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Movies and Pop : Garcia Shows Red, White, Blue Stripes

April 19, 1993|STEVE HOCHMAN

Anyone who questioned the propriety of having members of the Grateful Dead sing the national anthem at the San Francisco Giants' opening game last week should have seen the head Dead, Jerry Garcia, on Friday at Pauley Pavilion. The concert by his side project, the Jerry Garcia Band, was about as American as a rock show gets.

As has been the case in recent years, Garcia--looking relatively trim and fully recovered from his bout with severe exhaustion last summer--used this band to fly the flag of American rock, soul, country and gospel, from "Money Honey" to Earth, Wind & Fire's "Shining Star" (with the Beatles' "Dear Prudence" and his own "Deal" as ringers).

For better or worse, Garcia and his six musicians took everything at pretty much the same middling, shuffle pace on the first of their two nights at Pauley, with little of the swoop-and-glide dynamics of a good Dead set--although Garcia's flights of shimmering guitar work provided plenty of Dead-like vibes for the young crop of Jerry's Kids. Garcia may not be for everyone, but he proved again that he's as red, white and blue as any musician this side of Lee Greenwood.

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