August 27, 1972 found the New Riders once again on the bill with the Grateful Dead for what turned out to be one of the more legendary events in this subcultures history. Chuck Kesey (brother of author and Merry Prankster icon Ken Kesey) put together this benefit concert, which quickly became known as the "Field Trip," for the Springfield Creamery. As fellow Prankster Ken Babbs recalls, "no one ever suspected it would become a historic event with an attendance of 20,000 on the hottest day ever
they ran out of water, the guitars warped in the heat and now everyone you talk to, hundreds of thousands, were there on that all time greatest most spectacular day."
THIS CD WAS PRODUCED FROM THE ORIGINAL 16-TRACK ANALOG MASTER TAPES RUNNING AT 15 I.P.S. WEVE TRIED TO PRESERVE THIS DAY AS IT WAS
AN OUTDOOR EVENT ON AN EXTREMELY HOT DAY WITH AN ASSORTMENT OF MERRY PRANKSTERS ON THE LOOSE. WE THINK YOULL ENJOY!
About the Artist
In the summer of 1969, John Dawson was looking to showcase his songs while Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead was looking to practice his brand new pedal steel guitar. The two played in coffeehouses and small clubs initially, and the music they made became the nucleus for the New Riders of the Purple Sage. Along with guitarist David Nelson and the rhythm section of Mickey Hart and Phil Lesh from the Dead, the New Riders played every chance they got. By 1970, Dave Torbert took over on bass, and soon enough, smoky clubs all over the San Francisco bay area were filling up with whooping, foot-stomping crowds as their music got tighter and more dynamic. Through extensive tours with the Dead, and the addition of Jefferson Airplane drummer Spencer Dryden taking over for Hart and the talented Buddy Cage filling the pedal steel spot that Garcia had to vacate, the New Riders emerged as a fully independent unit. An excitingly creative band with a special brand of musicsweet country harmonies mixed with pulsing rock rhythms. Throughout the 1970s, the New Riders recorded seven album for Columbia, of which their 1973 release, The Adventures of Panama Red, is probably their most widely known. They wound out the seventies recording 3 albums for MCA, going through a few more personnel changes, with Dawson carrying the NRPS torch throughout the 1980s and early 1990s until he retired to the hills of Mexico. The New Riders of the Purple Sage received a Lifetime Achievement Award from High Times magazine at their Doobie Awards in September, 2002 and performed a brief set at the festivities at B.B. King's Blues Club in New York City.