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Best of Dancing In The Street

STANDARD DISCLAIMER:


The Best Versions Project differs from the lists in the Grateful Dead Taper's Compendium in what Ribot_for_President calls good taste and common sense. This project isn't necessarily definitive, and its not an invitation to debate. Its a list of solid versions that you all ought to hear. For more information about the processes used to create these lists, please check the, About the Projects section on the home page.

And now...

The Top 10 Versions of Dancing In The Street:

4/12/70 - Fillmore West, San Francisco, CA - STREAM SBD

5/2/70 - Harpur College, S.U.N.Y, Binghamton, NY
- STREAM DICK'S PICK #8 (SPOTIFY)

5/6/70 - Kresge Plaza, M.I.T, Cambridge, MA - STREAM SBD

5/8/77 - Barton Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY - STREAM SBD

5/19/77 - Fox Theatre, Atlanta, GA - STREAM SBD

10/11/77 - Lloyd Noble Center, U. of Oklahoma, Norman, OK - STREAM SBD


1/7/78 - Golden Hall, Community Concourse, San Diego, CA - STREAM SBD

5/9/78 - Onondaga County War Memorial, Syracuse, NY - STREAM AUD

1/12/79 - The Spectrum, Philadelphia, PA - STREAM AUD


10/27/79 - Cape Cod Coliseum, South Yarmouth, MA - STREAM SBD


Honorable Mention:

2/14/70 - Fillmore East, New York, NY - STREAM SBD

9/18/70 - Fillmore East, New York, NY - STREAM SBD

5/4/77 - The Palladium, New York, NY - STREAM SBD

10/20/78 - Winterland Arena, San Francisco, CA - STREAM SBD

11/30/79 - Stanley Theatre, Pittsburgh, PA - STREAM SBD


Historically Significant:

7/3/66 - Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco, CA (First) - STREAM SBD

12/31/71 - Winterland Arena, San Francisco, CA (Last old arrangement until '84) - STREAM SBD

6/3/76 - Paramount Theater, Portland, OR (Post-Retirement Bustout) - STREAM SBD

5/11/78 - Springfield Civic Center Arena, Springfield, MA (Mescaline show) - STREAM SBD; AUD; MTX

6/24/84 - Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saratoga, NY - STREAM AUD

4/6/87 - Meadowlands Arena, East Rutherford, NJ (Last) - STREAM SBD

Special Addendum regarding Dancing in 1976:

In the roundness that the Dead touring career took, many songs left, returned, sometimes as special occassions, sometimes because they felt like rocking it again, and other times, completely re-worked and deployed as nothing less than a completely new song. Dancing In The Streets is one of these of the latter type. As a popular tune of the day, originally released by Martha and The Vandellas, it went through two distinct personas in their early career. First as a straight-forward, quick-paced cover, then as an exploratory smoother piece, after which it was shelved for 5 years. Really, it was more like 6 years as they only played it a few times between 12/23/70 and 6/3/76. When it came back, they had completely re-arranged the song and the approach to playing it. However, this new arrangement was fraught with perils for a live act, as the time signatures and interlacing instrument's responsibilities made it very diffiicult to move through without mistakes or mis-cues. Throughout 1976, the band battled the rust from the year-and-a-half break and simultaneously re-working the band due to the return of second drummer Mickey Hart. Being that the drumming is the most essential element to keeping their new version from falling apart, the song went through a long trial stage, where each night saw varying (sometimes wildly varying) tempos. In late 1976 the band had worked it up sufficiently and decided to try inserting it as the base or middle section of one of their long multi song sequence jams. During this period, several nights saw fantastic collaboration take place and possibly the last reminents of the Dead improv style of old as they gave way to the new sound that broke through in 1977. 1976 is already the most overlooked year in the Dead's history and Dancing's short time as a sequence song is more than worth diving into. Between 9/23/76 and 10/14/76 there are 8 versions that are this type. In 110+ times played, this is the only period that saw the song take this form. Please listen.

Dancing In The Street

Music and Lyrics: Marvin Gaye, William Stevenson, Ivy Jo Hunter

[Dancing, dancing, dancing in the streets]
[Dancing, dancing, dancing in the streets]

Come alive around the world
Are you ready for a brand new beat
'Cause summer's here and the time is right
For dancing in the street
They're dancing in Chicago (dancing in the street)
Down in New Orleans now (dancing in the street)
In New York City (dancing in the street)

Chorus
All we need is music, sweet music (sweet, sweet music)
And there'll be music everywhere (everywhere)
There'll be laughing, singing and music swinging
And dancing in the street
It doesn't matter what you wear
(Just as) long as you are there
C'mon every guy, grab a girl
Everywhere around the world
And there'll be dancing
Dancing in the street

This is an invitation across the nation
A chance for folks to meet
There'll be swinging, swaying and music playing
And dancing in the street
Philadelphia PA (dancing in the streets)
Baltimore and DC now (dancing in the streets)
Can't forget the Motor City (dancing in the streets)

[chorus]

This is an invitation across the nation
A chance for folks to meet
There'll be laughing, singing, and music swinging
Dancing in the street
Philadelphia PA (dancing in the streets)
Baltimore and DC now (dancing in the streets)
Down in LA every day
Dancing in the streets

Come alive around the world
Are you ready for a brand new beat
'Cause summer's here and the time is right
For dancing in the street
They're dancing in Chicago (dancing in the streets)
Down in New Orleans now (dancing in the streets)
In New York City (dancing in the streets)

[chorus]

Down in LA every day
Dancing in the street
Big long line, get in time
Dancing in the street
Across the ocean blue, [New York too]
Dancing in the street
Yeah all round the world, boys and girls
Dancing in the street