Stormy Mondays: Jerry Garcia and John Kahn ’86

This week we have another personal favorite from the GD world, one of my earliest tapes, one I couldn’t live without for many years: Jerry Garcia playing acoustic at the Ritz in NYC in January of 1986.

The apocryphal story I was told as a kid was that Garcia had played one date of the tour without John Kahn and immediately called up his old friend who showed up before the next gig. There’s no truth to it, but I love the tale, and in my young mind, it explained the great feel of this gig, the fun of it and the super strong voice (even if Garcia stumbles on a line here and there). Much of the material is what’s to be expected, but I especially love the Simple Twist of Fate in the second set, and the rare Masterpiece followed by Run for the Roses to close the first set—that Dylan material creeping into the mix more and more as the band members geared up for the shared tour the next summer.

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