GRATEFUL DEAD--My grudge against the Dead has little to do with the group, whose singing, playing and songwriting ability and charisma are universally acknowledge. It's just that every Dead freak I've known insists on playing Dead albums endlessly or sitting me down to hear "just the greatest song you've ever heard," They're not my favorite group, but it doesn't matter. Anyone going to this concert no doubt planned two months ago to attend. Be grateful the concert isn't taking place in New York where the smoking pleasures Dead audiences indulge in now earn new Yorkers life sentences.
LOGGINS & MESSINA, JESSE COLIN YOUNG--I think Loggins & Messina are boring. I think Jesse Colin Young is terrific. Perhaps the judgements seem inconsistent, since Young and L & M both play a lot of back-to-the-land-type country-rock. But Young's music is more innovative, more influenced by jazz, and his voice reeks sincerity although he doesn't take himself too seriously. Sometimes, Young 's attempts to sing blues fall through, but he sets his sights high. This should be a good concert.
ASHFORD AND SIMPSON--Advance reviewers have given high praise to soul singer-songwriters Nicholas Ashford and valerie Simpson. Sanders Theatre is Harvard's best place to hear good music and singing. This concert may be the most promising for non-Dead freaks seeking Saturday night music.
GORDON LIGHTFOOT--Lightfoot is a fine old folkie getting better with age. An excellent guitarist, he also has a deep, hypnotic voice which fits his Canadian lumberjack image. He gives concerts in Boston all too rarely.
GREATFUL DEAD--Sat. Dec. 1 at the Boston Music Hall, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tickets at the box office only.
LOGGINS & MESSINA, JESSE COLIN YOUNG--Thurs. Nov. 29 at the Bostob Music Hall, 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., $4.50-$6.50.
ASHFORD & SIMPSON--Sat. Dec. 1 at Sanders theatre, 8:30 p.m., $3.50. Tickets available at Holyoke Center.
GORDON LIGHTFOOT--Sun. Dec. 3 at Symphony Hall, 8:00 p.m., $4.00-$6.00.