Bob Weir discovered music at an early age, and began playing guitar at 13, after less than stellar success with the piano and trumpet. On New Year’s Eve 1963 16-year-old Weir met Jerry Garcia at a music store. The two spent the night playing together and decided to form a band, originally called Mother McCree’s Uptown Jug Champions until they heard The Beatles and decided to become a Rock ‘n Roll band, first called The Warlocks and then The Grateful Dead, with Weir on Guitar and many of the lead vocals for the next 30 years. Shortly before Garcia’s death in 1995, Weir formed a new band, Ratdog. He also joined the other surviving Dead members and played at two Deadheads For Obama Concerts. In 2009, he and Phil Lesh formed further, in honor of Ken Keysey’s Psychedelic Bus.
Over the years, Weir has done solo projects and formed several bands, the latest being Bob Weir And Wolf Bros., which recently participated in a CoVid fundraiser. Although The Dead never wanted to use their platform for politics, Weir is a social and environmental advocate and is a founding member of The Voter Registration Organization, Headcount.
When we interviewed Bob, he reminisced about the San Francisco music scene in the 60’s and Tom Donahue, the deejay who’s credited with starting the FM Underground movement and discovered groups like the Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane.