RIP Howard Wales: Jerry Garcia's Jazz Partner on 'Hooteroll?' Album

Jerry Garcia passes Howard Wales a joint on the cover of "Hooteroll?"

Jerry Garcia's jazz collborator Howard Wales has passed away. It was reported first by Eric Brenner at YouTube and at Wales' Facebook page. He was 77.


It is with profound sadness that we announce that Howard Wales passed away peaceably this afternoon. Please keep sending all your love and prayers for Howard’s new journey and rendezvous with the sun...

Posted by Howard Wales on Monday, December 7, 2020

We are devastated to report that Howard Wales has suffered a medical emergency and is in Hospice at Mercy Hospital in...

Posted by Howard Wales on Sunday, December 6, 2020

Wales played with Jerry Garcia on the one-off album Hooteroll? in 1971. They met at The Matrix in San Francisco where Wales was holding Monday night jam sessions. "I’ve always been a pretty unique player just like Jerry," Wales told Aquarian Drunkard in 2017. "I met Jerry and he came down and sat in with us on Monday evenings with Harvey Mandel."

Bassist John Kahn joined keyboardist Wales, Garica, another guitarist and a couple of drummers and horn players on the recording, produced by Alan Douglas and Doris Dynamite for Douglas Records. It sounds like everybody had been listening to Herbie Hancock & the Headhunters.

A live Wales-Garcia album recorded at The Matrix in 1970, Side Trips: Volume One, was released in 1986 by Grateful Dead Records.

Wales also played on American Beauty, one of two Dead albums celebrating a 50th anniversary in 2020 - organ on "Truckin'" and "Candyman" and piano "Brokedown Palace."

The back cover of "Hooteroll?" Note that the image is reversed.

The Hooteroll? Back Cover

Garcia famously passes a joint to Wales while sitting on a couch on the album's back cover. The photo was reversed as you can see below on the 1972 Howard Wales & Friends album, which also featured Garcia, who was righthanded and missed part of the his right middle finger.

RELATED: Garcia Hand Picked's Cannabis Flower and Gummies

Wales recycled the Garcia photo and used the original, non-flopped version for this live 1972 album.


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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.