Marty Weinberg interviewed an usher during a set break in the Saturday show at the Capitol Theater, Port Chester.
MARTY: Hello, sir. Do you enjoy being usher here?
USHER: Uh, sometimes. Not when I have to hassle people. [...]
MARTY: Was there ever a concert where you never had to hassle people?
MARTY: When? Besides the Dead.
USHER: Uh, no, the Dead is the most - the worst one to hassle people.
USHER: 'Cause of the fire laws the way they are, when everybody smokes here - you know, like, it's a bummer.
MARTY: Well why do you have to keep people off the aisles?
USHER: 'Cause that's another fire law. [There's] people in Port Chester, particularly the fire commissioner, who want to close down this theater. [to audience] Don't smoke that joint! Pass it around.
MARTY: I see you're blackmailing with us.
USHER: No, man. [...]
MARTY: Yeah, but like, if there's a fire here, first of all man, don't matter if the aisles are cleared or not, they're gonna be filled up in two seconds anyway.
USHER: Oh, sure, but if there are people in the aisle...people sitting, not standing so much - lot of times, the people just come down and sit down in the aisles - and if they're sitting, like, you just run 'em over.
[Someone in the audience asks something.]
USHER: That's the fire marshals.
MARTY: What are they doing in here? How come there's only one -
USHER: [to audience] I suggest you put that out! 'Cause I don't wanna lose my job.
MARTY: There was only one last night. How come there's so many tonight?
USHER: Because the fire commissioner himself is here.
MARTY: Is that the guy who was around last night, that funny guy -
USHER: He wasn't here last night. First time he's ever been here.
MARTY: Oh, does he like it? Does he like the concert?
USHER: No, he wants to close the place down.
MARTY: Is he gonna be able to?
MARTY: Yeah? There's gonna be a concert tomorrow night, I hope.
USHER: I hope.
MARTY: Yeah, good. Sunday night concert's always the best.
USHER: Yeah, this one has been the best since Thursday.
MARTY: No, last night was pretty good, Thursday -
USHER: No, tonight's better. Well, it has a lot to do with the audience, tonight's audience is much better than last night.
MARTY: Well, last night they did some pretty good stuff - like, Thursday night [...]
USHER: It was a really good concert last night. But like, if they play the same tonight as they did last night, I think they're playing better.
MARTY: Well first of all, it's only like ten after 12 now, and last night - by the ten-minute break, it was 1:00 in the morning already.
USHER: Yeah, I know.
MARTY: They haven't been playing as much tonight. Maybe they'll play more tomorrow night. Usually the last night concerts are the best.
USHER: Well there are gonna be so few people here tomorrow, compared to the other ones, though.
MARTY: They'll sell out eventually, probably - sell all the $5.50s, at least. It looked like you almost sold out on Thursday night.
USHER: Well no, you see, that's [a fallacy]. When we sell out, it means there are at least 300 people standing.
MARTY: It means you're selling standing seats?
USHER: No. Free passes.
MARTY: Oh, I see.
Audience member: How many people are on the Dead guest list?
USHER: On the Dead guest list? Not very many, 14, 15 tonight.
[Audience member asks a question.]
USHER: Yeah, but it doesn't work that way. The people on the Dead list are backstage, those are the people we see in back of the equipment. [some discussion with audience member] For this show, they're not even letting ushers go backstage.
MARTY: They're not? Do they usually let ushers go backstage?
USHER: Oh, yeah. [It's] a big thrill standing on the side watching somebody.
MARTY: Huh, I'm really disappointed with the -
USHER: The easiest concert we ever had was James Taylor.
USHER: Everyone just sat here in total -
?: I just snorted some cocaine! And I feel good.
?: You did, great. Great!
MARTY: Is the fire commissioner - what about the police department, are there -
USHER: I believe there are two uniformed policemen in here and four non-uniformed.
MARTY: Is anyone busted in here?
USHER: Uh, one of my friends was busted earlier this evening.
MARTY: For possession or selling?
MARTY: In the theater?
USHER: Yeah. He's smoking pot and the cop walked right up to him.
[A nearby audience member is surprised: "Really? You hear that?" Tells a friend that someone "got taken out by a cop."]
USHER: Good on Howard, ran after him.
MARTY: He did?
USHER: Yeah. He managed to talk the cop into letting the kid go.
MARTY: That's good - are they busting kids outside here at all?
USHER: A lot.
[An audience member asks the usher who someone by the door is.]
MARTY: How'd you get a Grateful Dead t-shirt?
USHER: One of my friends made it. Two dollars.
MARTY: He made it? Two dollars? I'd like to buy one!
USHER: Go to Flushing, Union Street. Tell him -
MARTY: How would you like to buy some tapes of the Dead?
USHER: No chance.
MARTY: I have Dead tapes...