Gathering of the Vibes Festival Piece Grateful Dead Back Together
The 17th annual Gathering of the Vibes Festival will bring the surviving members of the Grateful Dead back together – in a manner of speaking.
Three of the four living Dead members will appear at the festival with their respective solo projects on Friday, July 20. The festival itself will run from July 19-22 and features a varied and extensive lineup including the Avett Brothers and Primus.
On that Friday of the Dead, the lineup will include former bassist Phil Lesh & Friends, guitarist Bob Weir playing with Bruce Hornsby and Branford Maraslis, percussionist Bill Kreutzmann and his group 7 Walkers and percussionist Mickey Hart. The latter recently spoke to Billboard about the event.
“It’s a kindred spirit thing,” Hart told the magazine. “It feels very homey, very warm and fuzzy for us. After Jerry (Garcia) died, these people…didn’t want the groove to stop, didn’t want the vibe to stop, so they put this [festival] together over the years”
Hart has a new solo album called “Mysterium Tremendum” coming out on May 10. Unlike the other former members of the Grateful Dead, he will be appearing on Saturday, July 21.
With all the former members gathered in one place, the inevitable question becomes whether an impromptu jam will occur. Festival founder Ken Hays says it’s not up to him to decide.
“You just never know,” he said, also speaking to Billboard. “They’re all getting along beautifully together and making incredible music. I think all that we can do is lay out the framework and let the possibilities and their inspiration decide.
The festival is held in New England, this time at Seaside Park in Bridgeport, Conn., where it has consistently been held since 2007
Other notable artists include Sound Tribe Sector 9, Yonder Mountain String Band, Zappa Plays Zappa, the Greyboy Allstars and Mates of State.