If you were in attendance or watching the web stream of the Grateful Dead's Fare Thee Well concerts over the 4th of July weekend, and were wondering about the music that was being played during the intermissions, we have the answer: Circles Around The Sun!
Circles Around The Sun - "Gilbert's Groove"
Circles Around The Sun - "Farewell Franklins"
Circles Around the Sun — a group headed by guitarist Neal Casal (who's been in Ryan Adams' backing band the Cardinals, Chris Robinson Brotherhood, and Phil Lesh & Friends) with Adam MacDougall, Dan Horne, and Mark Levy — recorded the music that was set to the visuals provided by Justin Kreutzmann (son of Grateful Dead drummer Bill Kreutzmann). Above, you can hear two tracks, "Gilbert's Groove" and "Farewell Franklins," which will be included on a two disc collection titled Interludes For The Dead.
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Casal talked about "Gilbert's Groove":
It was recorded in one lucky take on the first of our two-day kamikaze recording sessions to create five hours of music for the Dead's Fare Thee Well concerts. The working title for this song was "Fakedown Street," but we eventually opted for the classier "Gilbert's Groove" — a tip of the cap to Gilbert Shelton, the legendary artist who created the artwork for the Shakedown Street album cover.
Casal also talked to Relix about how the musical project with Justin came about and the creation of the album.
We share a similar sense of gallows humor, and we just hit it off very quickly and became fast friends during the chaos of Move Me Brightly. That led to Justin asking me to compose the score for the Bob Weir documentary The Other One and, after that, he asked me to do the music for the screens during the Fare Thee Well shows...
This was all of us going deeply into our Grateful Dead influence and bringing it forth, and trying to walk that fine line between being reverent and staying within the sounds and staying within that color palette. There is a palette of Grateful Dead musical colors that is there to work with and if you go too far outside of it, then it doesn’t feel familiar. It doesn’t feel right, but if you just mimic or if you just kind of paint by numbers, then it’s too close to the source and somehow, it undermines the mission. So there’s this really fine line that we tried to walk and a small window to try to fit ourselves through. The sensitivity of these musicians is what made it successful. We did it all in two days. We did it all live. There are no overdubs. We just caught lightning in a bottle.
Casal spoke with Billboard about the comparison of "Farewell Franklins" to the Grateful Dead's song "Eyes of the World:"
That song is a tip of the hat to the "Eyes of the World" vibe; not exactly like the song, but just as a feeling, the breezy feeling about "Eyes of the World" that was always an important pillar in their catalog. He developed this new, simple theme he was playing over and over again. We all just stood there silently watching and listening to him do this and realized he was not finished yet, so we put our instruments back on and started another theme and developed the second movement of the song. It happened on the spot and we went on for another 10 minutes into an entirely different feeling and sound and ended up with a 25-minute piece of music out of just trying to give Grateful Dead fans a little taste of "The Eyes of the World."
Via: Rolling Stone