Tribute bands sometimes find themselves stifled by having to hew to the music made by those they're emulating. In many cases, they're little more than cover bands with a singular focus. But with Crazy Fingers, a Grateful Dead tribute band, that's never been the case. They not only emulate the Dead, they also have released two albums of original music with a third possibly on the way. Now, with the tragic death of singer/multi-instrumentalist Corey Dwyer -- a man they viewed as their creative mainstay - the band is forced to take stock of their legacy.
Formed as an impromptu ensemble to provide the entertainment for a private party in Delray Beach on Halloween 1990, the original band -- initially consisting of bassist Bubba Newton, drummer/vocalist Peter Lavezzoli, former guitarists Al Zilinsky and Mike Greene -- turned their mutual affection for the Grateful Dead into an ongoing enterprise.
"There are countless stories of bands getting together in such a fashion," Lavezzoli suggests. "But in this case, it was the beginning of a 24-year journey that is continuing, because of the endurance of the Grateful Dead's music and also the South Florida community that has supported Crazy Fingers throughout all of our musical endeavors."