Category Archives: Flashbacks


We’re at the end of this hellacious Victim jam…. I probably shouldn’t have taken that second palm sized puddle at the end of the first set… I think I was trying to show off… Bad idea… Victim has creeped the living shit out of me and I’ve seen at least three people, obviously feeling just like me, walk away briskly with that too high and terrorized face… Like they just saw a ghost or somethin’… That same demon was trying to get me to leave this place too… I wonder if people that aren’t junkies are equally as freaked out by this tune… If the Boogey Man owned a Country, Victim would be the National Anthem… It’s like the Chariots of Fire for early freaked out runs towards the exits… I’m just glad it’s ending and I was able to stay put… For now at least… The introductory notes of Crazy Fingers begin and they sound to me like the four fingered Hand of Hope is winding the crank of a gigantic Music Box to full tension… The pressure builds and builds and builds and once it’s released this incredibly slow moving piece seems to unwind at a snail’s pace against the incredible tension that was wound into it’s initial ascent… Crazy Fingers was definitely not one of my top choices for the moment but tonight it feels like an entirely new experience… Tonight it feels like a Life Raft that was sent to me from Garcia… It feels as though I’m looking through a psychedelic high school yearbook… Incredible imagery throughout with Deep and Redeeming quotes that seem to infuse New Life into every segment of the experience… The Victim left me in this state of mental and spiritual depravity and despair as I self analyzed my current condition… Victim is like a magnifying glass that enables you to look through the crowd and spot every junkie quickly and easily… Crazy Fingers is completely restoring the small idea deep within me that I may get out of this mess one day… There is some Hope… Initially the hope is a bit muted…. Life May Be Sweeeeeter for this I don’t know… Seeeeeeeeee how it feels in the end… In my state of absolute LSD induced psychosis I realize that if they were ever gonna make a documentary film on the mating rituals of a slug, Crazy Fingers could by all means be the intercourse music… I begin to discover the absolute beauty of it all in an instant… While I struggle to make sense of the lyrics I look to Garcia’s face and he’s singing it as a Father would sing a lullaby to a newborn baby girl… The depth of his expression and apparent emotion tell me that I should be looking far deeper into it all… Billy is in deep meditation… Wouldn’t be surprised if he got some sleep during this one… Mickey has had the evil face on since Victim and seems as if he may be somewhat responsible for pushing the whole thing just fast enough that it doesn’t stop completely… It constantly seems like the rest of the band won’t make it to the beat yet regardless of how far they lag back they seem able to take the last step or two to the beat as rapidly as is required to arrive on time… I’m beginning to appreciate this tune like I never have before… As Jerry solos it’s as if his notes run out ahead of the band before finding a place to rest as the procession catches up… It’s a musical game of tag and I don’t think I ever heard it that way until this very moment… As Garcia goes reaching for The Gold Ring…. And he tries… Phil begins to absolutely pummel my mind with an amazing series of notes that seem to be winding up the Music Box all over again… The tension is ratcheted up to full capacity… The space between the notes seem to say as much as the notes themselves… I can clearly see the various forms of Something New just waiting… To be born… There is a quality to the jam that causes me to feel as though the things of life that have been awaiting me are in the birth canal of the universe and currently struggling through a long and challenging labor… I’m starting to feel like the second puddle was definitely the right thing to do… The hope goes from a once muted thought to a confident proclamation…. Feeeeeeeeeeels like it might be alright!!!

May Lady Lullaby sing plainly for you soft, strong, sweet and true…

Dean Sottile (pronounced So Tilly)

I’m really looking forward to getting to Chicago! Frank Zappa gets almost as much play at my house as The Dead so a band I’m definitely going to see while I’m there is Roister! Not only do they have one of the best Show Posters I’ve seen for Chicago but they have some serious talent including two veterans of Zappa’s touring band, guitarist/vocalist Ray White and bassist Tom Fowler, Ike Willis not to mention Brian “Honky Fubu” Swizlo on keys! There’s a host of other musicians that will be showing up from Zappa’s bands and I’ll meet you there for sure!!! Show starts at 10 but they’ll be playing until the wee morning hours I believe. Tickets are a steal at $20 and it’s at The Abbey Pub.



We’re somewhere during Space… Garcia is playing around with his midi and it sounds like a dolphin looking for a piece of ass… I’m right on the outskirts of having complete control of my thoughts… If only this Space would end… Phil keeps making the face that Phil makes… You know the one… Like he’s saying “I don’t know what’s gonna happen… I don’t know… Maybe I know… Nope… I don’t know…” He’s Gone preceded Drums so this should be a Weir tune… From deep inside The Space confusion I can hear Weir hinting at the Watchtower… The Space finds a completely silent moment… It’s so quiet amongst so many people, I feel as though I’m almost afraid to say anything… I really want to scream WATCHTOWER!!!!!!! Letting everyone know that I know… I don’t because I figure that would make me an asshole… It’s OK to know all by yourself… A guy near me breaks the silence by screaming “BROKEN DOWN PALACE”… What the fuck is he thinking??? Weir’s riffs signal the hurricane of sound that is The Watchtower… The place comes alive in an instant!!! Phil still has the “I don’t know what’s coming” face on… The jams are as hard rockin as they could be!!! Every time it seems like the jam might break down Garcia pulls this string that seems to raise the sail of this Magnificent Ship that instantly rights its course… Weir sings to the ceiling and it seems as though his eyes are constantly in the shadows of his brows… Anybody that ever thought Bob was looking at them while he was singing must have had seats that hung from the rafters… He wasn’t looking at you… Ever… As the Watchtower winds down the first notes of China Doll can be heard hidden somewhere underneath the closing notes of The Watchtower… It all seems incredibly perfect… The story of this Doll begins to unfold with so much meaning… For the first time I innately realize exactly what the Hurdy Gurdy signals and completely understand my need to abide it… The music is haunting yet absolutely beautiful… As Jerry sings “Stranger Ones have come by here” you look around and spot each one of them… You intuitively seem to know what’s going on with people around you… That guy is nervous… Those aren’t his seats… He’s hoping nobody comes back for them… That girl is thinking about her sister… That dude is trying like hell to control his high but Puddles don’t come with steering wheels… He can’t abide it… Everyone’s Soul becomes transparent as the Music completely lifts the veil on every insecurity and ego in the room… It’s Fuckin Wild… My nipples are so hard you could hang a shotgun across them… The entire band is perfectly orchestrated with Candace in command of the lighting accompaniment as the sweet harmonies blended together and piercing through the darkness as we all can’t help but to think in our minds (Holy Shit there is so much beauty in this darkness and I totally GET IT!!!) and then the moment comes…. “Take up your China Doll…. Take up your China Doll……… It’s Only fractured….. Juuuuuuuuuuuust a little Nervous from the fall………. Laaaaaaaaaa La Laaa La La La La Laaaaaaaaaa!!!” You realize in that moment that you’re not totally broken… Only fractured… You couldn’t stop the tears if you tried… Just a little nervous… It’s gonna be alright…

Another moment of complete surrender to the process of Character Development brought to you exclusively by The Grateful Dead….

Dead To The Core,

Dean Sottile (pronounced So Tilly)
The Official Home of Unofficial Grateful Dead and Music News
Grateful Dean on Facebook
@gd50th on Twitter