Grateful Dead

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Blair’s Golden Road Blog: What’s Your GD IQ?

By Blair Jackson

“Pop quiz!” Was there a more frightening combination of words in high school? “I knew I should've read that chapter!” “If only I had been paying attention when the teacher outlined that formula, instead of daydreaming about Tish Ferguson.”

Have no fear. This test is gonna be fun! I promise it will not count toward your final grade. Think of it as a little brainteaser to keep you sharp and counteract all that soporific tryptophan you put in your system on Turkey Day.

What follows are 50 questions (requiring a total of more than 150 answers) about the Grateful Dead. Some are reasonably easy, some are pretty darn obscure. You might know many off the top of your head; others might require a little research or the assistance of pals. You can work in groups, if you'd like. Uncle Waldo and Aunt Sue might want to tackle some of these during one of your post-Thanksgiving leftover meals. That Waldo—what a know-it-all! There are no rules. Use paper or stay virtual. Nobody's going to grade them. There is nothing to win for getting a high score.

In fact, you won't even be able to tabulate your score until I print the correct answers in the next Golden Road Blog on November 30. That's right—the answers are not printed upside down in small type below. Because I know you will TOTALLY cheat, just like you do with the Find Six Differences cartoon on your newspaper's comics page.

Enjoy! Happy Thanksgiving, Dead Heads! Gobble-Gobble-Hey!

“Estimated” saxophonist

1. Complete these titles of Grateful Dead songs or labeled sections of songs:

a. Quadlibet for _____
b. Antwerp's _____
c. Sand Castles and _____
d. At A ____
e. Alice D. _____
f. Cardboard ____
g. Milkin' the ____

2. On which Dead album does “Serengetti” appear?

3. What Christmas-themed song did Pigpen sing half a dozen times in 1971?

4. On the first Grateful Dead album, who is credited with writing “The Golden Road (To Unlimited Devotion)”?

5. What food does an insistent repeated chant demand in “The Barbed Wire Whipping Party”?

6. In which Dead originals or cover tunes would you find the following folks?
a. Joe Brown
b. Miss Brown
c. Tom Banjo
d. Scheherazade
e. Mona Lisa (2 songs)
f. Shannon
g. Bogeyman
h. Delia-D
i. Baby Louise
j. Black Madonna
k. The Mystery Killer
l. Murphy

7. Name two Grateful Dead cover songs associated with Rev. Gary Davis.

8. Name two Grateful Dead cover songs associated with Noah Lewis.

9. Name two Grateful Dead cover songs associated with Will Shade.

10. During which song would Bob and Phil sometimes sing “Burn down the Fillmore, gas the Avalon”?

11. Which song briefly contained this opening line: “When I woke up this morning, my head was not attached”?

12. What L.A. session ace played saxophone on the album version of “Estimated Prophet”?

13. Sarah Fulcher was a singer in the Merl Saunders-Jerry Garcia band for a few months. On which Grateful Dead album does Fulcher appear?

14. In which Grateful Dead songs would you find these places?
a. Singapore Street
b. Shadowfall Ward
c. El Salvador
d. Muskrat Flats
e. Grosvenor Square
f. Planet Earth
g. Bakersfield
h. Cheyenne
i. Bigfoot County
j. Portland
k. St. Louis

15. For the birds! Which songs mention our feathered friends?
a. bluebird
b. whippoorwill
c. raven
d. nuthatch
e. seabirds (2)
f. bird on a phone line
g. bird of paradise
h. eagle (3)
i. cuckoo
j. winter birds
k. crow
l. saw-whet owl

16. How about these other animals?
a. lion
b. tiger
c. sperm whale
d. rattlesnakes
e. dogs (3)
f. whitetail deer
g. cat (3)
h. rat (2)
i. rabbit

17. Speaking of dogs, what album version of a Dead song features the sound of snarling canines?

18. Name four Dead originals that mention shotguns.

19. At what festival did Phil precede the Dead's set by saying “settle down and spread, 'cause it's time for breakfast in bed with the Grateful Dead!”

20. What was Keith Godchaux's lone songwriting contribution to a Dead album?

21. Who “failed at war”?

22. In which song did a brief interlude known as “Little Star” or “Bob Star” appear a handful of times in 1983?

23. Who is Clifton Hanger?

24. What book did Garcia hope to turn into a film and direct?

25. Who was president of the U.S. when the Grateful Dead visited the White House?

26. Match the cover artist or photographer with the album:

1. Shakedown Street      a. Bill Walker

2. Blues for Allah      b. Bob Thomas

3. Anthem of the Sun      c. Bob Seidemann

4. Live Dead        d. Dennis Larkins

5. American Beauty      e. Ken Friedman

6. Built to Last      f. Gilbert Shelton

7. Go to Heaven      g. Phillip Garris

8. Wake of the Flood      h. Kelly/Mouse

9. Dead Set        i. Rick Griffin

27. Help Bobby make it to “The Promised Land” via the route in Chuck Berry's song. Arrange these in the correct order:
2. Houston
3. Raleigh
4. Norfolk
5. Los Angeles
6. Charlotte
7. New Orleans
8. Atlanta

28. Which different spinoff/solo bands did each of these guitarists play in?

a. Robbie Hoddinott

b. Terry Haggerty

c. Bobby Cochran

d. Tom Fogerty

29. Can you identify the songs each of these pairs of words comes from?
a. silver dime
b. toothless crone
c. fantasy petals
d. taste eternity
e. feeling groovy
f. electric blue
g. dream doll
h. violin river
i. amber wind
j. cool chicks
k. ripe persimmons

30. On which Grateful Dead album will you find “River of Nine Sorrows,” “Magnesium Night Light” and “Post-Modern Highrise Table Top Stomp”?

31. Who is Courtney Love's father and how does he connect to the Grateful Dead?

32. Which two members of the Dead play on all these songs: “Deep Wide and Frequent,” “Gran'ma's Cookies,” “Razooli,” “Skywater,” “The Eliminators”?

33. Which of these five Bob Dylan songs was never performed by Dylan with the Grateful Dead?

a. “Rainy Day Women #12 &35” b. “Don't Think Twice It's Alright” c. “John Brown” d. “It Aint Me Babe” e. “Dead Man Dead Man”

34. What's the link between these people—Jerry Love, Paul Humphrey, Johnny De Fonseca, Daoud Shaw?

35. Who do these middle names belong to
a. Richard
b. Hall
c. John
d. Chapman
e. Charles
f. Steven

36. Who was the only member of the Grateful Dead born outside of the United States?

37. In what city did the “Oops!” concerts take place?

38. What do these five shows have in common: 3/23/68 (Grand Rapids), 2/10/73 (Winterland), 11/27/78 (Spectrum), 8/27/92 (Shoreline), 8/17/86 (Boreal Ridge)?

39. At Monterey Pop, what band did Garcia introduce from the stage as “a perfect example of what the world is coming to”?

Anthem of the Sun cover

40. Which band members were married to these women?
a. Sara
b. Brenda
c. Lori
d. Shelley
e. Caryl
f. Lisa
g. Deborah
h. Jill
i. Carolyn

41. In 1969, the Dead performed “Mountains of the Moon,” “St. Stephen” and “Lovelight” on which TV show?

32. Who described the Grateful Dead as “the antidote to the atom bomb”?

43. With what song did the Dead open their set at Altamont?

44. What was the first Grateful Dead studio album to come out on CD upon release?

45. What bands played before and after the Dead at Woodstock?

46. What member of the Grateful Dead played at Woodstock '99?

47. Put these Garcia guitars in order of their first appearance: Tiger, Gibson SG, Wolf, Les Paul, Guild, Travis Bean

48. By my count, the Dead performed 10 Beatles originals. Name them.

49. What was the venue that became the Fillmore East called the first time the Dead played there?

50. What were the A and B sides of the first Grateful Dead single?

* * *

(Please DO NOT answer questions in the “Comments” section below. I will mercilessly delete them!)


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AZanimal's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
A correction to a quibble

I have been reminded that the person in question in #12 did indeed play saxophone (on the outro), as well as lyricon (on the solo) on Estimated. (edit - I see that Blair has similarly reminded here.)

Joined: Nov 12 2007
What song did Jerry Garcia

What song did Jerry Garcia perform the most in his career? (Not only with the Dead only, but all his bands)

Joined: Jan 13 2010
Great post, Blair.

i know way too much about this band.

Not that that's a bad thing.

I would pass the test; i also know i would get some of them wrong.

Some meshugenah items in there, folks.

Joined: Jun 6 2007
It's true...on some questions...

...there may be more answers (dogs, cats, rats, whatever) than I asked for... Give yourself an extra credit point!

On #12... he played both saxophone and lyricon, AZanimal...

slo lettuce's picture
Joined: Jul 20 2012
"y = 5, always".........

somebody has been paying attention to detail and it certainly hasn't been me. i got a few questions answered and #51 for sure ..... :) . looking forward to the answers (and, yeah, i would've totally cheated).

AZanimal's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
A couple of quibbles

re: #12, he played not a saxophone but a 'lyricon', a reed-driven synthesizer.

re: #16, 'tiger' or 'tigers' appears in 3 different songs, NOT including Hunter's Tiger Rose and unrecorded Lazy Tiger Rag.

Fun list, some very tough questions on there.

scott1129's picture
Joined: Jun 6 2007
Questions and Answers

For Number Sixteen h) rat (2) could be three if you include Operator.

Joined: Aug 27 2008
Answers to these questions

I probably correctly answered 20 questions -- less than half.

Mr. Pid's picture
Joined: Dec 22 2007

There's some deep random in there, Blair. Don't even have half of 'em, and some of the ones I do know that I know are pretty quirky. A couple of them are pretty easy, too. And isn't one of them in fact a trick?


scott1129's picture
Joined: Jun 6 2007
GD Academic Alliance for Early Release of Archival Recordings of

Jerry snoring at the Ritz between shows.
Other grate(sic) questions.
1) How many times did Jer Bear shave off the beard ?

2) How long did Bobby wear a beard ?

3) Last song Pig played with the group ?

4) Last song TC played with the group ?

5) Last song Keith played with the group ?

6) Last song Brent played with the group ?

7) Last guest performer with the Group and the song they joined in on ?

8) Who was "Mason" and who are his "children" ?

9) What color is the dog in Bob's barroom joke ?

10) What did Spencer Davis say at his second sit-in in Inglewood ?

Bonus Question)

What color are the Band's eyes ?
a Jerry
b Bobby
c Pigpen
d Phil
e Billy
f Mickey
g TC
h Keith
i Donna
j Brent
k Vince
l Bruce


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