deep Banana Blackout, and much more to come!
Posted on April 1, 2014, in Festivals, Jambands, Video and tagged aron magner, bill kreutzmann, dark star orchestra, gathering of the vibes, jambands, leftover salmon, marc brownstein, mickey hart, Rolling Stone Magazine, the disco biscuits, the greatful dead, umphrey's mcgee, widespread panic. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.