Jerry Garcia's Amazing Grace

Overview

February of 1993, Jerry Garcia met with David Grisman and Tony Rice to have an acoustic jam session. Tony's wife asked Jerry to sing Amazing Grace, and he obliged, with Grisman on mandolin and Rice on guitar. Together, the three played one of the most hauntingly poignant versions ever recorded of this classic song.

Undoubtedly saved by his own "amazing grace," John Newton was a slave ship captain turned preacher who wrote the first version of this timeless hymn in the late ...

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Overview

February of 1993, Jerry Garcia met with David Grisman and Tony Rice to have an acoustic jam session. Tony's wife asked Jerry to sing Amazing Grace, and he obliged, with Grisman on mandolin and Rice on guitar. Together, the three played one of the most hauntingly poignant versions ever recorded of this classic song.

Undoubtedly saved by his own "amazing grace," John Newton was a slave ship captain turned preacher who wrote the first version of this timeless hymn in the late 1760s. It went on to become one of the most beloved songs in America. Recorded hundreds of times, it resonates as strongly today as it did when it was originally written.

Garcia recorded Amazing Grace for the first time while jamming with Grisman and Rice (recorded on Acoustic Disc's The Pizza Tapes), making it a rare event — and the inspiration for this book.

Jerry Garcia was an artist, a poet, and a world-renowned musician. "Amazing Grace" is a classic song that has inspired countless generations. Here for the first time, the lyrics of this song are illustrated with a selection of Jerry Garcia's own wildly imaginative artwork, which was painstakingly chosen in cooperation with Deborah Koons Garcia from more than four hundred pieces of her late husband's works.

A CD of the 1993 Garcia/Grisman/Rice recording of Amazing Grace is included in this book, making Jerry Garcia's Amazing Grace a unique keepsake for art and music lovers alike.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The legendary Grateful Dead front man died in 1995, but the remains of his creative corpse continue to be unearthed (think CD releases from the vault, limited edition screen prints-perhaps even fresh batches of those trippy Garcia-designed neckties). This thin gift book couples a 1993 recording of the American standard Amazing Grace with a handful of Garcia paintings culled by his widow, Deborah Koons Garcia, from over 400 works. The CD's single track of Jerry's familiar, slightly off-key waver, accompanied by Grisman on the mandolin, Rice on the guitar and a little background coughing, is gentle and pleasing; the book, unfortunately, is neither. Garcia's art, which ranges from childlike landscapes to realistic line drawings to jagged acid abstracts, is interesting enough, but the pages are a mess of bright, weirdly cropped details laid out against stock computer-generated backdrops; the lyrics to Amazing Grace scroll along the tops and sides of the pages in cumbersome digital fonts. With its childlike sense of graphic design and its uninspiring celebration of an already much-celebrated rock star, this book seems less like a tribute-or even a vanity project-than a an attempt to pass off access to a famous man's archives as an uplifting piece of poetry. (on sale Sept. 17) Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060297107
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/24/2002
  • Edition description: Book & CD
  • Pages: 32
  • Product dimensions: 6.88 (w) x 8.06 (h) x 0.33 (d)

Meet the Author

John Newton is the author of "Amazing Grace." A former slave ship captain turned preacher, Newton was also a prolific songwriter. He wrote and recorded the first version of "Amazing Grace" in the late 1760s. Some say the melody is based on slave songs.

Jerry Garcia and David Grisman met at a bluegrass show in 1964 and collaborated on a variety of projects, including their 1973 band Old and In the Way. Jerry spent over thirty years writing and playing guitar with the Grateful Dead, while David revolutionized the mandolin with his own brand of acoustic music called "dawg" (a nickname Jerry gave him), which he continues to perform with his quintet. In 1990 they formed the Garcia/Grisman band and subsequently made new recordings, including the 1993 release Not for Kids Only, on which the song "Jenny Jenkins" appears.

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