1st time seeing these guys play. Here's the show they "recreated"
12-06-92 Compton Terrace Amphitheatre, Chandler, Az. (Sun)
Here Comes Sunshine, Greatest Story Ever Told, FOTD, Me & My Uncle> Maggie's Farm, Althea, Masterpiece, Deal
Samson, Crazy Fingers> Uncle John> Playin Reprise> Drumz> Last Time> China Doll> Throwing Stones> NFA
last "H. C. Sunshine": 02-23-74 
Then DSO added on their own random encores:
Weather Report Suite
My Sisters and My Brothers
My buddy Dan and I walked in during the FOTD and immediately recognized it as a late '80s or early '90s show by the tone. The only DSO I'd ever heard before was a copy of one of their recreations of an early '70s show. I was hoping to catch a show from an era I didn't attend, but had to settle for the old familiars. Say what you will about DSO, but they definitely sound pretty close to the GD. Rob Barraco was on keyboards, and he added a bit of legitamacy to the proceedings, although I'm still ambivalent about the using of previous shows setlists. It's a fun gimmick, but robs the suprise element from the show. The post-show encores were my favorite part of the show, primarily because I didn't know what was coming.
They jammed the place pretty full. About as big a crowd as Ratdog drew when they played there two years ago. It was funny to see a Wharf Rats table and a whole bunch ( 50 or so) of new generation tour rats. Hippie culture among the under 30 set is somewhat passe in Seattle these days, so I got a kick out of seeing kids still living the dream. I was talking with this girl I met and told her I'd probably see her at WSP next week and she said she wouldn't be there because she was on DSO tour. Strange that there are people who would follow the ersatz GD when Phil is out on the road. I suppose that the tour itinerary and cost for DSO may be easier, but I just can't see myself following a cover band.
The light set up was pretty decent, the sound was good, although they should have turned up fake-Jerry a little more if they really wanted to replicate the GD. On "Deal" the guy was raging, but they left him down in the mix when this was one of his spotlights. They were set up on stage in the same configuration as a 1992 show would have been. I'm wondering if they change their stage positions around to match whatever show they are doing, like those '70s shows where Phil was on the right and Jerry on the left? Since it was a '92 show, fake-Donna didn't come out until the encores. The JGB show closer was nice. I suppose if I knew some kids who'd never gotten to see the GD, I'd tell them to check these guys out to get a close approximation of the sound of a GD show. Other than that however, they really wouldn't get an idea of what the scene was like. It's just echoes of a bygone time. The kids would do better to tap into some band that is creating their own tunes and playing a little closer to the edge.
Good for DSO though that they've carved out this niche in the touring landscape. They all seemed like pretty down to earth folks. At intermission, fake-Phil came outside and talked with a bunch of folks just like he was back in the lots of yore.
Personally, I had fun, but got myself a little too ripped and ended up playing the reality version of "Dude, Where's My Car" when I woke up this morning. You guessed it, like a dumbass, I left it in a tow zone, and now have to drop another $120 to get my car back tonight when I'm through with work. Boy, sure wish they had a "fake tow lot"! Ouch....
I doubt that girl was following DSO for the music, I would figure it's where her people/scene is, so that's where she is too.
That also was a basic element to the later-day GD scene; people into the SCENE more than the music. So I guess DSO recreates that part of it too; ratty losers following the band!
You say you knew what songs they were going to do? Do they hand out flyers or something, or did you actually know the set list from that particular show?
It's funny how hard DSO gets hit around here. To me they're a harmless thing. A little creepy maybe, and sad for some, but if you don't take it too seriously, who cares what they do?
Thanks for the review.
Someone duped me a copy of that show the week after they played it, so the setlist was more or less hardwired into my brain. I remember being excited that Here Comes Sunshine was back in the rotation and wishing I'd been in Arizona to see it.
I agree that if you don't take these guys for anything more than they are, it can make for a decent trip down memory lane.
Did they botch the opening to HCS like in Compton? They forgot to turn on the mikes...yikes.
Nice review, Dave.
>>>I'm wondering if they change their stage positions around to match whatever show they are doing...
I'm seeing DSO on Monday Oct. 1 when they roll thru Arcata, CA. It'll be my 5th DSO show, I think. I much prefer their "original setlists" to their show re-creations -- but have had a lotta fun every time I've seen 'em.
The previous night, 9/30, I'm going to see Headband sitting in with John Mullins (guitarist from ekoostik Hookah) at the Red Fox Tavern in Eureka. Other special guests are also going to sit in, supposedly the other 2 "Robs" from DSO (fake Bobby and fake Billy) according to the local rumor mill. I'd be totally psyched if fake Jerry showed up too.
Fake wrecking crew rules. So does the fake fluff.
Uh folks.... I believe the proper term is "John the lead guitarist" (rather than fake Jerry). And I think you were referring to "Lisa" when speaking of "fake Donna". She prefers just "Lisa" and I'm sure her friend, "real" Donna prefers her to be addressed that way too. And it's "Kevin" not "fake Phil" although respectfully, I can't speak for Phil on this one... but I can speak for myself. How about just "Kevin" folks... or "the bass player".
and regarding: "That also was a basic element to the later-day GD scene; people into the SCENE more than the music. So I guess DSO recreates that part of it too; ratty losers following the band!"
guess again... Although we have people who tour with the band (most of them are jet setters), there isn't enough of them to have a lot scene. They might have a scene enjoying each others company at the restaurant down the street though. A great many people have forged good new friends through DSO. The few places there is lot scene are indicative of the area and that's fine. These people are there for the music ... so far. The "scene" is very comfortable and we have very few problems with "raty losers following the band". On top of that I would say the DSO crowd in general is a fairly well educated bunch consisting of all ages.... but you don't have to be a college graduate to be welcome. You just have to be respectful of one another. One way to do that is by calling a person by their name.
one more thing...I think Rob B. is fine with "headband"
Thanks for the real name refresher Dino..
I use Faux in lieu of Fake...
Its less harsh
Loser is harsh..
Java Dave you did a good job playin the Faux Loser...leavin your car in a tow zone...
Word of advice Dino, you tell people what your sensitive spot is and they'll only aggravate it more, especially here on the zone.
Thanks for the advice. I realize the danger. But I also have confidence in the good nature and civility of the general Phil Phan (I'm one too) to know where I'm coming from. I will never knock anyone for there opinion of DSO if they have actually come out to see a show so more power to Java Dave for giving us a try. I also feeI, if you read between the lines, that he kind of enjoyed the show (minus the car episode) but he may have been afraid to come across as enjoying it too much for fear of getting slagged himself.
For the people who may be new to seeing us or never having seen us, I can understand how they may imagine us as "fake". I can admitably see that from the outside, our kind of approach to the music may seem bizarre. What many come to realize, if they are open enough to give us a chance, is that we are in fact quite real people with our own individuality who have a great love of Grateful Dead music. We just choose to play the arrangements in a more traditional style because, very simply, that's the way we like to play it. We aren't trying to be the "real" Jerry or any of the others. We just like playing this music and we like using the more jam oriented songs as a launching pad to dive into our own creativity. We try to tap into the eternal source of the universe where all this music comes from .... and every now and then we get there. Many people know it and have felt it. It's hard to argue someone out of a feeling once they have experienced it first hand. There isn't anything fake about that. That's why they come back.
BTW... Personally I love and understand Phil's approach to this music. He's seeking out new ground and new approaches to this music while trying to turn on young songwriters to the depth of the well that the Grateful Dead tapped into in the hopes of passing it along. More power to him. He played with the Grateful Dead for thirty years. Why would he want to cover the same old ground by trying to play this music in a more traditional method. For us the traditional approach is still fresh. We are still going through our own self imposed schooling. We choose to learn from history to better understand the future. I think one of the things the Grateful Dead taught was to be open to new ideas and keep an open mind. If this is true can you (those who have not given us a chance) be open enough give us a listen.... live....as Java Dave did. If that chance is given then I, along with the others, will be much more open to any critisism thrown our way.... as long as you call us by our real names. ;)