Jerry Garcia

Jerry Garcia

Birth Name



Also Known As

Jerome John Garcia
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Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Jerry has been honored by ice cream manufacturers Ben & Jerry. They created a flavor named after him called 'Cherry Garcia'. It is cherry ice cream with fudge flakes, and it became the most popular flavor ever put out. For a month after Jerry's death, the ice cream was made with black cherries as a way of mourning.

    • Jerry's cremated ashes were spread just after dawn on April 4, 1996 by Bob Weir and Deborah Koons Garcia along the Ganges River 155 miles north of New Dehli. The idea was that of Bob's, that came to him one night in a dream.

    • Jerry was honored by President Bill Clinton as being 'an American Icon' at the time of passing, and his memorial services were held in Golden Gate Park on August 13, 1995. Thousands of fans, some playing in drum circles, joined his family , bandmates, and friends to pay their last respects to the legend.

    • Jerry died on August 9, 1995 of a heart attack exacerbated by sleep apnea. He had struggled with tobacco and drug addiction for most of his adult life, and was staying at the Serenity Knolls drug rehab in Forest Knolls, California at the time of his passing.

    • Jerry was an avid reader and huge fan of cinema, his favorite work being Kurt Vonnegut's The Sirens Of Titan, owning the novel's film rights, struggling to adapt it with the likes of Al Franken.

    • Jerry studied art at the San Francisco Art Institute , making a second career out of painting. A series of neckties based on his paintings has made for a highly profitable business, with wild patterns and bright colors being the draw to most. As recent as 2005, ten years after his death, new styles and patterns continue to be sold at high-end men's stores.

    • Jerry spent twenty five years with his various solo projects, the styles were varied. He played bluegrass, rock, folk, blues, country, jazz, gospel, reggae, electronic music, and jazz band.

    • Jerry had numerous side projects in addition to his career with the Grateful Dead, including the 'Jerry Garcia Band'. He was also involved with the 'Black Mountain Boys', Legion of Mary, and the 'Jerry Garcia Acoustic Band'.

    • Jerry lived in the heart of Haight Ashbury district in 1967 and played at the Human Be-In, which inaugurated the 'Summer of Love'.

    • Jerry played with the 'Warlocks' for a year in 1965, then added Phil Lesh and Bill Kreutzmann to the group, to become the Grateful Dead, that is when Jerry started to play the electric guitar.

    • Jerry was introduced to Bob Weir on New Year's Eve 1963, by mutual friend Bob Matthews. He then met Ron 'Pigpen' McKernan while playing in a local bluegrass and folk band called 'Mother McCree's Uptown Jug Champions'. The friends evolved into their own group in 1965, calling themselves the 'Warlocks'.

    • Jerry played as well as taught the banjo and acoustic guitar, mainly performing folk music, and bluegrass until 1964. One of his students during this time was Bob Matthews, who later engineered many of the Grateful Dead's albums.

    • Jerry, a poet named Robert Hunter, and David Nelson teamed up to make music together after he was discharged from the Army. Down the road, Robert went on to become the main lyricist for 'The Grateful Dead'.

    • Jerry started out by learning to play the banjo and piano, and moved onto the guitar.

    • Jerry's grandfather Manuel, earned his living as an electrician, but insisted that his sons and all of his grandchildren learn to play an instrument and sing.

    • Jerry was discharged from the United States Army on December 14, 1960, after eight AWOLs and two Court Marshalls.

    • Jerry witnessed the drowning death of his father in Northern California in the summer of 1947.

    • Jerry was named after composer Jerome Kern, his birth name being: Jerome John 'Jerry' Garcia.

    • He is a diabetic.

    • He is #13 on the Rolling Stone magazine's List of the '100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time'.

    • He grew up in the Excelsior District in San Francisco.

    • In 1994, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

    • Jerry dropped out of Balboa High School and enlisted in the United States Army on April 12, 1960. He was stationed at Fort Winfield in San Francisco's Presidio after completing Basic Training and Service School training as an auto maintenance helper at Ford Ord, California.

    • Jerry's right middle finger was accidentally amputated by his brother, Clifford 'Tiff' Garcia just below the first knuckle at age nine. Tiff was chopping wood with him on a family camping trip when the accident occured.

    • Jerry toured with the Grateful Dead as the guitarist and frontman from 1965-1995 almost constantly, they had a die-hard fan base known as 'deadheads', who were known for their loyalty and devotion to the group. Some of the 'deadheads' dedicated their enire lives to the band, following them from concert to concert selling handmade goods, arts & crafts to get by.

  • Quotes