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Grateful Dead - Mickey drums for Walter Cronkite (Walter Cronkite: A Celebration of Life 2009)

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“Mickey, when do we know we have ‘the groove’?”

After Walter Cronkite passed away on July 17, 2009, CBS hosted “A Celebration of Life” at Lincoln Center in New York that included personal reminiscences from many major figures including Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, and a dancing New Orleans-style funeral march around the aisles led by Wynton Marsalis.

The Rock Peak of the afternoon was the Grateful Dead’s drummer Mickey Hart sharing stories of his pal Walter, and leading Paul Winter, Zakir Hussain and Sikiru Adepoju in a drummer’s bon-voyage to the man for whom the term “news anchor” was first coined.

Not too many bands in the history of rock n roll bridge the worlds of psychedelic tripping and sleeping in the park to presidential schmoozing and sleeping in the Lincoln bedroom, but the Dead have been woven into both since their friend Al Gore was first sworn in.  Mickey Hart, who has scored music for everything from the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympics to Apocalypse Now, and has been leading The Dead’s Rhythm Devils on trance-evoking drum journeys for over 40 years, takes yet another step beyond the traditional drum circle to present this World Beat tribute to a most worldly and Beat man.

And you’re gonna love the part about, “Mickey ... when do we know we have ‘the groove’?”

 

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