Tuesday, December 06, 2016

"Oh, bummer." -- Jerry Garcia, December 6, 1969

If the popular myth has the decade of "The Sixties" reaching its cultural apotheosis in August 1969 on the green East Coast at The Woodstock Music & Art Fair, then its obituary was written less than four months later on this date in '69 on the dusty West Coast at Altamont Speedway. With Santana, Jefferson Airplane, Crosby Stills Nash & Young, and The Grateful Dead on the bill of the Altamont Free Concert along with the Rolling Stones, the plan was to recreate heaven rather than hell, but the Dead never took the stage and Jerry Garcia summed up the day with two words:

In the eternal American argument between Nick Carraway and Jay Gatsby about our ability to recreate the past, Nick won this round.

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