Monday, January 30, 2017

Peakin' At The Beacon June 14, 1976

John "Rock'N'Roll" Rockwell gave the official word on June 16, 1976 that the Grateful Dead were back in New York City.  This was the first Manhattan show in more than four years since March 28, 1972. And look there is a New York Times mention of Europe '76 (I must have missed those tapes)

In honor of Butch Trucks, we present this Beacon show. While the Dead only played two shows ever at the Beacon (this night and the next), the Allmans played 238 shows there (I only saw one). Can you imagine 2,600 seats in the middle of New York City?

My friend Bobby Morris told me he and 20 high school friends went to this show and the next night.  Where did they get so many tickets??

There is a nice soundcheck video below as well.  Have fun kids. Listen to this interesting 1976-only Crazy Fingers>Dancin in the Street>Cosmic Charlie
You also have to love one of the last standalone first set Playing In The Bands (which ended in 1977)

New York Times, June 16, 1976

A very nice under-rated June 1976 show.

Cold Rain and Snow
Mama Tried
Row Jimmy
Brown Eyed Women
Big River
Might As Well
Lazy Lightnin'
Tennessee Jed
Playin' in the Band

The Wheel
Samson and Delilah
High Time
Music Never Stopped
Crazy Fingers
Dancin' in the Streets
Cosmic Charlie
Help on the Way
Franklin's Tower
Around and Around

U.S. Blues

Other NYC Shows May-June 1976

The April 29, 1971 New York Times reviewing the Duane Allman sit-in show on April 26. "Disappointing Musically"

Monday, January 23, 2017

Alive and Kicking into San Bernardino Feb. 26, 1977

I truly like this student review of the first show of 1977, which I discovered for the first time today.  Of course, the author is not a deadhead, as he doesn't mention the monsterious new "Terrapin" song at the top of the show, or even the Deal and great Sugaree. It just says the Dead are awesome, even though they are older than 1970 and should be considered passe, outdated.  Fabulous college paper 1977 review of show numbero uno.

Alof of people think this Betty is the best show of 1977. Yes, it is that good. Listen, my friends.

Terrapin Station
New Minglewood Blues
They Love Each Other
Estimated Prophet
Mama Tried
Playin' in the Band
The Wheel
Playin' in the Band

Samson and Delilah
Tennessee Jed
Music Never Stopped
Help on the Way
Franklin's Tower
Promised Land
Eyes of the World
Dancin' in the Streets
Around and Around

U.S. Blues

According to Cash Box, the Dead played Lovelight on this night. :)

Here's some other fun stuff, reviews from real fans. :)

A great review from Augy from San Diego in that 400,000 downloaded version of the show from the archive.

Reviewer: Augy - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - November 25, 2008
Subject: Only show with no drums and Jerry into a Moog I ever saw!
Also, this is the only time I ever saw Phil do a distinct bass solo; during "Eyes of the World", of course. Those of you who saw them in '73-'74 may have, but after this, he pretty much stopped that. This is my third show, and believe it or not I actually think this was the weakest of my amazing first four, i.e. that's how great the other three were in my opinion! The best of these I think was the fourth one, namely at The Forum 1977/6/4 i.e. just prior to the more well known Winterland shows in June. The other two being the second of each of following the pairs: with "The Who" at Oakland Stadium 1976/10/10 and at L.A.'s Shrine Auditorium 1976/10/15!
The Swing was a strangely built building for a concert! (By the way it no longer exists because apparently a plane crashed into it after E.L.P., being the last band to play there shortly after Grateful Dead played there in Dec. '80; (which was also a great show, and the only one I ever passed out at, but that's another story)! (What the hell does E.L.P. have to do with it, nothing other than the coincidence which I explain below). The following if you'll bare with me, is some historical context of this show and as you know, it started a new era for the band, in addition to simply the new compositions that is, also new devices facilitating the new compositions etc.
Starting with what is simply weird about the Swing but of lesser significance, since it's only noticeably on the audience tape; I got from a fellow who recorded from "a" balcony. Why I saw "a" balcony is because, there were only balconies on either side, yet not in the back like most rectangular buildings, such as, for example, Winterland or the Oakland Aud. (Kiaser). Those had their long axis running to and from the stage.
The Swing on the other hand, was at a 90 degree angle to more common configuration, i.e. it's width was much longer than it's length from the stage towards the audience. Hence, the audience tape I had before the "Betty Board" came out, sounded very lopsided! Despite this, it had an uncut "Franklin's Tower" unlike the first board I got! However, unfortunately the fellow from whom I got my first board copy, was unwilling to let me do the dub it myself, yet he didn't pay enough attention to the contents of recordings were prior to copying it. So consequentially, I lost the intact audience "Franklin's Tower" having been recorded over with the board which was cut in "Franklin's Tower". So, I was relieved that it's been patched here!
What's more significant but not readily apparent, is the mention of "technical difficulties" by Bob Weir early in the first set; (not that equipment delays were very unusual but this one was unique). That is, here Steve Parish was rigging Garcia into a Moog synthesizer which Keith played ever so briefly!
One gets the distinct impression that Keith apparently disliked electric keyboards. This is understandable given how primitive synthesizers were at this early time! Moreover Billy K. was interviewed in B.A.M. magazine around the time of Brent's first show, stating there was room for improvement in the technology which came since obviously they used them extensively later on. How much did this have to do or not with Keith's eventual exit from the band? I did hear something when Brent came in the band, that they were looking for "more sustain", as can be produced with electric keyboards.
Other evidence for this is a show a Texas later this same year, but I wasn't in attendance so I can't say for sure yet Keith seems to have left the stage after very briefly playing an "electric" during the beginning of "Playin' in the Band"? (Perhaps it's not appropriate to characterize Keith in this way since at least the following year he played for example, at the outdoor show at my alma mater when I was a freshman, at U.C. Santa Barbara, an electric "Fender Rhodes" piano), as well as an organ on a few tunes during his first rehearsals in '71.
So, back to Garcia, who just started using the "Unity Gain" effects loop into his volume knob on his guitar five months prior to this, at the show the day before my first show (i.e. the 1st one with "The Who" at Oakland Stadium" 1976/10/9). Here at the Swing was the first use of the new "Mutron" envelope filter, (synthesizer-like device), which still at this early time apparently had to be piped through a Moog synthesizer, configured as such for this debut of "Estimated Prophet" yet it was odd to see Jerry plugged into Keith!
Now, I'm not saying Dead Heads in general feel as my personal friends at the time did who weren't too enthused by bands such as E.L.P. which among others used synthesizers extensively, however I was more open minded. I remember pointing out to my friend as Steve Parish was plugging Jerry into the Moog since we were up in the front of this $7.50 general admission concert.
The state of the art at the time was that synthesizers could only play a single note at a time i.e. monophonic, and only Keith Emerson at the time had a keyboard capable of polphony until later. Another coincidence, is that the only other famous professional guitarist that I ever saw play live using a "Travis Bean" guitar besides Jerry Garcia was Greg Lake, (Jerry's had a sticker on it saying "The enemy is listening"); not that that has anything to do with it but it is still true!
Some of you may remember around '89ish when briefly, (which I only saw once at The Forum in Inglewood, Ca.), Parish bring out a gray Stratocaster with a big box, (Roland Synthesizer?), attached to the bridge for Jerry to noodle on during the "Improvisation" section; (I refuse to call it "Space", since there is no air in outer space, hence no sound). I knew folks who felt this is one of the best early renditions of "Slipknot!" I myself am kind of bias, since it was the only one I saw before they brought it back out at Tempe, Ariz. in '83!

San Diego

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Good Times at Kezar, May 26, 1973

Even though the hippie was dead, San Francisco still rocked with the Grateful Dead in late Spring of 1973.  Oh, I loved outdoor shows in the sun, usually so long and not as intense as some of the East Coast or late night jam-infested performances. But sometimes three sets and very solid to great versions of all the tunes of the Dead such as it being a Betty Board a top-5 of all time China>Rider, top-3 Here Come Sunshine, wonderful Playing in thr Band, and a really good He's Gones>Truckin>Other One>Eyes>China Doll.  And lots of nice articles, a short super-8, etc etc  Have fun or listen more). i also added a little fun stuff from the shoet March 1975 KICKS show which is throughly covered at  More video if you click

Promised Land, Deal, Jack Straw, Tennessee Jed, The Race is On, Sugaree, Mexicali Blues, Row Jimmy, Looks Like Rain, They Love Each Other, Playin' In The Band

Here Comes Sunshine, El Paso, Loser, Beat It On Down The Line, You Ain't Woman Enough, Box Of Rain, China Cat Sunflower-> I Know You Rider, Big River, Bertha, Around & Around 

Mississippi Half Step, Me & My Uncle, He's Gone-> Truckin'-> The Other One-> Eyes Of The World-> China Doll, Sugar Magnolia


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

October 30, 1972: The Grateful Dead Hit Detroit

Don't forget that Motor City as the Dead rolled into Detroit Town on the night before Halloween 1972.  This wasn't one of the more jam-invested shows of the era, but there is a nice long stand alone Truckin' that opens set two which you can hear now or Playing if you prefer.

Wonder if these early Detroit fans got off on the Dead more than say Jethro Tull or Heep?

Bertha, Me & My Uncle, Deal, Black-Throated Wind, Sugaree, El Paso, Bird Song, Big River, China Cat Sunflower, I Know You Rider, Jack Straw, Don't Ease Me In, Mexicali Blues, Box of Rain, Playin' in the Band 

Truckin', Ramble on Rose, The Promised Land, Tomorrow is Forever, Around & Around, Candyman, Greatest Story Ever Told, Mississippi Half-Step, Sugar Magnolia, Not Fade Away, Goin' Down the Road Feelin' Bad, Not Fade Away

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Rumor: Grateful Dead Acquire More Betty Boards (40th Anniversary of Cornell??)

Feb 16 Update IT'S TRUE

The near-mythical, frequently bootlegged Cornell show will be available in its debut commercial form, alongside three other previously unreleased full-show live recordings from the same trek: Veterans' Memorial Coliseum in New Haven, Connecticut (May 5th, 1977); Boston Garden in Boston, Massachusetts (May 7th, 1977); and Buffalo Memorial Auditorium in Buffalo, New York (May 9th, 1977). The recording source for the shows is the iconic Betty Boards, the soundboard tapes created by the Dead's live recording engineer Betty Cantor-Jackson.

I kind of got a hint from Rob Eaton back in January

There is a significant rumor, let me repeat rumor, that the Grateful Dead and Rhino have acquired a number of Betty Boards that they had not possessed in the past.

Update 1/13   Someone who was there at the beginning said to me "This is a true statement".

Hmm. It's the 40th Anniversary of 1977, and the Dead have apparently never had Boston, Cornell, and Buffalo (May 7-9, 1977). But wouldn't that make a nifty box set.  While I attended Boston, the only person I know who actually was at Cornell was my buddy Rick Sullivan.

Update 1/12 from Reddit Grateful Dead from a highthyme:

According to Jambase last May, superstar David  Lemieux told Relix

“I do not know specifically but I have heard from many people that they know where it is and they know who has it and that’s fine. We’ve certainly made a note that we’d love to have it back as we would with any master Grateful Dead tape that we don’t have in the vault. But there’s really nothing we can do about it. We’re not going to pay for our own tape. That’s one thing I don’t think we’d ever do is to pay to buy them back and I don’t think they’ve been offered to the band in a long, long time. They know where we are, we’re easy to find and I think it has been made clear that we would love to have them back. Some people would just rather have the tapes in their closet than in the vault, but that’s fine. It is what it is. Again, there’s nothing we can do, we don’t lose sleep over it, but it is as it is.”

You can read this anyway you want, but if this rumor is true, there are several possibilities 

  • A Cornell May 8, 1977 Special Release
  • A Weekend May 7-9, 1977 Box Set
  • A Spring 1977 Part 2 ( a la 1990) with Philadelphia, Springfield, Capitol, Palladium through Buffalo. Wow
  • Some other year altogether with the "rumor" being b.s.
1977 Betty Boards include:

02.26.77 The Swing Auditorium, San Bernadino, California
05.05.77 New Haven Coliseum, New Haven, Connecticut
05.07.77 Boston Gardens, Boston, Massachusetts
05.08.77 Barton Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
05.09.77 War Memorial Auditorium, Buffalo, New York
09.29.77 The Paramount Theater, Seattle, Washington
10.02.77 The Paramount Theater, Portland, Oregon
10.28.77 Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall, Kansas City, Missouri
10.29.77 Field House, Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, Illinois
10.30.77 Assembly Hall, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana
11.01.77 Cobo Hall, Detroit, Michigan
11.05.77 War Memorial, Rochester, New York (End Of Show)
11.06.77 Broome County Arena, Binghamton, New York

I have confidence that the word on the street may be good, but always remember this my friends

Per Wikipedia:  When the cover is held upside down and viewed in a mirror, the text reads "ugly rumors". Ugly Rumours was the name of a rock band founded in part by then-future UK prime minister Tony Blair, while studying law at St John's College, Oxford during the early 1970s; he sang and played guitar. The band's name came from the writing on the cover of From the Mars Hotel.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

T for Texas Dead November 18-19 1972

The Grateful Dead dressed in their leathers and rode into Texas for some smoke and shows in 1972.
At first, the Allman Brothers were supposed to play two nights with the boys, but Berry Oakley's death put those shows on hold until Watkins Glen the following year.

This was the 10th and 11th shows in Texas as the band had been playing there since 1968.

Our friend Dick loved this Texas run as he says :

The last 5 shows in Texas, are each worth getting. The quality is not
so hot, but the playing is ferocious. On 11/18, in Houston, there is a
major, top 10 of all-time, version of "Playing in the Band". (I am
starting to think that this period has possibly the most intense versions
ever for this defining piece of music.)  The show on the following night
(11/19) is one of the most exciting shows over-all, from this southern
tour. There is a "jam"  segment before "Miss.1/2 step..", that contains
several distinct, and very unique themes, including the "philo stomp",
"weather report" theme, a brain-fry, and a very lengthy bass solo!

Before the record store day release of 11-18-1972, there was a killer Tapers Section release of Playin' In The Band which you can hear above.  There is another interesting review of the first show below, but what is really special is this article here which speaks to someone stealing a cassette of the 1971 radio broadcast, which is the first reporting discussing a FM cassette of a show (before reviewing the new Europe '72 album (which was released just a few days prior to these shows on Nov. 5; the review is about Nov 26)  Here's some of these shows

1972 Warner Ad

Ace Review 1972

Friday, January 6, 2017

Heaven Help the Ivy-League Fool: Yale University, March 12, 1978 with the Bob Weir Band

Sorry this performance is so obscure, it's even hard to find (think there is one on LL) and was not even included in Deadbase 11.  But Bobby and team played at Yale on March 12, 1978.  I've included a few performances of the Bob Weir Band around that time including March 10 in Providence, which I saw. Enjoy 1978 Rock Star Bobby and a great article on the Yale show

Hi Brent!  Great Jim Anderson pictures

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

New Year's Eve 1981: Dave, Morning Dew, Dark Star

Sorry guys, I have been under the weather so I missed the Exact 35th anniversary of my longest and maybe favorite top-2 or 3 show, December 31, 1981.

Yes, I know I was there ( as well as Fiesta Hall stealth show earlier in the month), and Joan did not mess with most of her Dead set, except during Baby Blue and she may have added to my only Bobby McGee and Bye Bye Love, but I always had the Greek Baby Blue in September, maybe the best one, so just swap that one out with the this one. Mountain Girl married Jerry at this show and she didn't get to sing. Gee.

And for your lucky reading, looks like I just found an Official published review of this show which is attached as a picture and a full PDF.  It's actually a review of all Bill Graham shows that night as well as a nice rendering of the always friendly bill.  Because of Bill, you can have all this  (which includes the full Stanford Daily issue of January 8, 1982

And don't forget, there were FOUR sets, and a video exists and we had breakfast served at 4AM after the Dark Star>ST Stephen>The 11>baby Blue   (replace the middle tunes with Bertha>Good Lovin).

This is really a remarkable show , set 3 alone may be the best I ever heard the band play during any New Year's from 1980-1985. Kesey. Ballons. Iko, Playin Sandwich of Terrapin, The Other Ibe, NFA, GDTRFB, Dew. Close to perfect. Strike that. Perfect.

An acoustic set with Joan Baez preceded the Dead only sets, set list was: Me & Bobby McGee ; Bye Bye Love ; Lucifer's Eyes ; Children of the 80's; Banks of the Ohio.  so.rry deadlists, there were four other songs prior. ANd watch the Matt Kelly stuff, he rocks, I think he comes out during Good Lovin too.

1st Electric Shakedown Street [15:15] ; Me And My Uncle [2:59] > Mexicali Blues [4:41]; Cold Rain And Snow [6:20] ; C C Rider (1) [8:32] ; It Must Have Been The Roses (2) [6:27] ; Beat It On Down The Line [3:33] ; Big Boss Man (1) [6:01] > New Minglewood Blues (1) [6:10] ; Don't Ease Me In [3:12]

2nd Electric Iko Iko [7:24] ; Playing In The Band [14:49] > Terrapin Station [12:24]> Playing In The Band [4:28] > Drums [9:55] > Space [7:40] > The Other One [11:09] > Not Fade Away [7:28] > Goin' Down The Road Feeling Bad [7:21] > Morning Dew [10:44]

3rd Electric  Dark Star [15:16] > Bertha [6:32] > Good Lovin' [10:03]
Encore It's All Over Now, Baby Blue (2) [7:07]

Comments Source: (of course) Iko at midnight. (1) with Matthew Kelly (2) with Joan Baez

Back to Back; Chicken Shack

If you think about it, 1977 was the king of the duplicate song, where the Grateful Dead might play the same song two nights in a row.  Note I am using "nights" instead of "next show" to calculate this.

In fact, during my 8 shows of 1977, I saw the last ever back-to-back performances of The Other One, Eyes of the World, Half-Step as well as Franklin's in 1979 and Not Fade Away in 1981.   

November 1 in Cobo in Detroit followed by the next night in a different country (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) show an ultra rare three-peat of Truckin Terrapin and Around & Around. 

I'll have to check the record for consecutive shows (Black Throated in 1972?, Samson in 1976?)

By 1982, it was much more rare to see the same song on consecutive evenings, although Worcester got two Black Peters in April 1988. Thanks to Joe Kinney on FB for sparking my interest in this topic

Song Day 1 Day 2 Notes
The 11 12/30/69 12/31/69
Alligator 12/30/69 12/31/69
Dark Star 4/25/70 4/26/70
Attics of My Life 6/5/70 6/6/70
St Stephen 4/7/71 4/8/71
Morning Dew 4/28/71 4/29/71
Comes A time 12/4/71 12/5/71
China>Rider 3/21/73 3/22/73
Casey Jones 3/21/73 3/22/73
Box of Rain 6/9/73 6/10/73
GDTRFB 7/31/73 8/1/73
Stella Blue 9/7/73 9/8/73
He's Gone 8/5/74 8/6/74
Weather Report Suite 10/17/74 10/18/74
Wharf Rat 6/27/76 6/28/76
US Blues 7/16/76 7/17/76
Help on the Way 9/23/76 9/24/76
Uncle John's Band 3/18/77 3/19/77
The Music Never Stopped 4/29/77 4/30/77 Saw night 2
Scarlet>Fire 5/4/77 5/5/77
Terrapin Station 11/1/77 11/2/77
Truckin 11/1/77 11/2/77
The Other One 11/4/77 11/5/77 I saw both!
Eyes of the World 11/4/77 11/5/77 I saw both!
Mississsippi Half-Step 11/5/77 11/6/77 I saw both!
Sugar Magnolia 12/30/77 12/31/77
Sugaree 1/20/79 1/21/79
Shakedown Street 5/11/79 5/12/79
Franklin's Tower 10/27/79 10/28/79 I saw both!
Estimated Prophet 11/4/79 11/5/79 Saw night 1
Ripple 10/30/80 10/31/80
Bird Song 10/16/81 10/17/81 
Bertha 12/2/81 12/3/81
Not Fade Away 12/30/81 12/31/81 I saw both!
Black Peter 4/7/88 4/8/88
China Doll Never