(Just one moment)

A Word on Gloria Jones and Jacklyn LaBranch

Gloria Jones

Gloria Jones is a famous vocalist who was part of the Jerry Garcia Band from 1984 until Jerry Garcia passed away in 1995. When Gloria Jones joined the Jerry Garcia Band, the group already included a fantastic lineup that included the likes of Jerry, vocalist Jacklyn LaBranch, organist Melvin Seals, drummer David Kemper, and bassist John Kahn. With the exception of Kemper who took a four-month break between 1985 and 1986 and subsequently left the band in 1994, the band remained intact from its formation up to the period when Jerry Garcia passed away. Jacklyn LaBranch and Gloria Jones were nicknamed The Jerryettes and were instrumental in creating the band’s soul food sound. Over the years following Jerry Garcia’s passing, Gloria Jones participated in various events paying tribute to Jerry including the Jerry Garcia Birthday Band’s performances at Vail in 2018 and Red Rocks in 2017

Jacklyn LaBranch

Jacklyn LaBranch became a member of the Jerry Garcia Band as early as 1982 and was a member of the band until Jerry Garcia passed away in 1995. LaBranch was an instrumental vocalist for the band and her positive presence offered a direct connection to the work and life of Jerry Garcia and their shared origin from the Bay Area. Jacklyn LaBranch was first introduced to the Jerry Garcia Band through Melvin Seals. At the time, LaBranch was not at all familiar with Jerry Garcia’s music. The year was 1982. LaBranch was a member of a community choir and their director had just moved out of town. The community choir had not disbanded, but they had sort of stopped singing. Melvin Seals asked LaBranch if she would like to be a member of the Jerry Garcia Band after doing some recording work in his studio, an offer that LaBranch agreed to in delight. And that’s how LaBranch joined the Jerry Garcia Band.

After that, LaBranch, Melvin, and Dickerson, also known as Dee Dee started doing singing rehearsals together. To LaBranch, music was music, so she really did not really question the lyrics or music. LaBranch always played the piano, and also played in the orchestra. Some of the pieces she started with include The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, and Dear Prudence. After learning the Music with Melvin Seals, they did a singing rehearsal with the band. It was during the band’s singing rehearsal that LaBranch met Jerry Garcia.

The first gig that Jacklyn LaBranch did as part of the Jerry Garcia Band, was at The Stone. They had to walk all the way from the dressing room to the stage and as LaBranche looked out, she silently wondered where all the hippies had come from and where they had been all these years. The Deadheads’ love for Jerry Garcia became most apparent in 1986 when he fell into a coma following a diabetes illness. Jerry was down for some time and when he was back in form his first performance wasn’t with the Grateful Dead but with the Jerry Band Garcia at The Stone. When Jerry Garcia got on stage that day you would have thought that God himself had made an appearance. It was not much the shouting and yelling, as it was the love that filled the room. The love was palpable and you could feel it. The band and the audience were so glad that Jerry was back. It was an experience like you’ve never seen before.…

Members of the Garcia Birthday Band

In August 2017, Garcia Birthday Band made a performance at the Jerry Garcia 75th Birthday party hosted by Red Rocks Amphitheater in honor of the 75th birthday of Jerry Garcia. The event featured performances by the Campfire Band by Bob Weir, and a special collaboration dubbed The Jerry Garcia Birthday Band that included Gloria Jones, Melvin Seals, as well as Jackie LaBranch as well as Duane Trucks, Tom Hamilton, Kamasi Washington, and Oteil Burbridge. Among the surprise appearances was John Mayer. With such rich talent performing on stage, the biggest stars were probably the guitars of Jerry Garcia, including Rosebud, Tiger, Wolf, and 2 Travis Bean Axes that Hamilton was given the distinct honor to play.

Later, several of the same all-star cast of artists got together to pay tribute to the great and late Captain Trips. Designated the Jerry Garcia Band, Jerry Garcia Band members Jacklyn LBranch, vocalist Gloria Jones, and Keyboardist Melvin Seals, drummer Duane Trucks of the Widespread Panic, guitarist Tom Hamilton of Ghost Light, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, and bassist Oteil Burbridge of Dead and Company joined forces to make a delightful performance at the Gerard Ford Amphitheater in Vail Colorado.

Jerry Garcia

Jerry Garcia was the most reticent of cultural icons and the unlikeliest of popstars. While performing on stage Jerry donned plain clothes, often loose-fitting jeans and a slack-like t-shirt. Some might even characterize his appearance as a salesman (life insurance, health insurance…maybe even a bible salesman.) Jerry rarely spoke to the audience that was glued to his every move. His guitar lines were similar — rhapsodic, complex, and lovely, but never flashy. His weatherworn, strained vocal style had a colloquial, subdued quality about them. When he was offstage, Jerry spent his time with friends and family, and when he participated in interviews, he often did so in self-deprecating, sly-witted ways. It was as if Jerry was bemused by the situation of his own renown. Nonetheless, he was one of the best guitarists of his time and produced some great music.

Melvin Seals

Most people know Melvin Seals for his lovely smile that always brightens the room and his long musical partnership and friendship with guitarist and cultural icon Jerry Garcia. For eighteen years, as a member of the Jerry Garcia Band, Melvin Seals did his B-3 magic and helped define and pioneer what is today known as Jam Band Music. Some of Melvin Seal’s current projects include The Mix, Terrapin Flyer, The Rock Collection, Oteil and Friends, and Melvin Seals and JGB. The best of Melvin Seals is yet to come. From bluegrass to rock to funk to blues, The Mix serves up a delightful combination of a little gospel and RnB to take things up a notch. Each member of the powerhouse lineup brings remarkable chops, spontaneity, soul, expressive style, and intuition to the table. With electric and acoustic ingredients and creative combinations of hearty drums, lap and slide steel with savory bass, mandoline, guitar, as well as the wizard’s magic on the keyboards and Hammond B-3 Organ. The result is one of the most delightful combinations of natural organic grooves that dares to challenge boundaries. The chemistry of The Mix is the focus from which the musicians create a high and spontaneous art where the sky is the only limit. They offer a psychedelic and exciting musical journey that keeps audiences staring in amazement, smiling, and dancing for many hours. Melvin Seals is pioneering a deeper path in the music journey he helped establish. Performances by Melvin are a must feel, must-see experience. His music is guaranteed to raise your spirit, touch your soul, and get you grooving.…

An Intro to the Garcia Birthday Band

Based in Portland, Oregon, the Garcia Birthday band is a team of veteran musicians celebrating and interpreting the vast repertoire of The Grateful Dead and the late Jerry Garcia. Also known as GBB, the musicians are more than just your usual tribute band. Drawing from years of both shared and individual experience, Garcia Birthday Band can transform and craft tunes from The Grateful Dead and the late Jerry Garcia into something original and fresh. Fine harmonies, solid chops, and tight arrangements all contribute to GBB’s music travels and explorations of probably the most diverse and greatest songbooks of all time.

Garcia Birthday Band is best known for raising the roof and keeping the dance floor shaking, rocking, and hopping. The band’s fanbase has rapidly increased over the years, with many fans describing Garcia Birthday Band’S good vibes and community spirit as very contagious. Music enthusiasts of different tastes find the band’s extensive playlist delightful. Garcia Birthday Band’s playlist includes classics from The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Chuck Berry, Johnny Cash, Smokey Robinson, Jimmy Cliff, James Brown, The Meters, Dr. John, Traffic, Otis Redding, Buddy Holly, Neville Brothers, Peter Tosh, Merle Haggard Phish, Bruce Cockburn, Rev. Gary Davis, and Warren Zevon among others. If your taste in music ranges from Americana, folk, bluegrass, RnB, country, or rock-and-roll, you will love the Garcia Birthday Band. Being a Deadhead is no requirement.

With artists hailing from the likes of Ike Willis Band, Buds of May, Nine Days Wonder, Cubensis, Kingfish, David Nelson Band, LOOS3, Brothers Jam, and New Riders of the Purple Sage, Garcia Birthday Band promises nothing short of a delightful musical adventure. No two shows by Garcia Birthday Band are the same. The band always tries to bring a true-to-life classic vibe to each and every show they perform. The band members include Edward Connel on vocals and keyboards; Joe Patterson on Vocals, keyboards, and fiddle; Justin Pacuska on vocals and guitar; Scot Gillan on vocals and bass; Arthur Steinhorn on percussion and drums; and Jon Sokol on vocals and guitar.…