I was listening to the Pink Fairies today and thought I heard a piece of the Dead in their version of Chuck Berry’s Johnny B. Goode. So, I found a live dead version from Winterland in 1978. Here it is.
What I like about the Fairies is they respect the structure of Berry’s song, but they twist it into something a little faster, a little more grand, without losing the rock. The sound here sucks, but as much as I cherish my memory of the Dead playing this classic, I’m loving this contemporaneous mess from the Pink Fairies. And this was 1971, when analog reigned. On the stream I was getting today from Google Music the sound had been cleaned up considerably.
Of course, Chuck Berry’s version is the best.