Jerry Garcia: 15 years gone, but back from the dead with his deadheads?
I always hate to see my beloved Chicago Cubs lose, which they've been doing a lot of this year. But if they had to lose another game last night, at least it came in support of a good cause -- the 15th anniversary of Jerry Garcia's death, which was celebrated in classic Deadhead style at San Francisco's AT&T Park, where the Giants beat the Cubbies 4-3 in 11 innings. The Giants held a Garcia tribute night, which included his daughter throwing out the ceremonial first pitch as well as Bob Weir and Phil Lesh taking the field to sing the National Anthem.
Dead stalwarts Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann were also on hand to lead thousands of fans, nearly all armed with tiny kazoos, in a seventh inning stretch rendition of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame." Needless to say, Garcia was awarded baseball's highest honor -- a giveaway of Jerry Garcia bobbleheads, which offered an especially beatific-style likeness of the late guitar hero. And, oh yes, the most legendary Deadhead of all, Bill Walton, was in attendance, grinning from ear to ear and trying his hand at a little play-by-play up in the broadcast booth.
If there were any doubt about the Dead's true vocal gifts, just watch this amazing clip of Garcia, Bob Weir and Vince Welnick singing the National Anthem at the late, great Candlestick Park back in 1993. Having heard thousands of no-talents try to croon the Anthem, it's a delight to hear it performed so flawlessly by Garcia and Co. Just give it a listen:
Photo: Annabelle Garcia, Jerry Garcia's daughter, throws out the first pitch at the San Francisco Giants game Monday night.
Credit: Ben Margot / Associated Press