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The Unofficial 31 Days Of Dead - 2014
Clicking the, "Read Daily Write-Up" link will bring you down the page to read a review of, or the reason for making, the pick. At the bottom of each write-up is a link to where you can stream the music, and sometimes youtube video links, images of concert posters, concert reviews, and other miscellaneous goodies.
2014 Track Listing
1. Help on the Way > Slipknot! > Franklin's Tower (9.6.83, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, CO) - Read Daily Write-Up
2. Let It Grow (1.11.78, Shrine Auditorium, Los Angeles, CA) - Read Daily Write-Up
3. Ramble on Rose (9.12.91, Madison Square Garden, New York, NY) - Read Daily Write-Up
4. Playing In The Band (7.1.73, Universal Amphitheatre, Universal City, CA) - Read Daily Write-Up
5. Ship Of Fools (12.5.79, Uptown Theater, Chicago, IL) - Read Daily Write-Up
6. China Cat Sunflower > I Know You Rider (5.25.74, Campus Stadium, UCSB, Santa Barbara, CA) - Hidden Track - Big River (5.25.74, Campus, USCB - Santa Barbara, CA) - Read Daily Write-Up
7. Sugaree (9.6.80, State Fairgrounds, Lewiston, ME) - Read Daily Write-Up
8. Jack Straw (4.6.87, Meadowlands Arena, East Rutherford, NJ) - Read Daily Write-Up
9. Bird Song (3.7.81, Cole Field House) - Looks Like Rain > - Read Daily Write-Up
10. Eyes Of The World > China Doll (10.29.73, Kiel Auditorium, St. Louis, MO) - Read Daily Write-Up
11. Sugar Magnolia (8.26.71, Gaelic Park, Bronx, NY) - Read Daily Write-Up
12. Scarlet Begonias > Fire On The Mountain (9.2.78, Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ) - Read Daily Write-Up
13. Easy Wind (5.7.70, Dupont Gymnasium M.I.T., Cambridge, MA) - Read Daily Write-Up
14. St. Stephen (6.24.70, Capitol Theater, Port Chester, NY) - Read Daily Write-Up
15. Not Fade Away > Black Peter > Not Fade Away > Around & Around (10.6.77, Activity Center, Arizona State Univ., Tempe, AZ) - Read Daily Write-Up
16. Stage Banter > Golden Road To Unlimited Devotion > New Potato Caboose (5.5.67, Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco, CA) - Read Daily Write-Up
17. The Wheel > Jam (10.3.76, Cobo Arena, Detroit, MI) - Read Daily Write-Up
18. Comes A Time (5.1.77, The Palladium, New York, NY) - Read Daily Write-Up
19. Playin In The Band Reprise > Uncle John's Band Reprise > Morning Dew (10.12.84, Civic Center, Augusta, ME) - Read Daily Write-Up
20. Iko Iko (11.2.85, Richmond Coliseum, Richmond, VA) - Read Daily Write-Up
21. Estimated Prophet (10.26.89, Miami Arena, Miami, FL) - Read Daily Write-Up
22. Standing on the Moon (8.21.93, Autzen Stadium, Univ. of Oregon, Eugene, OR) - Read Daily Write-Up
23. Here Comes Sunshine (2.23.74, Winterland Arena, San Francisco, CA) - Read Daily Write-Up
24. Stagger Lee (12.16.78, Nashville Municipal Auditorium, Nashville, TN) - Read Daily Write-Up
25. Lazy Lightnin' > Supplication (2.17.79, Oakland Coliseum, Oakland, CA) - Read Daily Write-Up
26. Deal (10.17.83, Olympic Arena, Lake Placid, NY) - Read Daily Write-Up
27. Dark Star (2.15.73, Dane County Coliseum, Madison, WI) - Read Daily Write-Up
28. The Other One > Me And Bobby McGee > The Other One (9.28.72, Stanley Theatre, Jersey City, NJ) - Read Daily Write-Up
29. Cryptical Envelopment > Death Don't Have No Mercy (2.22.69, Dream Bowl, Vallejo, CA) - Read Daily Write-Up
30. The Eleven > Caution (Do Not Stop On Tracks) > Feedback (10.20.68, Greek Theatre, Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA) - Read Daily Write-Up
31. Ripple (9.20.70, Fillmore East, New York, NY) - Read Daily Write-Up
11/8/70 – Capitol Theater, Port Chester, NY - Read Daily Write-Up
- Dark Star >
- The Main Ten >
- Jam >
- Dancin’ In The Streets
- Not Fade Away >
- GDTRFB >
- Not Fade Away >
- Good Lovin’
Help On The Way > Slipknot > Franklin's Tower
9/6/83 - Red Rocks Amphitheater, Morrison, CO
Help On the Way > Slipknot > Franklin's Tower is always a great way to start things off. The joyous triad of songs has it all - the power and beauty of Help; the spaciness and instrumental intricacies of Slipknot; and the utter joy of Franklins. The lyrics are some of Hunter’s best - "without love day to day insanity's king" and "if you get confused listen to the music play."
Help > Slip > Frank returned to the Dead’s repertoire in 1983 after a 6-year absence. The three versions played in September 1983 are probably the best of the 80s (Boise, Red Rocks and Santa Fe). This version from Red Rocks is my personal favorite.
Help on the Way explodes right out of the gate. Slipknot! is searing, mindbending and exquisite. The jamming is fast paced and trippy. Franklin's Tower is joyous. Jerry's final solo is like riding a tidal wave. Incredible performance! Back to Top.
LMA Link: https://archive.org/details/gd83-09-06.sbd.clugston.5489.sbeok.shnf
Let It Grow
1/11/78 – Shrine Auditorium, Los Angeles, CA
This ridiculously powerful Let It Grow performed in a somewhat under-the-radar show is typical of the bands aggressive, take-no-prisoners style that lasted from the Fall 1977 through the middle of 1978. The rougher-edged, more hard-driving rock sometimes missed the mark for ragged execution but more often than not yielded high-energy results and some very memorable moments of greatness in songs like Let It Grow (1/11/78 & 10/29/77), St. Stephen (1/11/78 & 1/22/78), Half-Step and Truckin' (both from 11/6/77), Might as Well (10/29/77), Casey Jones (10/28/77 & 10/2/77) and U.S. Blues (4/12/78).
This version of Let It Grow is endorsed by Grateful Dead Projects, a project I was fortunate enough to participate in with a great group of friends. Back to Top.
LMA Link: https://archive.org/details/gd78-01-11.sbd.cotsman.13190.sbeok.shnf
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1978/1/11/let-it-grow
View of Stage: http://imgur.com/BQNws5K
Let It Grow Stealie: http://imgur.com/bn0xfTY
Ramble On Rose
9/12/91 - Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
Coming right after the legendary show with Branford Marsalis on 9/10/91, this over-the-top, sleeper version of Ramble on Rose is a monster. Jerry goes for broke and nails the NYC reference to a typically raucous home crowd at Madison Square Garden. I'm not a huge fan of MIDI but this one is super. Jerry crafts a calliope-sounding MIDI solo for the ages that conjures up the image of Wolfman Jack and Frankenstein going to the circus on a head full of acid. Following the solo Jerry is really feeling it and ends with a tremendous vocal performance - "It ain't NEVER GONNA END" and "The WINE ain't sweeter." Back to Top.
YouTube (set 1): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UrvPeb-0S3w
Listen To The Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1991/9/12/ramble-on-rose
Ticket Stub - http://imgur.com/YPahGKq
Backstage Pass - http://imgur.com/Hnh5liz
MSG Billboard - http://imgur.com/udpwn7F
Crazy Otto - http://imgur.com/LrRjSPu
Playing In The Band
7/1/73 - Universal Amphitheatre – Universal City, CA
Excerpted from Deadlistening Blog: http://www.deadlistening.com/2008/08/1973-july-1-universal-amphitheatre.html
The middle of 1973 doesn’t get as much love as the more “historic” portions of the year near its end. But the Summer shows are the hidden jewel of the year. This show sits in the shadows of other 1973 shows, and, as with so many others like it from any year, its being regularly overlooked somehow makes it all the more special.
On this night, Playin’ In The Band didn’t close set one. It opened set two. And it is a monstrously large portion of the very marrow found within the bones of 1973. There were a lot of great Playin’s before the summer of 1973, but the song evolved around this time, and perhaps even on this very night. Maybe it was because of the set two placement, but this Playin’ In The Band demonstrates a few characteristics that would follow the song all the way into 1974 - it is enormous (25 plus minutes); it winds its way utterly outside of the semblance of what you could call the song itself; and it finds Jerry hinting numerous times within the jam back at the song’s head long before actually wrapping the song up. These combined elements would follow the song from the Summer of ’73 for years.
The exploration starts off with a prolonged luscious section of jazz-infused jamming in which Jerry changes his tone and inflection over and over again. Having Jerry’s guitar so directly in our face, we can fully discern each adjustment he makes in tone and volume. It’s like watching a painter adjust colors on his pallet before applying paint to canvas. Here, instead of the continual adjustments giving a sense of searching and frustration, Jerry is clearly feeling very, very good. The jam’s energy grows and the band begins to spiral as if into tightly wound pinwheels of music. After a time things settle way down, and the Playin’ theme appears. Just as it gets pronounced acutely enough to start the crowd clapping in appreciation of a great jam ending, the rug slips out from under everything and we enter an even more slippery jam section of ever-blossoming colors and sounds. We’re hardly ten minutes in.
Eventually they wind through a more aggressive portion of the jam, each member stretching out in multi-directions. Then, as we are bathing in everything there is to love about mid-‘70’s Playin’s, the music frays away completely and we find ourselves in a corner of the universe quite a bit further away from Playin’ than we’d gone before. The music almost completely fractures leaving the focus on Jerry playing an ascending and repetitive five chord pattern over and over again that haunts your heart like some forest of ghosts mingled with a time-imploding ride in outer space. Playin’ is absolutely gone, and we’ve arrived at a destination together with the band that could never be traced back home. The sheer beauty of this place is its own assurance that it will not be found again – a secret kept by the music itself. This is a measureless landscape of Space. Breathtaking. Gentle. Soul piercing.
From the absolute outer edges of this riveting passage, Jerry tosses the Playin’ theme back into the hall ever so lightly, and it coalesces the band right back into the jazz tinged jamming that so typified 1973. Now we’re following a path down million colored tree lined roads that float in ever-curving arches before our eyes - as if the landscape before us is undulating like a flag in a slow motion wind. That sense of tumbling over one’s step without fully falling is completely prevalent here. This goes on and on and on, over delivering everything known to be idyllic about the band in this year. Finally, the Playin’ theme is back again (for the third time?), and we amble slowly toward what seems to be the end portion of the song. But no. Jerry again drifts the theme out into the most delicate space before finally allowing it to truly return on the gentle breath of sunlight. We hit the song running, and you can’t help but know that this band is the master of their domain, utterly. No one can do what they do.
The sound quality of the AUD tape that circulated for years is among the best of the year – mastered beautifully by the Mouth Of The Beast team. The pure fidelity of the tape reflects just what you might expect from the team of Harvey Kaslow and Craig Todd, who also brought us the legendary 08/06/71 recording.
A soundboard recording just surfaced in 2014 and it would not surprise me if we will be seeing an official release of this relatively unknown weekend run in Universal City in 1973. Back to Top.
YouTube (Full show): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RiGWDLcXhMw
Listen To The Dead:
Charlie Miller SBD: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1973/7/1-3
Harvey Kaslow and Craig Todd AUD: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1973/7/1-1
Charlie Miller SBD: https://archive.org/details/gd1973-07-01.127028.sbd.miller.flac16
Harv Kaslow and Craig Todd AUD: https://archive.org/details/gd1973-07-01.fob.kaslow-todd.motb-0055.88528.flac16
Garcia - http://i.imgur.com/ZNC9Fa2.jpg
Ship of Fools
12/5/79 - Uptown Theater, Chicago, IL
A sublime rendition of one of the most criminally underrated songs in the entire Grateful Dead library - Ship of Fools. Jerry shines with beautiful vocals and a unique, extended solo. Brent's youthful vocal harmonies and delicate work on the Rhodes provide the perfect accompaniment. The sparseness and melancholy are heavy but absolutely gorgeous making this one of the best Brent-era versions ever performed. A treasure chest hidden in the galley of the SS Fools.
The Dead were clearly at one of their several creative peaks in late '79 as this performance demonstrates. And, it is easy to hear from this lovely matrix creation how locked-in the sound system was at the intimate Uptown Theater on this night. Back to Top.
Listen To The Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1979/12/5-5
Hunter's Trix Cover - http://i.imgur.com/7Wya0XR.jpg
Hunter's Trix Back - http://i.imgur.com/NzupoFk.jpg
Garcia - http://i.imgur.com/CzReCM1.jpg
Ship of Fools - http://i.imgur.com/vTksl2P.png
China Cat Sunflower > I Know You Rider, Big River (Hidden Track)
5/255/74 - Campus Stadium, UC Santa Barbara, Goleta, CA
Where has this China>Rider been all of my life? Searing, devastating, nearly brutal in tempo, this China Cat jam feels like Cumberland Blues or Big River. Billy is en fuego. Keith pushes Jerry to exhilarating heights about a minute before the Feelin’ Groovy/UJB jam and when it eventually arrives it is nothing short of joyous.
It’s amazing how different this aggressive playing sounds as compared with the laid-back, spacey version the band from Providence only a month later (i.e., 6/26/73, Dick’s Picks, Vol. 12). That kind of versatility demonstrates just how on top of their game this band was in 1974.
Oh, and the Big River - the “hidden” track here - is completely on fire and continues the frenetic energy that defines this entire show. Keith was having one hell of a day. His blazing solo here is only outdone by Garcia’s. Top 10? Maybe, just maybe.
This was a Saturday afternoon show and I found a humorous description of the scene posted on LMA by somebody who attended this show:
UCSB, 5/25/74. My first dead show. Brother passed out, my pal, our ride, busted for indecent exposure. Blonde bikini babe with bag of buds and bamboo bazooka bong. I'm the only memory for this mythic show.I can see,smell,& hear every moment. Purple weather balloon spewing purple gas. Sheriff's mounted on horse back. Clown face speaker stacks smiling in the wind. The twilight zone had opened up and sucked me inside. Haven't been the same since...thank god! opening act was Commander Cody and Lost Planet Airmen, Maria Muldaur, then Blue Grass Band
W/ Garcia Back to Top.
Ticket stub - http://i.imgur.com/2G0bO1s.jpg
Stage pass - http://i.imgur.com/sYFk13c.jpg
Promo - http://i.imgur.com/FE9u5mm.jpg
Phil - http://i.imgur.com/67m4nfY.jpg
Wall of Sound - http://i.imgur.com/3GeuraE.jpg
9/6/80 - State Fairgrounds, Lewiston, ME
Coming on the heels of amazing shows in Rochester (9/2), Springfield (93/) and Providence (9/4) - all of which have been officially released - comes a colossal tour-ending, outdoor show on a gorgeous day in Maine.
Here is a description of the idyllic scene as posted on LMA by a fan who was in attendance:
After dropping a tab, I remember dancing through the whole set. At one point, the clouds parted to let shafts of sun beam down and the whole crowd seemed to oohh and ahh and to practically lift off the ground as one. The playing was inspired, the crowd operating on some higher groove, the sunshine warm and mellow.
Sensing the chilled vibe, the Dead deliver and epic 5-hour show with many musical highlights including an all-time Sugaree. Here is the John Dwork wrote in the Deadhead's Taping Compendium:
Sugaree starts as tempered as ever. During the first brief instrumental, however, the band EXPLODES. Whoa! This is instantly amazing. But this is only the tip of the iceberg, as the next jam, the long one, breaks all records. Jerry starts to build on his trademark sixteenth-note-triplets-repeating-scale lick that the second Sugaree jam is famous for. And off he goes. The jam soars higher and higher...
Who knew that acoustic sets were just a few weeks away? It was a great time to be a Deadhead! Back to Top.
Larry Fox CD Covers: http://www.larry-fox.com/Content/CDCovers/GratefulDead800906.pdf
Spinning Dancer - http://i.imgur.com/ssEaGcm.jpg
Promo Poster - http://i.imgur.com/ooGMsiD.jpg
Band - http://i.imgur.com/Lr0i4cg.jpg
4/6/87 – Meadowlands Arena, East Rutherford, NJ
If you like big, powerful Jack Straw’s then be sure to check out this astonishing version. This Healy Ultramix source perfectly captures the manic energy that so typified an East Coast Dead show and which in turn fueled the band. Here, after the “Keep us on the run” verse Phil drops a few very heavy bombs that seem to capture Garcia’s attention. You can just imagine Jerry looking up over his glasses at Phil with raised eyebrows but otherwise stone-faced as he accepts to the challenge. Listen to the crowd swell as Jerry responds by furiously bending a single squealing note. It’s on! And, the rabid fans know it. Not to be outdone, Phil drops several devastating bombs that somehow by the grace of God did not level the entire Meadowlands sports complex, let alone the state of New Jersey. This whips the rest of the band up into a frenzied state as they annihilate their instruments into an enormous climax that is typically reserved only for the most epic of Morning Dews. What a version! Back to Top.
YouTube (Whole show-Jack Straw starts at about the 49:30 minute mark):https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPwCbJSLBsU
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1987/4/6/jack-straw
Backstage pass - http://i.imgur.com/B2ZJQxT.jpg
Phil Bombs - http://i.imgur.com/R3siDQI.jpg
Lincoln Tunnel Sign - http://i.imgur.com/f0DXcQP.jpg
Meadowlands – http://i.imgur.com/SX3tgGf.jpg
Hunter’s Lyrics - http://i.imgur.com/fDGdvOg.jpg
3/7/81 - Cole Field House, Univ. of Maryland, College Park, MD
An otherworldly, 17-minute Bird Song that finds the band taking a deep dive with soaring melodies, mesmerizing jazz, and trippy deep space. It's one of those all consuming versions where you can get so lost in the music that you begin asking yourself exactly what song you began listening to. As one would expect, this version is fully endorsed by the Grateful Dead Club: Back to Top.
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/STC3j8T.jpg
Backstage Pass - http://i.imgur.com/4dncGxN.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/UUpUlwu.jpg
Band on stage - http://i.imgur.com/BmezGLk.jpg
Eyes of the World > China Doll
10/29/73 - Kiel Auditorium, St. Louis, MO
Over the course of their career Eyes of the World was played in the first set only 8 time making its appearance there a bit of a rarity. Yet, some of the most revered versions were played in the first set - 8/6/74, 10/19/74, 8/13/75 and 6/18/74. Maybe they should have done it more often! While perhaps not at the same level, this lesser-known version from10/29/73 is another first set Eyes that deserves your attention. The jamming is fast and furious with Jerry peeling off jazzy butterfly licks between each of the verses. Part of what made Eyes so special in 1973-74 was the outro jam, sometimes referred to as the King Solomon's Marbles jam and this one is especially fiery. The transition into the ever-so-fragile China Doll begins with a devastating bomb of doom courtesy of Phil. This is a magnificent version. The band must have thought so too - listen to how may times they sing the "La, la, la's" at the end. Back to Top.
Listen To The Dead:
Ticket stub - http://i.imgur.com/uib88B8.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/Vq6tTsD.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/7ttwL6Z.jpg
Fractured - http://i.imgur.com/VlThoCp.jpg
Wake of the Flood Promo (released on 10/15/73) - http://i.imgur.com/DLN5fDJ.jpg
8/26/71 - Gaelic Park, Bronx, NY
The Dead in Da Bronx? Fuhgetaboutit. It's difficult to imagine the band playing below an elevated subway but then again they also played Roosevelt Stadium in Jersey City.
This show was originally billed for July 30 but was postponed due to a rainstorm that had been predicted (see ticket stub image). Oddly enough, legend has it that it never rained on July 30 but it did drizzle during the first set on August 26. Also, it should be noted that had the show taken place on its original date it would have been the day prior to the Yale Bowl which is famous for the dreamy trifecta of Playin > Dark Star > Bird Song. Finally, this show has the historical significance of being the last show the Dead performed featuring the original 5 members. The gravity of that statistic is not lost on me.
Back to the music. It's all too easy to fall prey to the reputation that 1971 Dead has been given: it isn't 1970, and it sure as hell isn't 1972. However, there is still a lot to like about the Dead in the summer of 1971. Although this would be Pigpen's last show until December, the band was raging as evidenced by high-energy shows like 8/6-7, 8/23-24 and the aforementioned Yale Bowl, all of which resurfaced when Donna Godchaux found the original reel-to-reel soundboard recordings on a houseboat that was own by Keith's parents in 2005. They became known as "The Houseboat Tapes" and have been officially released on Dick's Picks, Vol. 35 and Road Trip, Vol. 1, No. 3.
Like all of those summer shows, Gaelic Park is an absolute rocket ship. The energy beaming out of the band leaps off the recording. And, this rocking version of Sugar Magnolia defines that energy. The song is totally nailed. The vocal harmonies are (almost) album-perfect, the entrance into the Sunshine Daydream is explosive and Jerry's rapid guitar runs during the solo are breathtaking. Again, the energy just pours out of the music. The mighty Grateful Dead! Back to Top.
Listen To The Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1971/8/26/sugar-magnolia
Ticket stub - http://i.imgur.com/42OoCXT.jpg
Poster - http://i.imgur.com/X6ZQElq.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/3Qg8cIU.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/QEczbkd.jpg
Graffiti Subway - http://i.imgur.com/BkcrSSb.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/qIAMmKe.jpg
Scarlet Begonias > Fire on the Mountain
9/2/78 – Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ
Another hot day on a labor day weekend to see the Dead. New Jersey to boot. Remember Willie Nelson was supposed to be Waylon and Willie- guess Waylon Jennings wasn't doin' to well. Donna came out during Willie's set and sang Amazing Grace. This show had people talking about Egypt and the jumbotron even bid the Dead farewell on their journey after the show. Scarlet > Fire SDBD from this show is the best
Sat in the public area behind the stage. Recall seeing Jerry hitting on a big doobie and laying it on the amps in between songs. Donna was talking to a guy who was painting the whole scene behind the stage in between sets..
It was a hot wonderful day. Kieth and Donna came out and played with Willie. Jerry seemed ramped, or maybe it was me. At the end of the show, the large scoreboard was lit up inviting everyone to go to Egypt. None of knew if this was real or a prank.
Tickets were $15 -- an insanely high price at the time. (Other shows on the same tour were $7.50.) During Friend of the Devil Jerry sang, "Went down to the levy and the devil met me there/took my $15 BILL and vanished in the air." At the end of the show they flashed the news about Egypt on the scoreboard and it all made sense -- 50,000 - 80,000 people all paying $15 each -- we had just paid for the Dead's trip to Egypt. Ugh.
Changed my life forever, I heard and saw God on that day. I was standing on the floor to the bands right, about 100 feet from the stage… For a moment filling the stadium a golden face of an old man with a flowing beard, peaceful and pure love, I understood at that time I was being allowed to see something, an image I could understand, and it was God. Completely and utterly spaced, at some point I looked back towards the middle of the stadium and a hole opened in the middle of the stadium sound poured out, I could see and hear infinity, feel the universe in motion. If only words could describe...
Arrived the afternoon of the previous day, ticketless but optimistic. Kurt and I managed to purchase some tickets for twenty bucks a piece and began a long evening of commeraderie with the throngs of fellow adventurers in the parking lot. A good show. A memorable experience. I danced with a beautiful blonde girl who wore a crown of roses. She twirled in a print summer dress with bare feet. Very cool.
I still have the ticket stub from this show and it was The Grateful Dead, Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings. Well Waylon never showed and the Riders played in their place. I remember getting to the parking lot about 11:00 AM and the Riders were already playing. The Dead came on about 3:00 PM and played until about 7:00 PM. I remember Billy having a cast on one arm (can't remember which one) and playing the drums with the cast. Back to Top.
Listen To The Dead:
Ticket stub - http://i.imgur.com/tfFyzKK.jpg
Poster - http://i.imgur.com/JvkUnuc.jpg
Playbill - http://nelsonsdavis.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/firstgratefuldeadshow.pdf
Backstage Pass - http://i.imgur.com/Ep0ElIy.jpg
Laminate - http://i.imgur.com/oAG1LiK.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/dDKgTYp.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/TuiXsU8.jpg
Jerry & Donna - http://i.imgur.com/anYvnoE.jpg
Phil, Keith & Mickey - http://i.imgur.com/dp4xV58.jpg
Jerry, Donna & Bobby - http://i.imgur.com/Z0gdQrq.jpg
Lot scene - http://i.imgur.com/71iWdUH.jpg
5/7/70 - Dupont Gymnasium, M.I.T., Cambridge, MA
Five days after the legendary Harpur College show, three days after the tragedy at Kent State and one day after playing the short impromptu set in the rain on the steps of the Student Center at M.I.T., the Dead bring the house down with an incredible 4+ hour show at Dupont Gymnasium. Tragically, a soundboard copy of this show is not in the Dead's vault, leaving us with a tinny/muddy-sounding audience recording that requires very patient ears. If only we had a soundboard, it would be hailed as one of the greatest shows ever with the likes of Harpur, Veneta and Cornell.
The Lovelight from this show is considered one of the best ever due in large part to a glorious sequence of thematic jams that includes a St. Stephen jam > Darkness jam > China Cat jam right before the final reprise which is searing. Clocking in at over 30 minutes, it is the longest Lovelight ever played. I would have featured it today, however, the combination of the length and the poor audio quality make it not an ideal choice for this project. But, I urge you all to check this out at all costs - at least the thematic jams within Lovelight.
That brings me to today's selection. Easy Wind is another HUGE highlight of this show that finds the band firing on all cylinders. Pig leads off the jam with a trademark bluesy harmonica solo before handing it off to Bobby who lays down some tasty rhythmic chords. At about the 5:50 minute mark Jerry steps in, cranks it all the way UP and absolutely WAILS.
His solo is a note-bending, tape-saturating, face-melting tour de force that brings to mind the version of Hard To Handle from 8/6/71. Yeah, it's like THAT. Back to Top.
Listen To The Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1970/5/7-1/easy-wind
Poster - Poster - http://i.imgur.com/ZA1LLDL.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/mhkgvS4.jpg
Pigpen - http://i.imgur.com/OSuTfl8.jpg
Free show on 5/6/70 - http://i.imgur.com/GmzGFpY.jpg
6/24/70 - Capitol Theater, Port Chester, NY
Keep your dial set to legendary audience tapes from 1970. The shows the Dead played at the Capitol Theater in 1970 are an embarrassment of riches foe which no soundboards exist - 3/21, 6/24, 11/6 and 11/8. Among these, the fan favorite seems to be 6/24 for the dreamy Dark Star-Attics-Sugar-Dark Star suite. But, how about the juxtaposition of the powerful St. Stephen that follows? The instrumental crescendo is HUGE - perhaps the best ever. The audience must have been melted into puddles on the floor. Here is a great write-up from the Deadlistening blog:
Coming out of the second verse Dark Star, the song takes its well-documented (Live Dead 1969) transition into St. Stephen. The crowd feels it coming - an ecstatic fan really feels it too and can be heard having his face stolen at about the 2:58 minute mark: "YEAH, YEAH, OH NO!" The band delivers what is clearly the biggest hit tune for the East Coast fans at the time. Everyone knows this song, and loves that they are getting to hear it. The band manages to match, or outdo the LP version, and the powerful post "One man gather's what another man spills" section explodes, much like Pigpen's gunshot that leads it off. This section of the song goes beyond description. It's all about the unstoppable energy here. There are no solos. It's this onslaught of musical intensity. It sends shivers up and down my spine every time I hear it; a smile involuntarily paints itself on my face.
Read more here: http://www.deadlistening.com/2008/04/1970-june-24-capitol-theatre.html#ixzz3JHovCEWx
Nick Paumgarten also wrote about this St. Stephen in his article that lists his favorite Grateful Dead tapes, titled "Nick's Picks" which appeared in The New Yorker on11/29/12:
The band sounds ferocious, and the audience is riled. The "Dark Star" suite has its gentle moments, but the way they launch into "St. Stephen," with the theatre crowd going bananas and what sounds like a gun being shot, give an eighties Deadhead like me a taste of a more feral time, both onstage and off. Back to Top.
Read more here: http://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/nicks-picks
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/pOrnquc.jpg
Marquee - http://i.imgur.com/qN2TjIx.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/RpRtqEN.jpg
Stealie - http://i.imgur.com/gHcs5O4.jpg
NFA > Black Peter > NFA > Around & Around
10/6/77 - Activity Center, ASU, Tempe, AZ
Mickey & Billy start pounding the NFA beat at a very fast tempo - it's one of the fastest I've heard them do since the 1971-72 era. The band wastes no time and launches right in. Listen to how the music EXPLODES after they sing the second verse, "My love is bigger than a Cadillac." This version escapes the stratosphere of normal NFA's with crushing rhythm and guitar shredding. It's frenzied and relentless. Then something unique happens at about the 6:18 minute mark - Garcia leads the band into a very brief Mind Left Body jam. Whoa! The music takes on a darker, more menacing tone after this. The creativity is flowing. At 11:50 the band slows things down and slides into Black Peter which was rarely played at the time. This was only the second time since 10/19/74. Surprisingly, the band returns to NFA with a clever chord change. The intensity builds to a frenzy again for a rare post-1972 NFA reprise complete with vocal squeals courtesy of Bobby and Donna - it works. Incredibly, they stop and start Around & Around. This goes quickly into overdrive with Donna wailing - it works. They speed up even more - it works! It goes nuts and builds to a crescendo. It works! Classic Dead in fall of '77 Back to Top.
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1977/10/6
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/w5a2AYk.jpg
CD Jewel Case Art - http://i.imgur.com/ubjAn6S.jpg
Donna - http://i.imgur.com/z3T26qU.jpg
Jerry, Donna, Bobby - http://i.imgur.com/lXGIeYO.jpg
NFA Logo - http://i.imgur.com/urM4u04.jpg
Banter > Golden Road > New Potato Caboose
5/5/67 - Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco, CA
It's the Summer of Love at the Fillmore and the Dead deliver a raw energy performance of acid-rock that drips with psychedelia. Would you expect anything less? After some very weird acid-test sounding banter the band launches into the rarely played Gold Road (to Unlimited Devotion) - the perfect song to usher in the Summer of Love. It's a high-paced version with spirited vocals and swirling organ. This leads into a face melting New Potato Caboose. As one reviewer wrote, there are an infinite number of impossibly great moments in this piece but the last 8 minutes fall under the definition of More Than Human. Back to Top.
Youtube - New Potato Caboose: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zcE0QddN-5M
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1967/5/5-2
Poster - http://i.imgur.com/9jJPLt8.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/ZgOMuS3.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/aCm9LQN.jpg
The Wheel > Jam
10/1/76 - Cobo Arena, Detroit, MI
An exquisite jam out of The Wheel led by Keith and Jerry. It's both hypnotic and picturesque at the same time. At one point, you can hear Bobby suggest the return to Dancin' but Jerry shuts that disco shit down and takes it even deeper. Here is a great review from LMA:
A tornado of sound with notes spinning around inside the revolving wind of the conical tunnel. Jerry and Keith are just playing some crazy repetitious themes which neither realizes is connected until they twist together like a double helix strand of DNA being pulled apart from the center and then, after twisting in space, reunites with its counterpart to reform the whole cord. Back to Top.
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1976/10/3-2/the-wheel
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/Rsn50lM.jpg
Cobo Arena (famous for something else too) - http://i.imgur.com/mJWRH1w.jpg
Comes A Time
5/1/77 - The Palladium, New York, NY
Comes A Time was only performed 5 times in 1977 - all in the month of May - and each one is gorgeous. The debate will never end about which is best - 5/9, 5/21 or even 5/4 - but it would be an enormous mistake to overlook 5/1. This one is all about the outro jam. Garcia gets some lovely watery tones from his guitar while Keith's ever-so-delicate piano accompaniment sounds like droplets of water. But what sets this apart from the others is the unique thematic Type II territory that is explored in the last few minutes. Unlike the other versions which maintain the song structure throughout the ending jam, this version floats off into a wholly different direction much the way the sublime version from 7/17/76does. Whereas that jam is joyful and uplifting, the jam here is a slow waltz that is wistful, sullen and heartbreakingly sad. It's moments like these that make you realize just how powerful the Dead's ballads can be. Back to Top.
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1977/5/1-1/comes-a-time
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/exgnNhV.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/EG6j0PK.jpg
Band - http://i.imgur.com/Ou5YxGb.jpg
Church of Garcia - http://i.imgur.com/8FQ5AY2.jpg
Playin' Reprise > Uncle John's Band Reprise > Morning Dew
10/12/84 - Augusta Civic Center, Augusta, ME
Even the lobsters were tripping tonight
-dr. flashback, attendee at 10/12/84
From what is considered one of the best shows of 1984, this post-Space sequence is a nod to the much loved Playin' Palindrome that was performed only a handful of times from November 1973 to March 1974. Let's be honest, 1984 Dead is a far cry from that era of brilliance but something magical was definitely in the air at the 8,000 seat Civic Center on that cool Friday evening in a small, rural town in upstate Maine.
It was a very dark period for Jerry who was looking pretty rough. He was grossly overweight and greasy and his once silky voice had deteriorated significantly (compare his vocals here to yesterday's selection - Comes A Time from 5/1/77). This titanic version of Morning Dew - considered among the best of the 80's - embodies the struggle Jerry had with his demons. It's very personal...almost too personal. Reviews from people who were in attendance speak about the power of this Dew - a lone, white spotlight shining down on Jerry's weathered body. It was just him pouring out his soul. Sensing the heavy emotion, the band digs deep for their fragile leader. Phil turns his bass way up dropping deep, heavy bombs and Brent assaults his B-3 organ while the band collectively reaches an enormous climax that is cathartic on so many levels. Listen to the crowd erupt into thunderous applause after Jerry belts out the final, "Guess it doesn't matter anyway." It's chilling. The audience knew they had witnessed one for the record books.
Here is a review from LMA:
After the band had left the stage, the lights came up and Vivaldi lofted out over the auditorium. Everyone in the audience looked around at each other with "that" look in their eyes. We hugged strangers in celebration knowing we had been witness to the miracle that is the Grateful Dead when they make magic.
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1984/10/12-3
Venue (outside): http://i.imgur.com/LvGFOO4.jpg
Venue (inside-1): http://i.imgur.com/wpGewjS.jpg
Venue (inside-2): http://i.imgur.com/1tobQGL.jpg
Ticket Stub from GDP: http://i.imgur.com/MP8VvOt.jpg
Ticket Stub: http://i.imgur.com/q3ZoCt2.jpg
Backstage pass: http://i.imgur.com/k7vys0z.jpg
11/2/85 - Richmond Coliseum, Richmond, VA
The Richmond shows were definitely a highlight of the Fall '85 tour and perhaps the entire year. The first night is the only show from 1985 that has been officially released (Dick's Picks, Vol. 21) but the next night is just as worthy. Here is a great Iko Iko that kicked off the second set. Garcia really gets into at the end with a huge finale. Back to Top.
Youtube (set 2): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMsl9zCj1EQ
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1985/11/2-3/iko-iko
Iko Iko - http://i.imgur.com/SMoiSnI.jpg
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/Txb3XeP.jpg
Backstage Pass - http://i.imgur.com/jLb0WEE.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/WiqkaBn.jpg
Concert footage from Flickr - https://www.flickr.com/photos/unkljohn/5222203451/
Dick's Picks, Vol. 21 - http://i.imgur.com/4OZeNlk.jpg
10/26/89 – Miami Arena, Miami, FL
Today’s selection is from 10/26/89 which contains some of the darkest music the band has ever played. Here is what The Deadhead’s Taping Compendium has to say:
They begin set 2 with Estimated Prophet, the first time it opened the set since 1977. Certainly an unusual choice that nobody expected. Why open with it? Bobby becomes the Masonesque "messiah" yearning for his Jerusalem, the West Coast. Healy adds chilling delay and effects to Bobby's voice. The middle jam surges forward and soars upward as the crowd flies with the music. But it is right back down to the gutter as Bobby snivels and whimpers his way into a deranged quiet jam. Billy and Mickey keep the rhythm locked tight at first, but as the jam strays from F-sharp minor, they slowly drop the 7/4 time and begin to wander free. But the landscape is dark and ominous. How many of these "messiahs" are out there on the street? For a moment Jerry flirts with Emaj7, almost as if Eyes if next, which would have altered the entire course of the show. But he immediately drops it and returns to "Space."
This of course is the set up for what is considered the most evil modern-day Dark Star. Back to Top.
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1989/10/26/estimated-prophet
Ticket Stub GDTS - http://i.imgur.com/a6GhN5F.jpg
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/C25kyuA.jpg
Backstage Pass - http://i.imgur.com/CP3s0ES.jpg
Fall ’89 Laminate - http://i.imgur.com/xZ7NLxp.jpg
1989 Stage Shot - http://i.imgur.com/Nkybb5K.jpg
Bobby - http://i.imgur.com/rSayR5k.jpg
Bobby alt shot - http://i.imgur.com/zTovKIZ.jpg
Standing on the Moon
8/21/93 - Autzen Stadium, U. of Oregon, Eugene, OR
The ending jam and vocal reprise from this version of Standing on the Moon ranks as one of the very best moments of 90's Dead. Jerry takes the crowd to the precipice of cosmic euphoria - bending his knees, shredding his guitar and pushing his vocals to the limit. BE WITH YOU. The sheer power is stunning. I get chills every time I listen to it.
Here is an account of that moment by a fan who was in attendance that is published inThe Deadhead Taper's Compendium, Vol. 3:
I remember watching this in total awe, swaying back and forth in the late afternoon sun with 50,000 other very high, sun-kissed heads, knowing in my heart of hearts that this was church for us. Off in the stage-right corner of the field, fifty dancer moshed in slow motion - a surreal vision to witness. Altogether, a stunningly spiritual moment that does not manage to come through on tape. Back to Top.
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1993/8/21/standing-on-the-moon
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/xur0CT5.jpg
Backstage Pass - http://i.imgur.com/vOTFj33.jpg
VIP Pass - http://i.imgur.com/qmuEUsE.jpg
Other - http://i.imgur.com/9cPO4VR.jpg
Poster - http://i.imgur.com/ByI71gr.gif
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/poCI7Yr.jpg
SOTM - http://i.imgur.com/wNqcZh7.jpg
Concert 1 - http://i.imgur.com/umZ4jL1.jpg
Concert 2 - http://i.imgur.com/1Jmn3H2.jpg
Concert 3 - http://i.imgur.com/5czb07P.jpg
Here Comes Sunshine
2/23/74 - Winterland Arena, San Francisco, CA
A melty, groove-a-licious Here Comes Sunshine to celebrate the recently announced next edition of Dave's Pick - Vol. 13, Winterland 2/24/74 - which will be released in early 2015. Fingers crossed that Dave included this as filler.
This version carries some historical significance - it is the only time it was played in 1974 and it is the final version until it returned in 1992 with a bad makeover, sounding like a mere shell of its former self. It is puzzling why the band would shelve such a jam-heavy song that was introduced into the repertoire only a year earlier when it was reaching new heights with each performance. In fact the performance just prior to this one is widely considered to be the "go to" version and is the version personally chosen by the great Dick Latvala to be included in the first volume of the Dick's Picks series (i.e., 12/19/73 Tampa). However, this "final" performance gives Tampa a serious run for its money. Some argue that the band perfected it on this evening which necessitated its "retirement." Either way, we can only dream about what they would have done with this song in 1974.
Here is a great essay that lists and reviews the "Top 10" versions of Here Comes Sunshine including this one (Ranked #2): http://deadessays.blogspot.com/2011/05/here-comes-sunshine-guest-post.html
Back to Top.
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1974/2/23-2/here-comes-sunshine
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/SBIjgTN.jpg
Winterland Marquee - http://i.imgur.com/EOHZNRu.jpg
HC Sunshine - http://i.imgur.com/2GaTDB1.jpg
HC Sunshine - http://i.imgur.com/uZX8BwG.jpg
HC Sunshine Single - http://i.imgur.com/KR5QMXl.jpg
12/16/78 – Nashville Memorial Auditorium, Nashville, TN
1940 Xmas Eve. A downright gritty version of Stagger Lee. Check out the finale on this one. Oh my!
Here are some memories posted on LMA by fans who attended. Sounds like the place was pretty electric that evening:
A few things I remember: seeing reams of unsold tickets at the ticket window, so it wasn't anywhere close to being a full house (maybe 5,000 out of 8-9,000?), watching Donna Jean sit down on a folding chair on the back of the stage when she wasn't singing, seeing a hippie chick holding up a single rose in the middle of the crowd. And even though I'm pretty sure they were done with the Wall of Sound by then, I remember that the speakers were piled up higher than any other band I'd seen up 'til then.
This was only my 3rd show and WOW, I loved it. I also remember being well dosed for the show.
The crowd was very small (~3000) since Ted Nugent, who was a MUCH bigger draw in Nashville at the time, had just played the night before. The Dead seemed to sense that the crowd was mostly hardcore fans and played accordingly. Back to Top.
YouTube (Stagger Lee): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCbv6T5PZkM
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1978/12/16/stagger-lee
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/d2wW3wz.jpg
Backstage Pass - http://i.imgur.com/alWTRFG.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/HYXDdir.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/yZRyYyq.png
Stagger Lee - http://i.imgur.com/AKiS1c6.jpg
Lazy Lighting > Supplication
2/17/79 – Oakland Coliseum Arena, Oakland, CA
Keith and Donna’s last show is a blowout and this version of Lazy Lightning > Supplication is blistering. Listen to how fast Garcia’s fingers fly during the instrumental section of Supplication.
Yes, a very weird show. A weird night. Halfway through the first set I watched my friend Jeff rip off several strips of Dragon blotter, slurpin' 'em up like Chinese noodles. By the end of that same set Eddy was screamin' "Forget the eighties! Forget the eighties, we're headed straight for the nineties!"
The band came on (with lights on) and they seemed quite tweaked, presumably on blow and blotter. I had seen the sublime and beautiful 12/30/78 UCLA show just 6 weeks earlier, but this was a completely different animal; much more akin to some of those frantic/caustic shows with the Brent band years later. You can really hear it on Jerry's. The whole place was FRYING and Jerry was singing through clenched teeth earning him the nickname in my mind that evening of Colonel Skillet. Back to Top.
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1979/2/17-1
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/QfZsv72.jpg
Poster - http://i.imgur.com/yiJOwFk.jpg
Keith & Billy - http://i.imgur.com/CUwXYkD.jpg
Donna - http://i.imgur.com/CbYq1kC.jpg
Band - http://i.imgur.com/7BVKAat.jpg
Jerry getting it done - http://i.imgur.com/lngRISa.jpg
10/17/83 – Olympic Center, Lake Placid, NY
Long before Phish spelled Fuck Your Face with their setlist in Commerce City on 8/31/10, the Dead were routinely spelling LSD at the end of their first sets with Lost > Saint > Deal and Lazy > Supplication > Deal. In the same spirit I have re-created the same mischief over two days by combining Lazy Lighting > Supplication from yesterday with Deal today.
Appropriately enough, today’s Deal is from the legendary Lake Placid show which Deadhead’s were quick to rename, “Lake Acid.” Only three years after the Miracle on Ice and days after the St. Stephen’s of MSG and Hartford the Dead easily earn the gold medal for the best first set of 1983 with versions of Sugaree, Bird Song and Deal, all of which could be in the conversation for “best ever.” The band lays waste to the set-closing Deal. It’s one of the longest versions ever and Garcia’s guitar work is absolutely blistering with monster peaks throughout. A lot of minds were melted that evening.
Fan Memories from LMA:
The Olympic Arena has a promenade between the lower and upper sections that is a continuous circle. During The Wheel all the heads linked arms until the entire level was connected, one circle going one way, the other going the other. It was unreal, surreal --- This show was one in which the gods were smiling and they all came out on a brisk autumn evening to see their favorite band and its followers waltz through the heavens. This show is why we love Jerry as much as we do.
I grew up in Lake Placid (pop. about 5000) and on 10/17/83 The Dead completely took over the town!
My first Grateful Dead show,also happened to be my first acid trip. A fabulous evening. I remember the ring of dancing freaks around the entire balcony level of the venue...very cool... Back to Top.
Listen to the Dead:
Garcia FYF - http://ecmartin003.imgur.com/all/
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/POXGG6f.jpg
Backstage Pass - http://i.imgur.com/gtuLnig.jpg
Poster - http://i.imgur.com/EHR0M60.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/KCiN3Tw.jpg
Miracle on Ice - http://i.imgur.com/3habxso.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/f5WlXn9.jpg
2/15/73 - Dan Country Coliseum, Madison, WI
This show was an essential tape that was part of any serious fan's collection before there were Betty Board's, before there was LMA and before there was digital music. The Dark Star is great.
Here is a very comprehensive essay of the show:
Here is an excellent review of the Dark Star, the featured song for today, by the very prolific clementinescaboose as posted on LMA:
I can't think of (a Dark Star) with a more compelling pre-verse segment than the hyper-drive jazz jam contained in this one; the first four minutes are just incredible! They are locked in a way I have rarely heard elsewhere. Around the five minute mark, things quiet down for a bit into some haunting and introspective space but pick up again around 9 minutes. Garcia driving another beautiful, jazzy jam and teasing the Dark Star theme for a while before they come back to earth. Following the verse, Phil takes a long, great bass solo (one of just many to come in 73), and during the transition into Eyes of the World Garcia joins in - if you've never heard this before, get ready. The two of them briefly and brilliantly intertwine for a stunningly melodic passage that while painfully ephemeral, may just be the most beautiful in the band's history. Back to Top.
Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OcZmvinWc24
Part 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Szwrjk8-wyI
Entire show: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6PAhw0P3CNA
Enjoy your Dark Star - http://i.imgur.com/So2pjyx.png
Ticket Stub - http://i.imgur.com/dqxXpWs.jpg
Poster - http://i.imgur.com/nXNdh30.jpg
Cassette J-Card - http://i.imgur.com/lJ28CAn.jpg
CD Jewel Case Artwork - http://i.imgur.com/SAB8cxE.jpg
Richard Zimmerman's Concert Photos - http://richzimmermann.com/tag/Dane-County-Coliseum
The Other One > Me & Bobby McGee > The Other One
9/28/72 - Stanley Theatre, Jersey City, NJ
A brain-melter of an Other One for you today to cleanse your palette after yesterday's introspective Dark Star. It's pretty incredible to think that the Dead followed the same dream-like formula in 1972, alternating Dark Star and The Other One each show as their jamming centerpiece. This version of The Other One from 9/28/72 is just as ceremonious as the Dark Star from the previous evening and would make a nice companion to Dick's Picks, Vol. 11. Hint, hint!
Today's write-up, authored by Robert E. Goetz, is taken from The Deadhead's Taping Compendium, Vol. 1 (1965-74)
The previous evening's performance was surreal and perhaps one of their best of all time. The band faced a formidable task in attempting to create the same magic on September 28, 1972, but indeed rose to the occasion. In particular, Lesh stands out among the quintet, providing a powerful presence through each song and jam.
The jam out of He's Gone leads to a bass solo with Kreutzmann which concludes with a massive thunder roll, providing the cue for the band to return. After some solid Other One jams, the band begins to drift to a deeper and slower state under Garcia's direction. An interesting contrast developed here because Lesh just doesn't quit the muscular tone created in his bass solo. The result is a deep and notable Other One jam. Garcia and Lesh seem to be teasing each other and yet each is having his own way. Jerry changes the pace again to a nonthreatenening outer space tone. The jam get way out there reaching a point where just Garcia is plucking harmonics and Lesh is dropping bombs. This ultimately builds from the depths to a massive power jam into the first verse.
After the verse Garcia and Lesh do become threatening: in fact they get downright evil. The jam molds into a sick and demented atonal jam. Garcia creates such terrifying and weird sounds with Lesh that it sounds as though they have reached the seventy-second dimension. This builds into a massive and devastating "Tiger." In its aftermath it sounds as though the Stanley Theatre was collapsing from the rafters. The band wallows in it for a moment before Weir brightens the mood by entering Me & Bobby McGee. This version is incredible. The vocals are supreme and Garcia's solo sounds like a calming breeze deep in the Louisiana bayou. Lesh concludes the tune with a massive bomb, and the band immediately returns to another powerful Other One jam.
The concerts of September 27 and 28, 1972 reached some legendary moments. The versions of Dark Star and The Other One performed are some of their very best ever. Back to Top.
There is also an excellent review of this version of The Other One in the deadlistening blog:
YouTube (He's Gone thru Wharf Rat): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-rtqoaNBT1I
Listen to the Dead: : http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1972/9/28-6
Concert Poster - http://i.imgur.com/YTvAOQR.jpg
CD Jewel Case Art - http://i.imgur.com/qjPM8aO.jpg
Venue (Outside) - http://i.imgur.com/4qKtrIU.jpg
Venue (Inside theater) - http://i.imgur.com/Bw9w32Y.jpg
Venue (Inside lobby) - http://i.imgur.com/1Su9Dv9.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/HKLhJos.jpg
Jerry - http://i.imgur.com/VSJD4Tr.jpg
Cryptical Reprise > Death Don't Have No Mercy
2/22/69 - Dream Bowl, Vallejo, CA
Psychedelic mayhem from the Live Dead era in 1969. Jerry takes the band into some mystical territory initially but when he screams the final HE HAD TO DIE verse the band rockets into the cosmos. Taking no prisoners, they build it to an astonishingly ferocious climax. It's one of the best Cryptical's ever.
Things get dark and smoky as the band drifts into Death Don't Have No Mercy. I wonder if Jerry even realized that the last and first words he sang in each of the respective songs went like this: "You know he had to die" > "You know death don't have no mercy in this land." This is a stand-out performance - oozing with passion and soul. Check out the over-the-top finale. Sadly, there is a pretty bad cut in the master reel. But, this should not deter you because it is otherwise one of the finest versions you'll ever hear. Back to Top.
Darryl Norsen's Aquarium Drunkard Blog:http://www.aquariumdrunkard.com/2014/11/03/dead-notes-9-22269-vallejo-ca/
Nick's Picks - The New Yorker Magazine: http://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/nicks-picks
Dream Bowl Venue Info: http://rockprosopography101.blogspot.com/2010/03/dream-bowl-vallejo-ca-february-april.html
Listen To The Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1969/2/22-1
Poster - http://i.imgur.com/NhU2S04.jpg
Venue (?) - http://i.imgur.com/Kjj0Ey8.jpg
CD Jewel Case Art - http://i.imgur.com/vhpXiFM.jpg
Dead Notes Artwork - http://i.imgur.com/Jcs9q35.jpg
Band 1969 - http://i.imgur.com/SyGZJm7.jpg
The Eleven > Caution (Do Not Stop On The Tracks) > Feedback
10/20/68 - Greek Theatre, Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA
The Dark Star from this show was featured in the 2012 edition of the Official 30 Days of Dead. You can't ever go wrong with Dark Star but the real action here occurs in the wild finale - The Eleven > Caution. This is primal Dead at its very best - perhaps one of their finest moments in 1968.
During a warp-speed version of The Eleven, Garcia becomes mesmerized with a 3-note repetition. Jerry, slow down bro, you're going to lose your mind! Towards the ending Phil begins to pound the quick, staccato notes of the Caution theme - the Dead's take on psychedelic back-country rock. The drummers lay it down and things begin to sound like a nearly out-of-control train speeding down the tracks. Garcia jumps all over it and Armageddon ensues. The seamless transition is one for the ages! Pigpen wisely keeps the verse and "all of need" call-and-response section brief so that the band can get back into the thick of it again. Incredibly, they go even faster. The breakneck pace is exhilarating. Holy crap do they have their mojo! This kind of explosive intensity can't be sustained forever so Garcia slows down in an attempt to bring it to an end but Phil is not having it. The thumping bass relentlessly persists and the onslaught continues. Eventually, the band has mercy on its fans and provides the calm they so desperately now need with some introspective Feedback. Ahhhhhh! Back to Top.
Absolutely annihilating! Were there any survivors?
Listen To The Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1968/10/20
Handbill - http://i.imgur.com/Kw8I98i.jpg
Band - http://i.imgur.com/udmmjGS.jpg
Band - http://i.imgur.com/YqCJkV5.jpg
Venue - http://i.imgur.com/Zl8NUq1.jpg
I Peaked at the Greek - http://i.imgur.com/vPAdP4K.jpg
December 31 - New Year's Eve
9/20/70 - Fillmore East, New York, NY
From the best acoustic set the Dead ever played, this version of Ripple, complete with mandolin, is simply album-perfect. The song - written in haiku format - invokes themes relevant to personal reflection in the new year like choosing your own path in life and wishing you a "full cup" (i.e., happiness).
Thanks for following the 31 Days of Dead. I hope you enjoyed this year's edition. It has been a lot of fun putting this compilation together. Special thanks to Brian Levine for providing his fantastic artwork. I'll zip all of the files for download soon. Meanwhile, it's time for me to pop the cork of the champagne bottle and wish you all a Happy New Year! Back to Top.
YouTube (entire show/Ripple begins at the 23:35 minute mark):https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-HVwGmjuIDc
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1970/9/20/ripple
1970 Acoustic set - http://i.imgur.com/yYAIH5N.jpg
Fillmore East Marquee - http://i.imgur.com/5KSaA3D.jpg
Ripple - http://i.imgur.com/S61SklF.jpg
NYE Miracle Ticket - http://i.imgur.com/tiPMNs1.jpg
2015 BONUS TRACK
Dark Star > The Main Ten > Dancin, NFA > GDTRFB > NFA > Good Lovin'
11/8/70 - Capitol Theater, Port Chester, NY
New Year's Eve with the Grateful Dead usually meant three sets, so in that same tradition comes this bonus track from the legendary 11/8/70. It ranks among the best shows the Dead ever performed without the fame that Cornell or Veneta enjoy because no soundboard exists.
This Dark Star is a joy to behold. The all-too-brief pre-verse section clocks in at only 6 minutes but what is there is as beautiful, delicate, graceful and melodic as anything the band has ever played. Following the verse, the band attempts to get weird with dissonant feedback and clanging percussion but the tension is briefly interrupted by a fan with a duck whistle. Some laughter naturally follows, so in an effort to set things back on course Bobby steps to the microphone and says, "C'mon, this is serious." As the band begins again, another fan whose mellow has clearly been harshed by this turn of events screams, "Come on!!!" Now there is silence. The planets are properly aligned and the vast dark universe is back upon us. Feedback lasts for almost as long as the pre-verse jam.
Out of Feedback the band drifts into a very tribal-sounding version of The Main Ten, the rare instrumental song that begat Playin' In The Band. It is the perfect follow-up to the nearly 8-minutes of twisted noise that preceded it. After every possible nuance of The Main Ten has been explored the band crafts a loose, melodic jam that is in no hurry to go anywhere. It has remnants of the Dark Star that was played earlier and I suppose the band could have returned to it but opted instead to start picking things up a bit. After a drum-fill intro the band breaks into Dancin' In The Streets. This is not the raging version most are familiar with from Harpur College. That would have been much too jarring coming from the transcendental jam that preceded it. This Dancin' is slower and more deliberate yet loses nothing. As with most versions from 1970, the band inserts the joyful Tighten Up thematic jam. Can it get any better than this> It's the Grateful Dead in 1970 so of course it can! The NFA > GDTRFB > NFA > Good Lovin' is a searing finale to an epic show. Back to Top.
YouTube (The Main Ten): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xMnozWYVdY
Listen to the Dead: http://relisten.net/grateful-dead/1970/11/8
Capitol Theater Marquee - http://i.imgur.com/3yEmyq6.jpg