One morning below an ominous sky, my pal Michael texted me a video of the Grateful Useless performing “Seems to be Like Rain.” He was proper as, effectively, rain. Shortly afterward, the heavens opened and a deluge fell.
Sending an unsolicited musical and meteorological warning is a kindness Deadheads the world over routinely present each other. After grabbing my umbrella, I listened to the present and needed to agree. The March 28, 1981, Rockpalast Competition efficiency of the tune at Grugahalle in Essen, Germany, is hard to beat.
It’s the actual present date that bought me pondering later that soggy autumn afternoon. When
was pouring out his coronary heart and soul close to the top of the primary set I, midway world wide, was months away from my tenth birthday.
At that second, my love of music was nascent. The primary cassette I recall ever receiving—right here’s to chill mothers—was “Tattoo You” by the Rolling Stones, which wasn’t launched till later that summer time. But the Useless had been hovering.
Good music, and the Grateful Useless significantly, is like oxygen to me now, however the Grugahalle present date referred to as to thoughts one thing apparent but essential: The Useless jammed earlier than me, the Useless jammed in my lifetime, and the Useless’s sound will echo lengthy after they, as
sang, lay me down one final time.
The lesson of this distant live performance was something however disconcerting. It’s assurance that what’s true, good and exquisite objectively exists exterior the self. That is true in time and—much more essential—true in eternity. The better the reality, the better the longing to comprehend it, and the best reality of all is God.
The Grateful Useless helps me see how the earthly magnificence I admire is however a foretaste of pleasure exterior time that’s to return. Thanks, Jerry.
Mr. Kerrigan is an legal professional in Charlotte, N.C.
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Appeared within the January 22, 2022, print version.