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Best of The Eleven


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 11 Versions of The Eleven:

8/23/68 - Shrine Exhibition Hall, Los Angeles, Ca.- STREAM SBD

10/20/68 - Greek Theatre, U. of California, Berkeley, Ca.- STREAM SBD

2/12/69 - Fillmore East, New York, N.Y.- STREAM SBD

2/21/69 - Dream Bowl, Napa, Ca.- STREAM SBD

3/1/69 - Fillmore West, San Francisco, Ca.- STREAM SBD

4/13/69 - Ballroom, U. of Co., Boulder, Co.- STREAM SBD

4/22/69 - The Ark, Boston, Ma.- STREAM SBD

6/5/69 - Fillmore West, San Francisco, Ca.- STREAM SBD

6/14/69 - Monterey Peninsula College, Monterey, Ca.- STREAM SBD

12/20/69 - Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco, Ca.- STREAM SBD

12/31/69 - Boston Tea Party, Boston, Ma.- STREAM SBD

Honorable Mention:

1/26/69 - Avalon Ballroom, San Francisco, Ca.- Live Dead; STREAM SBD

2/22/69 - Dream Bowl, Napa, Ca.- STREAM SBD

2/27/69 - Fillmore West, San Francisco, Ca.- STREAM SBD

7/12/69 - NY State Pavilion, Flushing Meadow Pk, Queens, N.Y.- STREAM SBD/AUD

Historically Significant:

1/17/68 - Carousel Ballroom, San Francisco, Ca. (First Time Played) - STREAM SBD

10/9/68 - The Matrix, San Francisco, Ca. (Mickey & the Hartbeats mislabeled as 10/10/68) - STREAM SBD

10/30/68 - The Matrix, San Francisco, Ca. (Mickey & the Hartbeats) - STREAM SBD

12/10/68 - Alembic Studios, San Francisco, CA (First with Tom Constanten?) - N/A

4/24/70 - Mammoth Gardens, Denver, Co. (Last Time Played) - STREAM AUD

The Eleven Jams:

09/28/75 (out of Truckin’) - STREAM SBD
12/26/81 (out of drums / pre-Truckin’) - STREAM AUD

Official Releases:

03/16/68 - So Many Roads Box Set
02/23/68 - Dick's Picks Volume 22
02/24/68 - Dick's Picks Volume 22
03/17/68 - Download Series Volume 6
08/24/68 - Two From The Vault
01/23/69 - Download Series Volume 12
01/26/69 - Live Dead
02/11/69 - Fillmore East 2/11/69
02/27/69 - Fillmore West 1969 - The Complete Recordings
02/28/69 - Fillmore West 1969 - The Complete Recordings
03/01/69 - Fillmore West 1969 - The Complete Recordings
03/02/69 - Fillmore West 1969 - The Complete Recordings
04/26/69 - Dick's Picks Volume 26
04/27/69 - Dick's Picks Volume 26
11/08/69 - Dick's Picks Volume 16

Taper's Section

02/22/68 - Dark Star > China Cat Sunflower> The Eleven > Caution
02/05/70 - The Eleven > Caution > Not Fade Away > Cumberland Blues

The Eleven:
Lyrics: Robert Hunter
Music: Phil Lesh

No more time to tell how
This is the season of what
Now is the time of returning
With our thought jewels polished and gleaming

Now is the time past believing
The child has relinquished the reign
Now is the test of the boomerang
Tossed in the night of redeeming

Eight-sided whispering hallelujah hatrack
Seven-faced marble eye transitory dream doll
Six proud walkers on jingle-bell rainbow
Five men writing in fingers of gold
Four men tracking the great white sperm whale
Three girls wait in a foreign dominion
Ride in the whalebelly
Fade away in moonlight
Sink beneath the waters
To the coral sands below
Now is the time of returning

Live, the band skipped some of the words and ran the two parts together. Weir and Lesh sang the short verses, and Garcia interspersed lines from the long verse.

The Annotated The Eleven