California-born guitar legend Jerry Garcia epitomised the free-wheeling West Coast rock scene of the 1970s. A prolific writer/performer Garcia performed thousands of concerts with The Grateful Dead whilst simultaneously leading the Jerry Garcia Band. His solo project enabled him to spread his artistic wings outside the hardcore blues influenced music of The Grateful Dead and he experimented with folk and country inspired music switching between guitar, banjo and pedal steel. His early life was marred by the death of his father in a tragic fishing accident and after a difficult period in his teens Garcia was ordered by his mother to enlist in the army. It was a short and undistinguished military career and he was dishonourably discharged after eight months. After leaving the army Garcia became drawn to a career in music, initially playing in folk and bluegrass combos. In 1965 he moved away from acoustic music and helped found The Warlocks who later that year became The Grateful Dead. Garcia's subsequent recording career with The Grateful Dead included 28 albums, eight of which sold more than a million copies. Many of the albums he appeared on outside The Grateful Dead also achieved considerable commercial success. Jerry Garcia continued to record and perform right up until his death from a heart attack in 1995 at the age of 53, the victim of a hard-living rock and roll lifestyle. The previous year the band grossed $52.4 million touring the US and were one of the most successful touring acts of the early 1990s. Garcia left behind a legacy of some truly memorable guitar playing on some of the most highly-regarded rock albums of the era.