With the presidential race heating up in America, one candidate has been embraced by the live music/jam community more than others: Bernie Sanders. Interestingly, it seems the Sanders family has some love for the community as well, as Sanders’ wife Jane O’Meara Sanders recently spoke about being a fan of the Grateful Dead and Phish, and even attending the Woodstock Festival, in an interview with Bloomberg.
At first glance, that information is enough to make even the casual fan grin. “From Woodstock To White House?” – certainly an eye-catching headline, but a closer look at the episode of “With All Due Respect” shows a more amateur side to the fandom of Mrs. Sanders.
When asked about Woodstock, Sanders recalls: “Listening to the music was unbelievable, but what was fun was they had—it was raining all the time so everyone was jumping in the mud, it was fantastic.” The hosts ask for her favorite musical moment from the experience, and she says that there were just too many to count. Fair enough. The festival was 47 years ago, and Mrs. Sanders definitely gets some street cred for being there.
The hosts then ask her about her taste in music, and she replies that she likes the Grateful Dead “and now Phish.” They ask how many Grateful Dead shows she’s been to, and Sanders replies that she had kids early in life and never got a chance to see the band perform live. “A Deadhead who hasn’t seen The Dead,” they muse.
It gets even rougher, as Mrs. Sanders struggles to identify what her favorite Grateful Dead song is. The hosts wind up helping her out, offering up “Ripple” and “Truckin'” before she recognizes the latter by its name. Phew. She explains that remembering song names was never her cup of tea.
All in all, however, things could be much worse. At least the Sanders family isn’t listening to Nickelback.