Noted rock photographer Jay Blakesberg, who has spent much of his career chronicling the members of the Grateful Dead both on stage and off, has announced he will release a new photo book focused on the late Jerry Garcia next month.
Jerry Garcia: Secret Space of Dreams is set for release Oct. 15 and will feature a forward written by Dead & Company guitarist John Mayer, an introduction from Dead historian David Gans, an afterword from Widespread Panic bassist Dave Schools, an essay from Trixie Garcia, and quotes from an array of musicians, including Garcia’s bandmates in the Dead, along with Bob Dylan, Trey Anastasio, Carlos Santana, Jim James, David Crosby, Robert Hunter, Jorma Kaukonen, Garcia’s bandmates in the Dead and more. The book promises to offer a glimpse into the life and career of Garcia, “beginning from the middle of his career with the Grateful Dead and covering the last third of his life.”
“I’ve always said that musicians play like they are, and in the case of Garcia, his performances serve as a detailed map of a man, his intentions, his desires, and his impressions of the world around him,” Mayer writes in the foreword. “And going by that map, Garcia was a lovely, mighty soul. I never met him and will never understand the loss of those who did, but the vast archive of his music amounts to the makings of a starry night sky that turns listeners into explorers.”
In his afterword, Schools discusses Garcia’s tendency to “display his own frailty in the service of the song,” and his connection to his fans. “These are just some of the attributes of a human being who led without leading, who conveyed his own truth better through his music than he was able to do through the spoken word…and who lived the majority of his life onstage being part of a performance troupe that went far beyond the sum of its parts,” the bassist writes. “And luckily for those of us who want and need to remember such experiences we have a vast recorded archive of music, millions of words both scholarly and lay, and in our hands now these magnificently telling photographs by Jay Blakesberg so that we can always queue up the memories of our shared experiences with a rare human being known as Jerry Garcia and his equally rare cohorts.”