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iTunes Review

Though The Pizza Tapes began as an unauthorized release, this collection is the definitive document of David Grisman and Jerry Garcia’s long and storied musical collaboration. The album came together when Grisman and guitarist Tony Rice were jamming one night at Grisman’s home studio in February 1993 and invited Garcia to join them. Garcia’s copy of the tapes was eventually stolen and bootlegged by a pizza delivery boy, which is how the collection got its unusual title. After circulating among Deadheads for years, Grisman gave the tapes an official release in 2000. The performances are looser and less composed than the other Grisman/Garcia albums, but that’s what makes it essential. The bits of conversation, false starts, and off-the-cuff choices evoke the best kind of late-night jam. The tone is exceedingly slow and relaxed, giving the entire session a warm, unworried aura. The interplay between Garcia and Rice is astounding, especially on a long version of “Summertime.” And the pleasure is ours.

Customer Reviews

Garcia at his best (and happiest)

Musicians usually play their best when they are the most comfortable as well as happy. And for Garcia during the last years, that place was in the informal sessions with David Grisman. Some of Jerry's best playing was recorded with David Grisman. So listening to "The Pizza Tapes" puts a big smile on my face because you can hear the happiness in Jerry's voice. For all of the rough moments he had been going through on and off tour, he had a little oasis of musical comfort at Grisman's home studio. This recording is like a gift to us fans as well as a historical document. This is pure- not perfect, not without flaws, but pure. As I wrote previously- I, as a fan, feel good knowing Jerry was enjoying his music in his final years. "The Pizza Tapes" recording is proof that these guys loved playing together. It went beyond record labels, concert tours, or social politics. And because of that the music that comes out of that relationship can only be something special. So enjoy!

Welcome to Myth

Anybody familiar with the Inklings (an informal group at Oxford in the '30s & 40s with C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien that met in a pub to read works-in-progress aloud) will understand what Tony, Jerry & David were doing in David's Marin County home (basement) recording studio. Like the Inklings' pub readings, these tracks are musical myth and legend-lands seen, heard & felt-in-the-heart as they're being created. Comforting familiarity mixed with newness & wonder; a place where fantasy elf-lands meet real wood, metal strings, and years of running scales in laughing, effortless, authentic expression. Glimpse an open seam in the curtain between our everydays and the myth-music we've always known. An essential download!

5.5 stars for brilliance...

Garcia and Grisman at thier best here on the pizza tapes. the appitizers are gripping little flavors of what these guys can do. I still get chills every time i hear the second appitizer, and it's just garcia messin' around! with no further adu ladies and gentlemen, buy this album, steal it, do whatever you can to get a hold of it, because it is incrediblely well done and completely laid back while driving you through the entire recording. amazingly well done.


Born: August 1, 1942 in San Francisco, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Guitarist, singer, and songwriter Jerry Garcia was best known as a founding member of the Grateful Dead, the rock band for which he served as de facto leader for 30 years, from 1965 until his death in 1995. Concurrently for much of that time, he also led his own Jerry Garcia Band (JGB), and he performed and recorded in a variety of configurations and a variety of styles, particularly styles of folk and country music, sometimes switching to banjo or pedal steel guitar for the purpose. But the Grateful...
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