RTD 2.0 played our second half of our East Side takeover at the Watermark Bar and Grill. Having torn down the Cadieux Cafe the night before, we were ready to lay a second night of gooey Grateful goodness on our fans.
The evening (birthday-eve for our super fan Stephanie, with cake for everyone) began at 8 with Althea, featuring tasty licks and vocals from our new man on stage right, Matt Cole. Bill took over vocals for Black-Throated Wind, handed them back to Matt for a beautiful So Many Roads, and Dave took us to the Promised Land to end the short, lower-volume set.
The second set began with Sugaree, and featured the first medley of the evening, Dear Prudence into The Wheel into Unbroken Chain. After we'd finished, we'd played about 90 minutes of music, which was just 10 minutes short of what we'd play in the epic third set.
A "sandwich of sandwiches" set, we played Truckin' and He's Gone inside The Other One, which was, of course, inside Crpytical Envelopment. But rather than stop for a breather, we took it furthur into Eyes of the World, played with the 73 ending (as we always do!). Eyes melted into ANOTHER sandwich, built around Playin'. We were so giddy with excitement in Shakedown, we teased both Stayin' Alive and Another One Bites The Dust - both un-rehearsed and un-planned. Another segue into Uncle John's Band brought us back home to the end of Playin'. We ended the evening with OMSN, because it was.
This two show run has shown us the potential our new lineup has to present sparkling 4-part harmonies, dig deep into improvisation, and present composed songs with expertise and an element of surprise. We can't wait to see what we get into next - and we're glad you're on the bus with us. Until next time!
2-29-2020 Watermark Bar and Grill, St. Clair Shores, MI
I: Althea, Black-Throated Wind, Row Jimmy, So Many Roads, Promised Land
II: Sugaree, Dear Prudence>The Wheel>Unbroken Chain
III: Cryptical Envelopment>The Other One>Truckin'>He's Gone>The Other One>Cryptical Envelopment>Eyes of the World> Playin' In The Band>Shakedown Street*>Uncle John's Band>Playin' In The Band
E: One More Saturday Night
* Stayin' Alive and Another One Bites The Dust teased
It was an auspicious debut for Raising The Dead 2.0. The new crew, featuring original members Bill Butler, Max Katz, and Dave Martin were joined by Detroit jam band veterans Matt Cole (formerly of Deadicated) and Joseph Waldecker (formerly of People Movers). This supergroup weaved its way through two sets of jam-filled goodness, including a 35-minute Liberty>Scarlet>Fire, and a second set Dark Star>St. Stephen>The Eleven>Drums>Samson that went EVERYWEIR. A hundred or so of our friends came along for the ride, and the reviews were unanimous.
One strength of our new lineup is the ability to feature 4 lead singers. In the first set alone, we shifted the lead around the band constantly: Dave (Stranger), Bill (Candyman), Matt (Dire Wolf), Joe (Mission), Bill (LL Rain), Matt (Liberty), Scarlet (Dave & Matt), and Fire (Joe). The harmonies really shined on Candyman, Dire Wolf, Fire, Samson, and Franklin's Tower.
It's hard to pick a favorite moment of the show, so we won't - the entire show will be published here soon. But first, join us at The Watermark in St. Clair Shores tonight (February 29) as we complete our leap weekend East side shakedown with a totally different show. More gigs will be announced very soon!
Cadieux Cafe, Detroit, MI 2/28/2020
I: Feel Like A Stranger, Candyman, Dire Wolf, Mission in the Rain, Looks Like Rain, Liberty>Scarlet Begonias>Fire On The Mountain
II: The Music Never Stopped>Dark Star>St. Stephen>The Eleven>Drums>Samson and Delilah, Help On The Way>Slipknot!>Franklin's Tower, Bird Song, Don't Ease Me In
These Men in Black will be stealing your face very soon - coming to the Cadieux Cafe on February 28, the Watermark Cafe on February 29 - and lots more to come! Save the date for these soon-to-be-announced shows - March 27, April 4, April 20, and May 9. We can't wait to show off what this new cocktail of musicians has mixed up for you!
With Matt and Joseph on board, Raising The Dead are eager to share what we've been working on in rehearsal, preparing for our gigs at the Cadieux Cafe and The Watermark in February. We set up a few cameras and made a crispy board recording in our rehearsal studio, and here's the result: 33 minutes of live Dead to melt your face. Enjoy, and we'll see you soon.
2019 was an exceptional year for Raising The Dead. With the dawning of the new decade comes change, and we are excited for what the future holds. The announcements for our group today are threefold:
First, our brother and lead guitarist Jake Vasquez has chosen to move on from our group to pursue new musical adventures. We wish him all the best, and can’t wait to see him on metro Detroit stages for many years to come!
Second, after an entire year of searching and with invaluable help from fantastic drummers Stephen NyQuist, Brent Nagy, Nick Serocki, and TW Coleman, we are thrilled to announce our new drummer, Joseph Waldecker. Most recently, Joseph made a name for himself playing with Michigan bands including Feral Ground, People Movers, and Nina and the Buffalo Riders. He comes to RTD knowing almost every tune we play (and there's a lot!) and taking to new material with confidence and swagger. One rehearsal was all it took to know he was "the guy!"
Third, our new lead guitarist will be none other than the one and only Matthew Cole! Matt has been working his Cosica guitar and enviable top-notch Jerry rig with Deadicated, and after a hiatus is ready to rock again. Matt brings with him a deep knowledge of Master Garcia's every twist and turn of melody. Close your eyes and you might forget it isn't 1977 again!
As always, Bill, Max, and Dave are ready to rock, and can't wait to see the places we'll take our new ensemble. Thanks for joining us on the bus. No matter where we end up, at least we're enjoying the ride!
This new lineup will debut at the Cadieux Cafe on February 28, and continue at the Watermark on February 29. We hope to see you there!
We had one more great Saturday night at the Watermark. Thanks to everyone who came out and raged with us. We return on February 28.
12/7/19 Watermark Bar and Grill, St. Clair Shores, MI
I: Jack Straw, Row Jimmy, Mission in the Rain, Candyman, Cassidy, Brokedown Palace
II: Brown Eyed Women, Estimated Prophet, Liberty, Music Never Stopped>Sugaree>Music Never Stopped, Ripple
III: Unbroken Chain, Victim or the Crime>Dark Star>St. Stephen>The Eleven>Drums>Space>Truckin'>He's Gone>Goin' Down The Road Feelin' Bad>The Wheel>Uncle John's Band>Terrapin Station
Stephen NyQuist on drums
One more Saturday Night at the Watermark! We're playing 8-midnight, so even if you're seeing the Red Wings earlier, you'll be able to come out for our after party - and it's free! RSVP on Facebook.
Raising The Dead begun its necromance about 3 years ago, when Bill Butler approached Jake Vasquez with an idea to recreate the music of the Grateful Dead. Dave Martin joined a few months later, and not long after, Max Katz formed our "core four." Since then, we've talked of recreating the Dead's first live release of the compact disc era, "Without A Net." When the call came for our first headlining gig at the Parliament Room at Otus Supply, we knew it was time to make it so.
Not that we weren't prepared - of the 17 songs spanning the double-disc collection, we had performed 14, most of them many times. The WAN versions were our go-to reference tracks for songs like Feel Like A Stranger and Help>Slip>Frank since we first learned them. We love the late-80s energy, the contributions of keyboardist/vocalist Brent Mydland, and the joy that Jerry seemed to exude playing with this lineup, so we couldn't wait to work to recreate the music and the vibe.
For the show, we learned Walkin' Blues, Dear Mr. Fantasy, and the Weir rarity Victim or the Crime. The latter song was a test with its challenging chromaticism, but everyone did their homework, and the song fell together effortlessly the first time in rehearsal, and our comfort comes across on stage.
There was one piece of the puzzle we had to add to our ensemble in order to adequately recreate the album - and that was Branford Marsalis' stunning sax work on Eyes of the World. We chose Bill's Full Speed Ahead bandmate Mark Lane, who took to the task with musicianship and professionalism that made him a pleasure to play with. Quickly, we knew one song wouldn't be enough, so he was brought in to play on Walkin' Blues and Dear Mr. Fantasy, and during our encore (we'll get to that soon!)
So, in great contrast to our Halloween show, this setlist was entirely predictable - with a few exceptions - until the encore. We followed the album but added Weather Report to Let It Grow to play the entire suite, and we played the '73 ending to Eyes, which the Dead didn't play in the 80s. One thing the Dead did consistently do in this period was Drums>Space, and while it wasn't on the ablum, we added it between Victim or the Crime and Help on the Way. Our guest drummer Stephen NyQuist (in his 6th appearance with RTD) added unflinching energy and sparkling backround vocals, and a killer solo Drums. The album version of Dear Mr. Fantasy was sung by Brent and included as an elegy to the recently departed Mr. Mydland, but it oddly fades out, rather than finishes. This may be because they usually segued into the "Na na na na" section of The Beatle's classic Hey Jude, and royalties may have made its inclusion on the album prohibitive. At Max's suggestion, we ended Dear Mr. Fantasy (expertly sung by Stephen), then played the entire McCartney classic. The crowd sang just about every word along with us, and it made a great capstone to the second set.
While we're mentioning the crowd, let's talk about the best fans around for a minute. The crowd that night at Otus was big, and they were ready for a rock and roll show! The cheers of appreciation, the non-stop dancing, and the sheer enthusiasm for hearing their favorite music played live was so encouraging for everyone on stage. Jake's lightning licks, Max's Moog mastery, Bill's bass bombs, Stephen's frantic fills, Dave's smooth singing, and Mark's soulful sax all elicited cheers of delight from our fantastic fans. We were pushed to new heights by the enthusiasm of our crowd, and we're always so happy to have them back to see us do what we love.
About that encore: we decided it would be appropriately audacious to give everyone far more than they expected, after a 70-minute first set and a 75-minute second set: a 45-minute encore of Dark Star>St. Stephen>The Eleven>Not Fade Away. Every segue brought disbelief that it was still showtime, until the audience ended the show, clapping along while singing "NO OUR LOVE WILL NOT FADE AWAY!"
It was a night we will not soon forget. Thank you.
11-29-2019 The Parliament Room at Otus Supply, Ferndale, MI
I: Feel Like A Stranger, Mississippi Half-Step Toodeloo, Walkin' Blues*#, Althea, Cassidy, Bird Song, Weather Report Suite>Let It Grow
II: China Cat Sunflower>I Know You Rider, Looks Like Rain, Eyes of the World#, Victim or the Crime*>Drums>Space>Help On The Way>Slipknot>Franklin's Tower, One More Saturday Night, Dear Mr. Fantasy*+, Hey Jude*#
E: Dark Star#>St. Stephen>The Eleven>Not Fade Away
*=first time played
#=Mark Lane on saxophone
+=Stephen Nyquist on lead vocals
"We're going to do something different for this one," Max said.
You see, our keyboard player Max writes our setlists, and for Halloween, he decided we'd turn our audience's expectations on their heads. For the 'heads in the crowd, it was a whole lot of fun. The usual song pairings (like China>Rider or Sailor>Saint) were moved around and mixed up like colors on an unsolved Rubic's Cube. Add in several song debuts and the evening became a trick-turned-treat of Grateful music.
We'll let the setlist speak for itself:
October 31, 2019, The Watermark Bar & Grill, St. Clair Shores, MI
I: Cryptical Envelopment>Wharf Rat>Cryptical Envelopment>Loser, Lost Sailor>I Know You Rider>Saint of Circumstance
II: Picasso Moon*, Werewolves of London*>Samson and Delilah*, Weather Report Prelude, China Cat Sunflower>Eyes of the World>Playin' in the Band (reprise)
III: The Music Never Stopped*, Black Throated Wind>The Other One>Playin' in the Band>Franklin's Tower>Help on the Way>Slipknot!>Sugar Magnolia> Fire on the Mountain>Sunshine Daydream>Scarlet Begonias, Let It Grow, One More Saturday Night
*First time played
We were joined by the always awesome Brent Nagy on drums. We return to the Watermark on December 7.
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Raising The Dead
Is a band committed to recreating the live experience of a Grateful Dead show. We hope you'll kindly join us.