By Michael Hamad
10:50 AM EDT, April 30, 2013
Area Deadheads: if you're looking for a little enlightenment tonight, head to Middletown, where Dr. Graeme Boone (pictured), an Ohio State professor of music, will present a "psychedelic lecture" on the Grateful Dead's "Dark Star" at Wesleyan University.
Boone will present an overview of the Dead's early history and musical style, followed by a showing of a "mandala movie," designed to present a "holistic, organic analysis of the tune, and incorporating every salient element in the extended, psychedelically evocative improvisations of its first 150 recorded performances," according to a Wesleyan press release.
The animated movie itself offers "changing colors and annotations" to accompany two performances of "Dark Star" recorded during the band's European tour (4/8/72 and 5/23/72).
Boone, also a well-respected early music scholar, previously published a lenghty analysis of "Dark Star" in Understanding Rock: Essays in Musical Analysis, a 1997 anthology Boone co-edited with U. of Rochester professor John Covach. Members of the Dead responded to Boone's study, and their comments were added to the end of the study. (You can find it here.)
Here's the complete 5/23/72 show ("Dark Star" is in Set 2), in case you have three-and-a-half hours to kill today.
Grateful Dead's "Dark Star:" A Psychedelic Lecture by Dr. Graeme Boone, Tuesday, April 30, 8 p.m., free, CFA Hall, Wesleyan University, Middletown, wesleyan.edu/cfa
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