Search - Mickey Hart :: Rolling Thunder

Rolling Thunder
Mickey Hart
Rolling Thunder
Genres: Dance & Electronic, World Music, New Age, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1


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CD Details

All Artists: Mickey Hart
Title: Rolling Thunder
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 0
Label: Arista
Original Release Date: 1/1/1972
Re-Release Date: 10/10/1995
Genres: Dance & Electronic, World Music, New Age, Pop, Rock
Styles: World Dance, Jam Bands, Rock Jam Bands
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 078221401128, 081227892920, 023002202647, 092874011947, 4049290064763

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CD Reviews

Seminal piece from the Marin County Musical Mafia
G. Gould | San Francisco | 06/03/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I can't agree with the other reviewer's lukewarm rating, but like most things in life, he is not hallucinating when he describes the difference in sounds. No, this is not a continuously-themed concept album, but it is a collection of some great tunes, some even historic, performed and embellished by some of the greatest musicians to come from the Bay Area music scene. The album's cover art is one of the best Kelly/Mouse designs ever, and screams at you that something special is going on here. The Shoshone Invocation, delivered by Rolling Thunder himself, kicks things off, then transitions from marimbas in 10/4 time to the sound of rain, then leads into a special version of the Grateful Dead song "Playing in the Band," titled as "The Main Ten." John Cipollina's guitar licks are in classic fluid form here, and this version informs your understanding of all the other versions. Rather than do a blow-by-blow, check out who plays what here:

Other highlights:
"Blind John," a Jefferson Airplane song you may have never seen on an album (I saw it live during the Thirty Seconds over Winterland show)
"Deep Wide and Frequent," which is a jam, featuring stellar guitarists Jerry Garcia, John Cipollina, and Terry Haggerty
"Pump Song" features the water pump of Mickey Hart's ranch, and is the same song as "Greatest Story Ever Told."
"Hangin' On" is a great album closer, and features great vocals by David Freiberg, who sings on other songs as well, and Cipollina and Barry Melton, two of the greatest SG guitarists of the era, dueling it out.

A true must-have for any true Deadhead."
Classic rock meets world music
The Delite Rancher | Phoenix, Arizona | 06/03/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)

"How would you like to hear an album that brings together the greatness of Jerry Garcia, Mickey Hart, Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Zakir Hussein, Grace Slick, Paul Kantner and the Tower of Power? If you're not drooling at this point, you should since these are time tested musicians that have made great recordings. While the ingredients may be high quality, the end product is not. This album is schizophrenic; it doesn't know if it's a classic rock LP or a world music disc. This schizophrenic division is most likley a reflection of how Mickey Hart felt about music in 1972 when he was both the drummer for the Grateful Dead and a burgeoning Ethnomusicologist. While half of the songs sound like Classical Indian or Indonesian Gamelon, the other half sound like something off a Classic Rock FM station. To add to the disjointed theme, the Tower of Power's gaudy brass adds an R&B element that spoils most of the rock tunes. While the album could have been eclectic for its own sake, the rock songs just aren't very good. While all the music on "Rolling Thunder" is interesting and creative, the songs have little staying power or resonance. That written, we do get to hear the pump sound that is the mythical inspiration for 'the Greatest Story Ever Told,' here appropriately renamed as 'Pump Song.' This album should be considered a stepping stone that led to Mickey Hart's better work as both a band leader and producer. If you want to jam out, listen to Dick's Picks; if you want amazing rhythm, pop in "Planet Drum;" get this only if you're a Mickey Hart completist."
I'm gonna have to disagree with Delite Rancher
Mike | Philadelphia, PA, USA | 05/07/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This album is actually made in the same vein as Paul Kantner's "Blow Against The Empire", "Sunfighter", and David Crosby's "If Only I Could Remember My Name". Mickey Hart had gathered most of the same musicians that comprised those albums to create a sonic masterpiece. Although Hart stayed mainly with San Fran musicians, mainly other members of The Dead, Quicksilver Messenger Service, Country Joe & The Fish, and Jefferson Airplane.

The feel of the record is evenly split between cleverly funky psychedelic rock songs and explorations in world music and musical dissonance. The two different styles fuse perfectly on "Pump Song" which utilizes a tape loop of Mickey Hart's Water Pump (which plays in the key of C to match the music) as the only rhythmic support, while another Dead classic "Greatest Story Ever Told" plays over that, ending with more explorations of dissonance, courtesy of Jerry Garcia's "insect fear" (what he is credited for on the sleeve).

The album also shows off the great vocal range of Quicksilver's David Frieberg. As well as contributing various bass, piano, guitar, and percussion parts throughout the album, he sings in a low-baritone growl (fed through various effects) on the slightly spooky rocker "Fletcher Carnaby" and sings into the upper stratosphere on the funky tracks "Young Man" and "Hangin' On".

Basically, there is little else I can say about this album, but it is definitely essential for anybody who loves the Dead, the Airplane, Quicksilver, or Country Joe & The Fish."