Phil Lesh is inextricably linked with The Grateful Dead, the great American group with whom he played for four decades. Although he was trained on trumpet and violin, Lesh began playing his trademark bass when he joined the R&B group The Warlocks in 1965. After evolving into The Grateful Dead, Lesh became an integral musician and composer for the group's innovative acid rock style. In later years Lesh became the custodian of the group's recorded catalogue, remixing and editing re-releases and new live albums. Aside from the experimental 1975 oddity Seastones, Lesh did not release any solo projects until the late 90s. With the Grateful Dead 'retired', and having undergone a successful liver transplant, he released his live solo debut Love Will See You Through in 1999. Credited to Phil Lesh Friends, the album featured contributions from Jorma Kaukonen, Prairie Prince and Pete Sears among others. Other musicians have contributed to subsequent albums, including members of Little Feat, Phish and The Zen Tricksters. He has also worked intermittently with The Other Ones, alongside former Grateful Dead colleagues Bob Weir and Mickey Hart.
Followers: Mike Gordon, Robert Hunter, Byron House
Influenced By: Charles Mingus, Johann Sebastian Bach, John Cage...