RIP Vince

Discussion in 'Grateful Dead and Phish' started by dhs, Jun 3, 2006.

  1. dhs

    dhs Senior Member

    Thanks for all the good times. Hope you enjoy the great jam in the sky with Jerry and the rest of the family that's left us
  2. Vince Welnick? Damn. I really liked him....he was actually a wacky guy.....i preferd him over Bruce....He will be missed....
  3. mulephan

    mulephan Member

    RIP Vince
  4. ramblin'rose

    ramblin'rose kindness

    fare you well, vince
  5. JerryWobbles

    JerryWobbles Member

    Vince I remember seeing you in missing man formation and asking us if "we were ready to go home yet" hahaha we knew what you meant, and encored with long way to go home, man thanks for the good music, the laughs :)
  6. _chad_

    _chad_ Member

    very sad news
    RIP Vince
    they say it appears that he took his own life
    .......may the four winds blow you safely home
  7. timeoutofmind

    timeoutofmind So Many Roads...

    Fare you well my honey
    Fare you well my only true one
    All the birds that were singing
    Have flown except you alone

    Goin to leave this Brokedown Palace
    On my hands and my knees I will roll roll roll
    Make myself a bed by the waterside
    In my time - in my time - I will roll roll roll

    In a bed, in a bed
    by the waterside I will lay my head
    Listen to the river sing sweet songs
    to rock my soul

    River gonna take me
    Sing me sweet and sleepy
    Sing me sweet and sleepy
    all the way back back home
    It's a far gone lullaby
    sung many years ago
    Mama, Mama, many worlds I've come
    since I first left home

    Goin home, goin home
    by the waterside I will rest my bones
    Listen to the river sing sweet songs
    to rock my soul

    Goin to plant a weeping willow
    On the banks green edge it will grow grow grow
    Sing a lullaby beside the water
    Lovers come and go - the river roll roll roll

    Fare you well, fare you well
    I love you more than words can tell
    Listen to the river sing sweet songs
    to rock my soul

  8. dhs

    dhs Senior Member

    As coincidence might have it, Dark Star Orchestra is playing about an hour from my home. So I'll be going tonight to dance and pay my respects. I'm sure they'll do a thoughtful tribute
  9. Mt. Star

    Mt. Star Member

    Man Vince was the bomb. He was one of my favorite to ever take up "the hot seat" of the Dead. RIP Vince:(
  10. drumminmama

    drumminmama Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    I'm amazed no one has mentioned Hamza.. he's all over my other lists...
    but here's the SF Chronicle article:
    Vince Welnick -- musician in Tubes, the Dead

    Carolyn Jones, Chronicle Staff Writer

    Sunday, June 4, 2006

    * Printable Version
    * Email This Article

    Vince Welnick, a keyboardist who possessed a fluid and precise style and played with the Tubes, Todd Rundgren and the Grateful Dead, died Friday in Sonoma County at the age of 55.

    The cause appears to be suicide, Sonoma County sheriff's department said.

    Mr. Welnick, whom friends called a gentle and sensitive man, was classically trained and spent hours practicing each day. Although he was a member of the Dead for just five years, until the band folded after the death of guitarist Jerry Garcia, he left an indelible mark on his bandmates.

    "He was a good soul, a very sweet guy," said band spokesman Dennis McNally. "He was also an exceptionally competent keyboardist."

    In a statement posted on its Web site, the band said, "His service to and love for the Grateful Dead were heartfelt and essential. He had a loving soul and a joy in music that we were lucky to share. Our Grateful Dead prayer for the repose of his spirit: May the four winds blow him safely home."

    Mr. Welnick was born in Phoenix, where he started playing piano as a kid. He and friends put together a garage band called the Beans, which became the Tubes when they moved to San Francisco in 1969.

    "Thank God for rock 'n' roll, because it was a place for all us skinny artistic kids to go when it was 115 degrees outside and we didn't fit in anywhere else," said Michael Cotten, a member of the Tubes who designed many of the band's album covers and elaborate stage shows.

    The Tubes toured constantly, and their rowdy antics and energetic shows -- which integrated rock music, video technology and outlandish costumes and sets -- earned them a devoted following. The band recorded more than a dozen albums and scored hits with "White Punks on Dope" in 1975 and "Talk to Ya Later" in 1981.

    "It was an amazing time. We played everywhere, and I don't think Vince ever missed a show," said Tubes vocalist Fee Waybill. "But even with all the success, we were still a hippie band from San Francisco. We all lived together, traveled on the same bus, shared everything."

    Throughout his time with the Tubes, Mr. Welnick also played with Todd Rundgren.

    Mr. Welnick auditioned for the Dead in 1990 after keyboardist Brent Mydland died of a drug overdose. He was among a handful of musicians who sought the job, and he immediately impressed the band.

    "He just magically appeared, and he had the attributes they were looking for," McNally said.

    Mr. Welnick cherished his years with the Dead and thoroughly appreciated both the tradition and hoopla of Deadhead lore and of the band, McNally said.

    His soulful, high harmony vocals and classical training were a good fit for the band, and his "moment to shine" came whenever the band played the Who classic "Baba O'Riley," which begins with an instantly recognizable keyboard passage, McNally said.

    It "opens with one of the most amazing riffs in rock 'n' roll," he said. "Vince was great at that."

    Mr. Welnick was devoted to his craft and spent hours a day practicing for most of his life, friends said. He was especially proud of his Boesendorfer piano, which is the piano equivalent to a Stradivarius violin.

    "His fingers just flew on that thing," Cotten said.

    Mr. Welnick was close to Garcia, and when the guitarist died of a heart attack in 1995, Mr. Welnick fell into a deep depression.

    "He was extremely shattered by Jerry's death and was very frank about it," McNally said.

    Still, Mr. Welnick continued to perform and write. He formed the band Missing Man Formation and performed with Ratdog, a band featuring Dead guitarist Bob Weir and bassist Rob Wasserman.

    One of the highpoints of his post-Dead career came in April 2005 when the Tubes had an impromptu reunion at the Rio Theater in Santa Cruz.

    Five of the original members were playing, and Waybill invited other alumni. They all wound up onstage, playing together.

    "It was amazing, like walking on air," said Cotten, who is working on a Tubes documentary.

    "The place was packed. People went nuts," Waybill said. "It was a great, great night. Vince was always up for things like that. He was really excited about playing with the Tubes again."

    And so it was that Mr. Welnick's death came as such a shock.

    "A few of us were just talking about Vince today and about the incredible music he brought us," Cotten said. "What they call chops, that's what Vince had. That's what we want to remember."

    Mr. Welnick's death is the latest in a string of recent tragedies for the Dead. Three other members of the band's extended family have died since May 17 -- crew member Lawrence "Ram Rod" Shurtliff, drummer Hamza El-Din and road manager Jonathan Riester.

    He also is the fourth of the band's five keyboardists to die, after Ron "Pigpen" McKernan, Keith Godchaux and Mydland.

    "It's not a happy history," McNally said. "Each one of these guys had a fragility, which isn't that uncommon for musicians."

    Mr. Welnick is survived by his wife, Lori Welnick.
  11. forest420

    forest420 Senior Member

    R.I.P Vince
  12. drumminmama

    drumminmama Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    check out the pain and anger in this: (from Kimock list)
    bitter, bitter (language and graphic detail warning...

    As posted by the administrator of;

    Vince Welnick is gone. He was the sweetest human I have ever
    known. Kind,
    generous, funny and warm hearted. He was my friend. He was
    talented, so
    talented. I was lucky to know him. So, damned lucky to know him
    and Lori. God
    bless you, Lori. I'm so, so sorry.

    Vince never got over the cruel way that the Grateful Dead band
    treated him after Jerry died. He never got over the sorrow of
    losing Jerry,
    his own demons without his friend and could not understand how
    the remaining
    fellow band-members treated him like shit the past several

    I cannot possibly describe to you the hurt and anguish he felt
    when "The
    Dead" decided to have a "Family Reunion of the SURVIVING
    MEMBERS" of
    Dead, a band that he was no mere sideman for its last five
    years, but a full
    member of by order of Jerry Garcia. How damned insulting was it
    to have a
    "surviving members family reunion" and not invite your new
    brother? He was
    proverbial red-headed step-child to them. Did it occur to you
    how that hurt
    Bill, Bob, Phil, Mickey? The truth is that you selfish bastards
    did not care
    if it hurt him. He's a big boy, he just had to get over it,

    I remember seeing Todd Rundgen at the "Walk Down Abbey Road"
    show in
    Concord, CA around the same time when that "Family Reunion" was
    booked. He
    asked how
    Vince was, and I told him about this "family reunion" concert
    MEMBERS and how Vince was specifically not invited, but in fact
    was playing
    gig at a campground not far from the show. Todd said, "Uh,
    Vince isn't dead,
    isn't he a surviving member?" He got the irony. I got the
    irony, but I also
    saw the hurt like none of you can believe. Vince kept a brave
    face about it,
    trying to remain cheerful, hoping that somehow, someday the tide
    would turn,
    the phone would ring and it would be Bob Weir calling him.
    Calling just to
    say, "How are you, Vinny?" Something. Anything.

    I am certain that Jerry would have been completely disgusted
    with the
    terrible, cruel and despicable way that Vince was treated by
    the band, the
    management, etc. following his death. The lack of compassion
    toward him,
    the ostracizing he felt burned and hurt Vince very deeply. He
    was a
    sweet soul. He just couldn't handle the rejection. He and I
    spent hours and
    hours talking about these things, trying to get the demons out,
    which led to
    him pouring out his heart when that show happened, right on
    this website.

    I told Vince to get his story out, tell everybody what happened
    on that
    Ratdog bus, tell them everything. Tell them how Bob and Ratdog
    sent him,
    overdosed on the tour bus, to a hospital alone in the back of a
    taxi cab,
    without a friend in site, and had him checked in as John Doe,
    while they
    the show anyway. Tell them, Vince how you were despondent over
    life-threatening cancer, a simultaneous diagnosis of Emphysema,
    and instead
    staying home to try to heal and get immediate surgery, how you
    chose to give
    fans the ill-fated summer 95 Dead tour. Tell them how nobody in
    the band even

    acknowledged, though they damned well knew, that Vince was very

    Tell them Vince, I said, how you didn't want to let the fans and
    the band
    down, and how eery it was on the tour knowing all these people
    who were your
    "friends" never asked how you were while on the road or even
    stepped aside
    you to acknowledge that struggle you were facing. Tell everyone,
    Vince, how
    when you returned from the road, and Jerry was dead, how you
    were flung into
    the hell of depression facing lung disease, cancer and now your
    and how you saw your world crash around you ever more when
    months later the
    band unceremoniously announced it was over. Tell them Vince,
    tell everyone
    get the demons out.

    Even more amazing than the band being cold to him, I could
    never understand
    why so-called "dead heads" and "fans" spent hours coming into
    this site and
    fucking with Vince, taunting him, posting evil, nasty lies
    about him. I
    finally had to turn this into a registration-only website to
    help shield my
    from the cruelness that some people took sport in on the
    message boards.
    Vince could take a joke, he could take a lot, but he finally
    couldn't take

    I had long, heart to heart talks with him for months before he
    told some of
    that story to you here, though not even close to all that
    detail. Vince
    didn't want to hurt the other guys, he just fucking wanted to
    play with

    Do you hear me, Phil? Do you hear me, Mickey? Do you hear me,
    Bobby? Do you
    hear me, Bill? That's all he fucking wanted, was to play music
    with you
    He loved you and you fucking treated him like shit. To see your
    message on today sickens me to no end, you fucking
    bunch of lying
    hypocrites. There is nothing left to hold back on now. Is it so
    hard to
    the man's phone calls? Is it so hard to understand what he went
    through back
    then and how far he had come since that dreadful night on that
    Ratdog bus?
    Where is the love? Where is the compassion? Hippy love?
    guys could have been nice to him, invited him along, not made
    him feel like
    an ass and like he was bugging you if he called. Are you happy,
    Cameron? Are
    you? Go fuck yourself.
  13. crummyrummy

    crummyrummy Brew Your Own Beer Lifetime Supporter

    I was floored when I heard.
    I will missim.

    wow I just read the above post.........I assumed he chose not to attend.....silly me.
  14. drumminmama

    drumminmama Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    that's only ONE person's take. We weren't in the room, we don't know what happened and I'm leaving sources alone while they get over these losses (four in three weeks)
  15. rphishin

    rphishin Member

    Totally agree, though Pigpen is my fave...I wish I could say I'm surprised but have lost a lot of close family and great friends young....
  16. My god hes dead man...shit...
  17. Dr. Lecter

    Dr. Lecter Member

    What a terrible surprise. I just found out today. He was my favorite of the Dead's piano guys, he had the most polished quality.

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