2/21/95 Delta Center, Salt Lake City, UT
Being a Deadhead in the 1990’s was similar in many ways to being a New York Mets fan. Since I am a fan of both I feel uniquely qualified to comment. Needless to say, a great deal of time is spent hoping and praying for any small kind of miracle to happen but more often than not your band/team disappoints you. Despite all of the repeated heartbreaks, you try to remain strong and loyal but deep down your spirit is slowly breaking with each let down. And just when you think you can’t take it any longer – BAM – your heroes surprise you with other-worldly magic that keeps your dreams alive.
In 1995, Deadheads witnessed a precipitous and alarming decline in Jerry’s appearance and musical performance. He often seemed lost onstage and both his singing and guitar playing was frustratingly inaudible. Despite these problems there were also moments of greatness that gave us hope. These precious moments included the debut of Unbroken Chain (3/19), the raging double-time finish in Iko Iko in Philly (3/18) and this towering version of Black-Throated Wind in Salt Lake City (2/21).
With an acoustic guitar strapped on his shoulder, Bobby charged into one of the very best versions of BT Wind since its comeback. The finale is one for the ages as he throws himself into the microphone, growling the lyrics while Jerry triumphantly wails away with his trademark licks. Hearing this kind of magic is incredibly uplifting and makes all of that pain and misery worth it…well, almost!
In the immortal words of Tug McGraw, “Ya Gotta Believe.”
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