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when did Pig Pen start missing gigs?

 
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Jethro



Joined: 22 May 2009
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 5:39 am    Post subject: when did Pig Pen start missing gigs? Reply with quote

Well I know about his health issues but since I am a watkins glen "enthusiest"
(Just partial to that show for personal reasons/dad) was pig deceased by then? was he there? was anyone on the keys? what do you know about the dissapearence of Ron? Anyone?...

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skobud
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can tell you what I know off-hand....Pig died of cirrhosis of the liver, and pretty much everyone know that...What most don't know is that it was hereditary or congenital, and was made much much worse by partying......He did drink himself to death, but it did not take nearly as much for him as it would a normal person due to his lifelong health problems. Now its hard to say exactly when he got sick, but he did stop touring in August '71 and Kieth came along....My personal guess would be about May of '71 is when he really started to get sick......My opinion is that his last really great performance was 4/29/71, which I have written about many times.......It was December before he came back, but by then the writing was on the wall. I read that during his time off it was the most depressing point of his life. He used to call GD offices in San Mateo almost everyday just to talk to someone. He had his Hammond repossesed several times and was generally losing his mind.......He then made it from December until the end of May(the end of Europe '72), and was literally bedridden after that. His body simply could not take it anymore...He struggled through a few more shows stateside, and his last was 6/17/72 in LA at the Hollywood Bowl.

He died alone on March 8, 1973 of a "gastrointestinal hemmorage" at 27 years old. In other words, he bled to death internally......It is written that the band, especially Jerry, could not deal with it. Jerry did not cry or show any emotion at his funeral according to Mountain Girl. She said Jerry was incapible at that point.

We have a thread here "when the music makes you cry". This story makes me want to cry. Pig never had a chance. He was sick by 25, and dead at 27. This is not the classic romantic rock and roll story here, its just plain sad. I love Pig, always have, always will......
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fillmoreeast



Joined: 08 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 9:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's either in Long Strange Trip or Garcia an American Life where it's mentioned that Pig came around a few times to hang out with the guys(this is after his last performance) and they more or less ignored him or were too busy working on new stuff. Now that is just plain fucked up!! I'm sure Garcia carried alot of guilt around that. Makes sense he didn't show any emotion and not deal with it. He just buried it away like many people do. I wonder if he ever grieved later on.
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aikowolf



Joined: 03 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 9:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

strange I had heard from what I thought was a reliable source that none of the Band went to Pigs Funeral.. now I'll have to rered everything I have about the boys.. back in a month or 2 Laughing

Pig was looking pretty bad in Europe 1972 even, get a hold of the video from 4-17-72, looked bad but was till belting out the tunes

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Kochman
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My question is... did he ever STOP drinking?
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aikowolf



Joined: 03 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 9:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kochman wrote:
My question is... did he ever STOP drinking?

yes, on March 8th, 1973 PigPen finally stopped drinking Southern Comfort for good

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Kochman
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

aikowolf wrote:
Kochman wrote:
My question is... did he ever STOP drinking?

yes, on March 8th, 1973 PigPen finally stopped drinking Southern Comfort for good
Right... no time before that?
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skobud
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 10:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good point Aiko about the funeral, I could be wrong now that you mention that......Im gonna look it up too tonight after work, this was all by recollection....I do specifically remember the mountain girl interview about Jerry showing essentially nothing when Pig died.......And you are right Aiko, Pig never stopped drinking till the day he died........Its been about 4 months since I finished Garcia American Life....If anyone has a definitive answer about who if anyone attended the funeral, please post as now I think Aiko is correct.....
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dogstarz
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


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Reading this I gathered that Garcia was at the funeral. It also mentions Rock Scully being there.
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skobud
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right on Dog, I thought I remembered reading that. I had forgotten about the He's Gone tribute....Much appreciated, what a good book that was.....
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light into ashes



Joined: 18 Apr 2009
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wanted to reply to a few things here -
I think Pigpen did try to stop drinking in his last year - at least I remember reading that he stayed away from it even during the Europe '72 tour - but it was already too late.
The stories of the band ignoring Pigpen when he tried to come around are interesting - it's kind of natural though. If you've read accounts of the band, for instance McNally's book, this was not a gang of sweethearts - put a bunch of guys together in a successful band, callousness is going to predominate.
I think in Jackson's book, one guy who was with Garcia at Pigpen's funeral said he was the most depressed he'd ever seen him. But they did still go out on tour that same week.
Pigpen's last great performance....personally I think he was pretty good in the Europe '72 shows, even if more subdued - there are some outstanding Good Lovings & Lovelights & Cautions. What about 4/14/72, for instance? Even in December '71, for instance 12/10 or 12/14, he was great. What's really interesting is that he started writing new songs in that last year - Mr Charlie, Chinatown Shuffle, Two Souls - which shows that he could've gone in a new direction with the band rather than sticking to the blues covers.
Pigpen's story is a sad one - but so is Garcia's. Garcia also chose to keep up his habits even when his health started failing in the '80s. Pigpen chose the life he lived, he knew what the consequences might be, and he gave us lots of great performances in the few years he had. To say someone who was a famed underground-rock star "never had a chance" is overstating it, I think.....he could've done more perhaps, could've made wiser decisions, but so could we all.
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morticia



Joined: 08 Jan 2009
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
light into ashes wrote:
I wanted to reply to a few things here -
I think Pigpen did try to stop drinking in his last year - at least I remember reading that he stayed away from it even during the Europe '72 tour - but it was already too late.
The stories of the band ignoring Pigpen when he tried to come around are interesting - it's kind of natural though. If you've read accounts of the band, for instance McNally's book, this was not a gang of sweethearts - put a bunch of guys together in a successful band, callousness is going to predominate.
I think in Jackson's book, one guy who was with Garcia at Pigpen's funeral said he was the most depressed he'd ever seen him. But they did still go out on tour that same week.
Pigpen's last great performance....personally I think he was pretty good in the Europe '72 shows, even if more subdued - there are some outstanding Good Lovings & Lovelights & Cautions. What about 4/14/72, for instance? Even in December '71, for instance 12/10 or 12/14, he was great. What's really interesting is that he started writing new songs in that last year - Mr Charlie, Chinatown Shuffle, Two Souls - which shows that he could've gone in a new direction with the band rather than sticking to the blues covers.
Pigpen's story is a sad one - but so is Garcia's. Garcia also chose to keep up his habits even when his health started failing in the '80s. Pigpen chose the life he lived, he knew what the consequences might be, and he gave us lots of great performances in the few years he had. To say someone who was a famed underground-rock star "never had a chance" is overstating it, I think.....he could've done more perhaps, could've made wiser decisions, but so could we all.


Wow, that's a really lovely view of events, light into ashes.
A very thoughtful, eloquent and sensitive post, if I may say so.
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skobud
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2009 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never said he was a "famed underground rockstar". I said he was an alcoholic and the story was sad.


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jimmyjazz3389



Joined: 20 Oct 2009
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2009 4:11 pm    Post subject: Pigs wake Reply with quote

I recall reading in mcnally's book or it could have been elsewhere that during Pig's wake it was raining and there were at least hundreds of people outside in the mud basically having an orgy....thought that was kind of interesting.
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kevinh



Joined: 18 Feb 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had heard that Pigpen did stop drinking in his last year. At the time I heard the band considered not going on.

I went to a show at Kezar stadium on Memorial Day in 73. The New Riders along with W Jennings & Willie Nelson were on the Bill that day. I remember Jerry and Buddy Cage getting off watching the steel guitar player for Waylon & Willie, they were sharing a smoke and really like this guy he was > 60, and knew his stuff.

The Dead did a lot of their Cowboy songs, real country feel that day.

I heard in the crowd this was the first time the Dead played on SF since PP had died. They did a He's Gone that had everyone in tears.

They played Truckin and were wandering into the Other One, someone Broke a String and they had Phil doing a solo they rigged his bass so each string was tied to a stack a quad setup.

Great show one of my favorites, I'm baised due to the circumstances and it was my 2nd show.
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skobud
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 7:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kevinh wrote:
I had heard that Pigpen did stop drinking in his last year. At the time I heard the band considered not going on.

I went to a show at Kezar stadium on Memorial Day in 73. The New Riders along with W Jennings & Willie Nelson were on the Bill that day. I remember Jerry and Buddy Cage getting off watching the steel guitar player for Waylon & Willie, they were sharing a smoke and really like this guy he was > 60, and knew his stuff.

The Dead did a lot of their Cowboy songs, real country feel that day.

I heard in the crowd this was the first time the Dead played on SF since PP had died. They did a He's Gone that had everyone in tears.

They played Truckin and were wandering into the Other One, someone Broke a String and they had Phil doing a solo they rigged his bass so each string was tied to a stack a quad setup.

Great show one of my favorites, I'm baised due to the circumstances and it was my 2nd show.


First, welcome aboard and second that is awesome. I have never heard of anyone who was at 5/26/73....That is an all time show for me....Dont worry about being biased, that show kicks ass and stands up to any other show they ever did....Definately one of the best from '73.
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Kochman
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kevinh wrote:
I had heard that Pigpen did stop drinking in his last year. At the time I heard the band considered not going on.

I went to a show at Kezar stadium on Memorial Day in 73. The New Riders along with W Jennings & Willie Nelson were on the Bill that day. I remember Jerry and Buddy Cage getting off watching the steel guitar player for Waylon & Willie, they were sharing a smoke and really like this guy he was > 60, and knew his stuff.

The Dead did a lot of their Cowboy songs, real country feel that day.

I heard in the crowd this was the first time the Dead played on SF since PP had died. They did a He's Gone that had everyone in tears.

They played Truckin and were wandering into the Other One, someone Broke a String and they had Phil doing a solo they rigged his bass so each string was tied to a stack a quad setup.

Great show one of my favorites, I'm baised due to the circumstances and it was my 2nd show.

Excellent to have you kevinh! Thanks for the quality report here. I think you and fillmoreeast are our two "oldest" in the sense of what date your first shows were in... then tknight...
Definitely good to get input from those days.
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lkapon



Joined: 07 May 2009
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Location: N.W. N.J.

PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 2:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kochman wrote:

Excellent to have you kevinh! Thanks for the quality report here. I think you and fillmoreeast are our two "oldest" in the sense of what date your first shows were in... then tknight...
Definitely good to get input from those days.


He's known as Kezar Kevin around our parts and is an awesome dude! Glad he took the invite to join the pub and he will really shed some great insight on that time period as his memory is not full of window pane Very Happy Very Happy
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Kochman
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sweet! Definitely look forward to more first hand accounts... as well as any 2nd and 3rd hand accounts!
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kevinh



Joined: 18 Feb 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am enjoying the site. I have been a deadhead for 40+ years, however never had access to a lot of the shows, and lived with the albums for the vast majority of that time. Most of the posters here have heard a lot more of the Dead than I have Cool

I will try to download the shows I attended. I have Kezar and really enjoyed hearing ti again after all these years.

As I review the shows I will post my recollections of the shows.

Fun to browse the posts and see the shows the guys here have enjoyed.


Great Site BTW.
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Kochman
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 8:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That sounds awesome KK.
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snow_and_rain
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kevinh wrote:
I am enjoying the site. I have been a deadhead for 40+ years, however never had access to a lot of the shows, and lived with the albums for the vast majority of that time. Most of the posters here have heard a lot more of the Dead than I have Cool

I will try to download the shows I attended. I have Kezar and really enjoyed hearing ti again after all these years.

As I review the shows I will post my recollections of the shows.

Fun to browse the posts and see the shows the guys here have enjoyed.


Great Site BTW.
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Hey, welcome Kevin! Glad to have you aboard. Man, you saw some money shows in the early 70's.
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