Jerry Garcia & David Grisman
Been All Around This World
First Appeared at The Music Box, May 2004, Volume 11, #5
Written by John Metzger
In the early ’90s, within the confines of David Grisman’s home recording studio, Jerry Garcia found the solace that he desperately sought from the circus-like atmosphere that typically surrounded both the Grateful Dead and his side project the Jerry Garcia Band. The duo’s rekindled friendship served as a catalyst for exploring music with a fresh perspective, and the magic created during these sessions yielded some of the finest moments of either artist’s career. Since their eclectic eponymous debut, Grisman has tightened up the focus of each subsequent package in order to offer sets tailor-made for specific markets. First came the fun-filled children’s outing Not for Kids Only, which was followed by collections that traversed traditional folk (Shady Grove) and jazz (So What) as well as the very nature of one of the duo’s extraordinary jam sessions (The Pizza Tapes).
In what may be the final studio outing in the exquisite Garcia/Grisman series, Been All around This World features a hodgepodge of tracks that, for one reason or another, didn’t fit on any of the other albums. The highlight unquestionably is a magnificent cover of Bob Dylan’s The Ballad of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest, which Garcia delivers with the utmost poignancy, though the easy-going title track, the gentle refrain of George Jones’ Take Me, and Sitting in Limbo’s spiritual search for strength run a close second. Yes, there are moments when Garcia’s vocals are less than stellar, and the duo’s rendition of James Brown’s I’ll Go Crazy is more of a curiosity than anything else. Overall, however, the set works remarkably well considering that not only is it comprised of leftovers but it also was never meant for release in the first place. ˝
Been All Around This World is available
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2004 The Music Box