On the heels of yesterday’s discussion of raps in Dead songs with Blow Away I submit exhibit B in the discussion.
This version of Turn On Your Lovelight does NOT contain one of Pigpen’s famous raps and I, for one, don’t think the song suffers at all for it.
This version is certainly more concise than some others that stretch over the 20 minute mark, but the absence of the rap lets the band get down to brass tacks and say what they need to say. All killer, no filler.
Your mileage may vary, of course. Let me know in the comments what you think.
Again it’s Jerry and Pigpen who seem to lead the group effort here, but Bobby does add some groovy over-driven guitar work as well. The guitars continue to build. It sounds like they’re doing a bit of Allman-esque harmonizing in there a bit as Pigpen continues to work his way through the vocal sections. During the next percussion break you can hear a few vocal false starts from Pigpen. Finally he starts in, and Jerry and Bob join in for some call and response, adding a classic R&B/Soul motif to this psychedelic rocker. After mellowing out a bit, the band begins to build again around the 7 minute mark. Jerry muffs the beginning but eventually offers some guitar commentary, while Bobby cuts and slashes in his own right. The song ends on a high note, with that old familiar chord progression before the band draws it out. A brief “thank you” from Pig seals the deal.