This is a call back to a previous post (https://roymusicusa.com/2019/05/25/pictures-from-an-exhibition-the-instruments-of-rock-roll-at-the-met-part-iii/) where I talked about the custom made guitars of Jerry Garcia. Just recently while Dead & Company were playing here in NYC at Citi Field, John Mayer played Jerry Garcia’s famed Wolf guitar. Wolf has been on display at The Met as part of the museum’s Play It Loud: Instruments Of Rock & Roll exhibit.
I always thought that great guitars are functional art and Wolf is a great example of this. Wolf was created first and foremost as a tool for Garcia to make music with. It’s creator, Doug Irwin, went beyond the basic parameters of a guitar’s function by making it an aesthetically pleasing object to look at. But if Jerry felt that it didn’t deliver as a guitar, it never would have seen the light of day. That’s why I was glad to hear that it was brought out of it’s glass case and actually played recently. Guitars should be played. Wolf went back on display at The Met the next day. near the galleries that showcase The Met’s collection of artifacts from ancient Egypt. There you can see beautiful objects whose function from long ago are a bit of a mystery. What were these beautiful things used for? I wonder if sometime in a possible future, someone will be looking at Wolf in a museum, admiring it’s beauty and reading the plaque next to it and wondering, “What the fuck is a guitar?”.
The two clips below are courtesy of nugs.tv who have been putting out on You Tube the opening songs from each set of Dead & Company’s summer tour. The first set opener (go to 6:40 for the actual start) is the Dead classic St. Stephen. As an old deadhead, that is a impressive out of nowhere choice. That plus the appearance of the Wolf guitar must have had the fans going nuts.
Dead & Company: Live at Citi Field, NYC 6/23/19 Set I Opener –
Equally impressive as a second set opening number was Lady With A Fan > Terrapin Station.
Dead & Company: Live at Citi Field, NYC 6/23/19 Set II Opener –