Friday, September 30, 2005

Rockers play tribute to Grateful Dead


From The Post:

The JiMiller Band will honor the Grateful Dead this weekend at Dead Night at the Blue Gator in hopes of building an Athens fan base.

by Kenny Miles

5-member group still truckin' 18 years after getting start Cleveland jam band mainstay JiMiller - named after the lead singer and guitarist - is making their Athens debut this weekend at the Blue Gator, 63 N. Court St.
The JiMiller Band is a five-member jam band that performs original songs with a folk, classic rock 'n' roll and "Phish-blues" sound.

Occasionally, they perform Grateful Dead tunes to lure an audience.

"We started doing these all-Dead nights every once in a while in our hometown - and they went over so well we thought, why not take this on the road?" he said.

During the 1980s, Jim Miller had an opportunity to collaborate with Go Ahead, a band composed of the Grateful Dead members while Jerry Garcia was recovering.

"I'm excited to see how it's going to pan out," said Brenna Randel, special events coordinator for Court Street Management, which is sponsoring the show. "Jim Miller has a direct connection to the Dead and uses that as a hook to build a fan base."

For 18 years, Miller was front man for his previous band Oroboros, "the first jam band in the Midwest," Miller said. Oroboros built an Athens following.

"This is a homecoming for us," he said. "We are very excited for a celebration with our local fan base."
Last summer, Miller performed with famous artists such as Blues Traveler, Sheryl Crow and The Allman Brothers Band at the 10,000 Lakes Festival in Minnesota.

This past summer, the band opened for Little Feat at Cleveland's House of Blues.

"We have been doing these shows with great turnouts and packed houses," Miller said. "Finally, we are coming and cannot wait to play here."

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