Simple Twist Up Dave

Originally Performed ByTrey Anastasio
Appears On
Music/LyricsAnastasio, Marshall, Herman
HistorianScott Bernstein (ScottyB)
Last Update2011-10-03


A play on the title of Bob Dylan's Blood On The Tracks tune "Simple Twist of Fate," "Simple Twist Up Dave" was debuted at TAB's "quasi-stealth" Summer Tour 2001 tour opener at the original Higher Ground in Winooski, VT on 07/04/01. It was part of a large group of songs premiered that night that also included "Cayman Review," "Moesha," "Every Story Ends In Stone," "Quantegy," "Mr. Completely," "Money, Love and Change," "Alive Again" and "Flock of Words." "STUD" has since been performed by every variation of Trey's solo bands since its debut with the notable exception of the G.R.A.B. project with Mike Gordon, Joe Russo and Marco Benevento in 2006.

By the Summer of 2001, TAB had grown to an octet with the addition of keyboardist Ray Paczkowski and Russell Remington on tenor sax and flute helping the group to achieve the "swing band" sound similar to that of King Sunny Adé and Fela Kuti in that each musician played "small parts that are intertwined together" into a greater whole. "Simple Twist Up Dave" was one of Trey's first originals to make use of the format. 

TAB, "Simple Twist Up Dave" – 10/31/06, Austin, TX

Following two verses, over a dozen shouts of "Simple Twist Up Dave" and a Trey solo of varying lengths, the tune acts as a springboard for improvisation and over its first three years spawned plenty of memorable jams. 

From 2001 to 2003, it wasn't rare for "Simple Twist Up Dave" to be performed at two shows in a row. There were rarely complaints thanks to the heavy doses of improvisation in each version. After shelving the song for G.R.A.B. Tour, it came back with a vengeance during the Fall of 2006. "STUD" hasn't quite reached the heights of the early '00s of late. For one of the better takes from recent years, seek out 2/20/11.

Notable versions of "Simple Twist Up Dave" include its debut on 7/4/01 without Ray Paczkowski and Russell Remington; the intense opener from 7/24/01; Fishman sitting in for 6/16/02; the "split" version from 6/22/02 featuring a reprise after a percussion parade and encore break; a 21-minute take that explores a number of interesting jam spaces from 6/4/03; and 70 Volt Parade's more rock-oriented approach on 5/14/05. To see how far from the song's structure TAB could take "Simple Twist Up Dave," listen to the majestic 30-minute version from 6/11/02.

While a studio version of "Simple Twist Up Dave" has yet to be released, Trey has put out a couple of live versions on Plasma (from 11/1/02) and on Original Boardwalk Style (from 12/31/06).

TAB, "Simple Twist Up Dave" – 02/26/11, Columbus, OH

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