Garcia said “We were great for seconds on end.” I was lucky to see Jerry play for about 1,000,000 seconds exactly. Thanks for your 1,000,000 views here . Dave Davis wrote this blog for 500 posts and 5 years from 2015 to 2019. Contact me at twitter @gratefulseconds

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Go West Young Man, Why Dead Heads Flocked to SF

In, the famous Corry342 (see below) makes the observation that "It is my thesis that while the Grateful Dead's music moved (in effect) from West to East, Deadheads tended to move from East to West."

 I agree. So I have decide to show graphically why this may be true.  I am using as an example traveling to my first 11 Grateful Dead concerts in 1976 and 1977 and comparing this to my first 11 concerts in the Bay Area in 1980 and 1981 after moving there in late December 1980.  I have using all the shows I went to in 1976 and 1977 (look to the right if you want to know the exact shows) and the first 11 I show in Oakland and Berkeley starting in December 1980 through December 29,1981 (that's 11 also).  Note I am not counting the Acoustic Show way over in San Francisco or the killer commute to San Mateo for the surprise show, so maybe you can add 30 miles to my totals. :))

Here's what it takes to be 17 and 18 years old without a car and without a driver's license and basically dead broke while attending high school and college to see 11 Dead shows in northeast in 1976 and 1977.

Accounting for trips back home to Lewiston, ME and schools in Andover, MA and Brunswick, ME, google maps says my travels are:

Compare that to the mellow hippie boy moving first to Alcatraz Ave and then 2816 Fulton Street in Berkeley.  here's my path to 11 shows of pretty amazing GD in 1980 and 1981.

These 11 roundtrips took about:

With no car needed, alot on foot up Bancroft to the Greek for 3 of these shows or a few stops on BART over to Lake Merritt Station for the other 8.  I think they should rename that place Terrapin Station, it always looked a little trippy to me (like this)
here how it looked to most deadheads back in the 1980s

Thursday, February 24, 2022

The Brief History of Dark Star>Morning Dew

Originally published on August 26, 2016 at 521pm

At the very height of the Grateful Dead, between 1972 and 1974, the band performed the magical medley of Dark Star>Morning Dew one dozen times. You can hear all of them by clicking above.

This combination is the very pinnacle of the Grateful Dead experience. And I believe it's the very essence of the Grateful Dead, the wild space of the greatest song ever written by the band moving beautifully into a pace-slowing cover song that the Dead made their own, run at the creation of the group.  It's funny, if you check the Dick Lavata clips below, he basically calls every version of Dark Star>Morning Dew, "the greatest version ever".   Some goodies are here

1972 Versions, 7 of 12

05-18-1972  Munich        Dark Star [26:28] > Morning Dew [11:12]   Europe 72 Complete
05-23-1972  London        Dark Star [31:12] > Morning Dew [11:17]   Europe 72 Complete
08-24-1972  Berkeley      Dark Star [27:14] > Morning Dew [13:00]   The Perfect Show
09-21-1972  Philly           Dark Star [37:06] > Morning Dew [11:05]   Dick's Picks 35
10-18-1972  St Louis       Playing In The Band [15:50] > Drums [2:45] > Dark Star [28:25] >                                                        Morning Dew [11:07] > Playing In The Band [5:13]    1st Playing Sandwich
11-13-1972  KansasCity  Dark Star [31:19] > Morning Dew [11:09]  Philo Stomp Dick's GEMS
12-15-1972  Long Beach Truckin' [11:37]> Dark Star [21:24]> Morning Dew [12:39]

The 'Dark Stars" from 8/21 and 8/24 are enormous. I need to
re-listen to the 8/22 show, but it seems to me that the show from 8/24
might be the winner here.

 Now to the really exceptional material. First up is
9/21/72- Philadelphia Spectrum.  This show is one of my favorite shows
ever. This version of "Dark Star->Morning Dew" might be the best one!
(there is a jam segment that is very unique and thrilling, and one that I
don't really think that I have ever heard before.)

The next most exciting show, is the middle night of the run of three at
the fabulous Fox Theater, in St. Louis, Mo. , October 18, 1972. It took me
awhile to hear this show correctly, but now it is a clear example of one
of the very best, with a couple of unusual and unique treats within the
"jam" segment before "Morning Dew".

Long Beach (12/15) was
another matter. Although I don't think of it in the same class as the
shows at the end of November, it does contain some excellent playing in
the 2nd set jam that is highlighted by a long "jam" section that follows
"Truckin", which contains some improvisational jamming that is especially
unique, and then comes "Dark Star"! Sounds great, right?  Unfortunately
the only part that one notices as "Dark Star"  are the lyrics. As soon as
the words are over, the playing resumes in the unique style that preceeded
"Dark Star". This very interesting part continues for many minutes before
the chords of "Morning Dew" become apparent. 

1973, The Duo

09-11-1973  Williamsburg Dark Star [22:09] > Morning Dew [12:41]
10-19-1973  OklahomaCity Dark Star [27:04] > Mind Left Body Jam > Morning Dew [8:12]

The 9/11/73-Williamsburg, Va. show is another favorite of
mine. Well actually it isn't a favorite in the sense of the whole
show, but it certainly has one of the finest examples of the famous
medley "Dark Star->Morning Dew". (which, BTW, I find the
9/10/74- Alexandra Palace to be one of the highest of the high

I guess we can say with confidence that things take on new
meanings on 10/19/73 in Oklahoma. This could easily have been
the first of the DP series, except for the absolute awesomeness of
"Here Comes Sunshine" on 12/19 /73. This has to be yet another
example of the "top version ever", of "Dark Star->Morning
Dew"!!! (and the jam within this incredible medley, of course!)
There is another excellent version of "Eyes of the World" that
goes into "Stella Blue" as the first encore!

1974, The Trio

02-24-1974  SF                  Dark Star [28:57] > Morning Dew [13:35]
09-10-1974  London          Dark Star [30:53] > Morning Dew [12:37]   Dick's Picks 7
10-18-1974  SF                  Seastones [24:38] > Jam [17:40] > Dark Star [17:37] > Morning Dew    

I was never too thrilled by the opening 3 shows at Winterland. Clearly 
the 2/24/74 night is the one to get and give a good listen.

We all know how I felt about the shows at the Alexandra Palace in 
London (9/9->11). (see 1973)

Out of the 5 shows that closed the year at Winterland, I feel that 
the middle 3 are worthy of attention. I guess that 10/18 might get the 
nod over-all, but since these are multi-track recordings, I don't have a 
whole lot of effect on whether these are released or not.

With Filler

03-16-1973  Nassau          Dark Star [26:30] > Truckin' [8:26] > Morning Dew [11:33]
08-01-1973  Jersey City    Dark Star [25:34] > El Paso [4:12] > Eyes Of The World [17:27] >                                                        Morning Dew [13:29]

08-17-1991 Shoreline        25 Years ago this month Smokestake>He's Gone>Drums>Space>70
                                            seconds of a Dark Star Jam>Morning Dew>One More Saturday Night

In Reverse :)
12-31-81      Oakland          > Space [7:40] > The Other One [11:09] > Not Fade Away [7:28] >                                                       GDTRFB [7:21] > Morning Dew [10:44];  Dark Star [15:16] > Bertha                                                   [6:32] > Good Lovin' [10:03]

timings from

In my era of the Dead, they once played this medley nearly in reverse. This was the only known reverse medley that ever occur, however the band played Dew followed by Dark Star on at least four occassions in the first set in shows in 1969.

Some comments are below
On The Bus: Review of May 23, 1972 in London
The "Dark Star" is everything you want from the song in 1972. The initial jam is melodic and fast, as the band finds new grooves and permutations of the theme to explore with fervor. They descend into a quick spacey jam that is cut short with a brief drum interlude. Phil joins Billy for quick, melodic drum-and-bass duet, and then it's off into deep space. Jerry plays wandering lines with that harsh yet clean tone, as Bobby, Keith, and Billy strive to find weirder and weirder ways to play the rhythm, ultimately settling on dissonance and chaos. Jerry finds some semblance of form coming out of the chaos, and Keith peppers his meandering notes with crashing piano chords. Billy swings like the rhythmic beast he is, and Phil helps steer the groove back to the light. Jerry takes some coaxing, but eventually they find release and re-emerge with the "Dark Star" theme, crisp and clear. However, it's clear this one traveled a long, arduous road to get back to the song. It must all seem trivial to Jerry, and he signals the dawn with the opening chord of "Morning Dew." What an epic way to end this sequence, with the gently building guitar lines eventually exploding into the crescendo and the nuclear ashes settling on the soundsphere. Ladies and gentlemen, we're not yet halfway through the first set!!

Review of December 15, 1972 Long Beach for Teens :)

Dead Listening
Blair (I am getting to you soon)