Grateful Dead

Rocking the Cradle: Grateful Dead, Egypt 1978

From Egypt With Love

The two-CD Road Trips set,
plus a third Bonus Disc,
is drawn from the two
shows of the series that are in the vault,
October 21 and 22, 1978.

::More Information on RT 1.4

More Egypt '78

Egypt In The Archives

Photos, Passes & the Poster

The Egypt Shows

September 14, 1978
September 15, 1978
September 16, 1978


Enjoy a short video montage from the
Egypt '78 DVD.
Watch Now

Watch a Video of Bertha in Egypt,
September 16th
Watch Now


Listen in on an interview
with Richard Loren on how Egypt
Listen Now

At Long Last...
Egypt '78
Order Now

2 Disc Set + 1 DVD

:: View the boxed set in 3D!

Good things come to those who wait! First, it took 30 years to produce this ultra-cool 2CD/DVD set from the Dead’s legendary September 1978 run at the Sound & Light Theater, outside Cairo, nestled in the dunes just a short mummy-walk from the Great Pyramid and the mysterious Sphinx. Then, Dead Heads had to endure the long, restless weeks between the announcement of the release and when they could actually order it. Well, ring them bells, because the wait is over! is NOW accepting orders for this beautiful and historic package, Rocking the Cradle: Grateful Dead, Egypt 1978, which includes two exceptional music CDs and a DVD with over 95 minutes of concert footage from the Egypt shows (plus an impressionistic “Vacation Tapes” mini-documentary that shows the band and Dead family at play).

Much has been written about this storied adventure: About the band’s long-standing desire to play in “places of power,” as Phil put it years ago… The incredible logistical gymnastics necessary to get permission for this strangest of American rock bands to bring their peculiar alchemy to the cradle of the ancient world… The huge, scattered caravan of crazies that descended on Cairo from the U.S. and Europe, drawn to the desert by some irresistible force… The sheer magnitude of shipping in tons of sound equipment, setting up in 110-degree heat, maxing out the local power grid, trying to turn the King’s Chamber in the Great Pyramid into an echo chamber (alas, Osiris would have none of that!)… The wondrous interplay at each of the three concerts between Nubian drummers and singers and the Grateful Dead… The miraculous final show, during a total lunar eclipse… The synchronicity of that last show and the signing of a peace treaty between Egypt and Israel… Magical horse and camel rides under the desert moon…Trips up and down the Nile… High adventure at every turn!

The three Egypt concerts—September 14, 15, 16, 1978—were captured on a 24-track tape recorder with an eye towards putting out a live album to help defray the (considerable) cost of the expedition. When the Dead got home, however, they discovered that the tapes of all of the first night and part of the second were not useable because of technical problems. Then the band got wrapped up in finishing their Shakedown Street album (begun before the Egypt venture), and soon the notion of putting out the Egypt album lost its momentum. But just as Howard Carter and all those other explorers in the ’20s and ’30s couldn’t stay away from the tombs in the Valley of the Kings, the Dead weren’t about to let those Egypt multitracks stay buried by the sands of time. Next thing you know there’s a phone call to ace GD mixer Jeffrey Norman and he and vaultkeeper David Lemieux discover that despite the problems with the first night’s tapes, there’s still lots of great material available from nights two and three, including: a dynamite “Shakedown Street” (just the second live version ever), “Truckin’,” an exquisite “Stella Blue,” “Eyes of the World,” fresh takes on then-new songs such as “Stagger Lee” and “I Need A Miracle,” and the hypnotic Egyptian tune called “Ollin Arageed” that features Hamza El Din and other percussionists, who are then joined by the Dead for a jam into “Fire on the Mountain.” Wow!

And the concert video, though rough around the edges in places, is quite a revelation as well. Not only does the DVD include many of the best tunes on the CDs—you’ll dig seeing Jerry do some pretty energetic thrashing here and there—it contains two songs not on disc—“Bertha” and “Good Lovin’.” The concert material has been mixed in both stereo and surround sound, with two listening options: DTS 5.1 and PCM Stereo. The beautifully designed booklet (with cover inspired by the late, great Alton Kelley’s Egypt 1978 tour poster) contains a revealing essay by longtime Ice Nine Publishing chief (and Egypt trip co-organizer) Alan Trist, and many rare photos. All that’s missing is sand, the smell of camels and some “hubbly-bubbly”!

So don’t delay! Order Rocking the Cradle: Grateful Dead, Egypt 1978 today by going Here.

Track List

Disc 1

1. “Jack Straw”

2. “Row Jimmy”

3. “New, New Minglewood Blues”

4. “Candyman”

5. “Looks Like Rain”

6. “Stagger Lee”

7. “I Need A Miracle”

8. “It’s All Over Now”

9. “Deal”


Disc 2

1. “Ollin Arageed”

2. “Fire On The Mountain”

3. “Iko Iko”

4. “Shakedown Street”

5. “Drums”

6. “Space”

7. “Truckin’”

8. “Stella Blue”

9. “Around And Around”



Track Listing


2. “Good Lovin’”

3. “Row Jimmy”

4. “New, Minglewood Blues”

5. “Candyman”

6. “Looks Like Rain”

7. “Deal”

8. “Ollin Arageed”

9. “Fire On The Mountain”

10. “Iko Iko”

11. “I Need A Miracle”

12. “It’s All Over Now”

13. “Truckin’”

Featurette: “The Vacation Tapes”


Road Trips Vol. 1, No. 4 features Winterland ’78 “From Egypt With Love” shows!

It must be the Curse of the Pharaoh’s Tomb or something, because once we’d put together Rocking the Cradle: Grateful Dead, Egypt ’78, we couldn’t get Egypt out of our system. Suddenly it seemed only natural that the next Road Trips should be culled from the great five-night “From Egypt With Love” run the Dead played at Winterland a month after they returned from Cairo. Each night the band treated the hometown fans to an extensive slide show of their travels, and at two of the concerts, Hamza El Din joined the Dead for versions of “Ollin Arageed” that helped summon even more of the flavor of Egypt. Harmonica ace Lee Oskar (of War) showed up a couple of nights, and at the final show, John Cipollina added his distinctive guitar to the back half of the second set. The two-CD Road Trips set is drawn from the final two shows of the series, October 11 and 22, 1978. Get complete order information Here.


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Joined: Jul 22 2007
Egypt Vibes 2 drummers R better than 1

I got mine on the 29th. I like how my cd's were wrapped in the shirt. Looked pretty cool. I didn't have any glue issues or any issues. They take care of me better. hahah just kiddin. I listened to the cd's before watchin the dvd. It's a typical 78' performance, but after watching the dvd jerry looked like he was pullin off harder chords and notes. Bobby's voice I thought was in prime sound. With the 5.1 DTS sound, it sounds better than any cd player i heard. The DVD was awesome tho, cool pigtails jerry and jerry looked like he was really enjoying himself. Fire on the Mountain was nice without its scarlet before. Let's jump right in. on the cd's i liked the bonus cd with Terrapin Station. I can't believe people are mad about the slices in the songs. who cares its like for 2 seconds anyway. But the DVD was cool. they would show the crowd and they didn't look egyptian. heh. I know some egyptians and they are cool dudes. The Road Trips was cool too. The Sphinx was never the same after this.

You could see in donna jeans' eyes that she was leaving soon. :)
Keith had some sort of rag on his piano. My friend spotted that out instantly. ahah


Joined: Oct 2 2008
A bit disappointing...

Pardon me for saying the unthinkable, but I think the quality of the performance is rarely inspiring. Of course, the event itself was historic. But the music, the vocals, the playing is disappointing. I understand the urge to release everything possible, but I think there needs to a more objective set of standards. Releasing all this material that has maybe 10 minutes of inspired playing is a bit deceptive. Just an opinion of someone who generally buys every new CD that comes out and has dozens and dozens that I find I only listen to a few times....

buddy plant's picture
Joined: Jul 7 2007
Why do they glue...

... the discs to the cardboard? I remember reading an interview with Betty Matthews some time back, and she indicated that she actually stayed at the pressing plant to supervise the production of one of the albums. I don't think that quality control is a high priority these days. Of course YMMV.

Joined: Jun 4 2007
Love the terrapin from 9-15 Bonus Disc...

...strange sounds to open and Jerry fired up and inspired on this one. I listened to the opening 3 times and the whole song twice already.

On the Sugaree, from Road Trips Disc 1: I need a second listen on this one to find the redeemer to offset the off-key vocals and tape splice. (The one on the Yale Bowl from the Summer '71 Road Trips Dark Star is far more easily justified; that set is a MUST HAVE BY THE WAY).

In reference to a previous poster; yes, DO check out DP 18 (worth the price of admission alone on the Samson (*extended* Jerry solo) and Scar>Fire), yet we also get the double delight of Estimated>Eyes on Disc 2!

Just one question...Why no 9-14 stuff anywhere on the Egypt package, 'distant vocals'? I listened on everything seems to sound at least passable sonically to me. AT LEAST DO THE COMPLETE RUN IF THE COMPLETE SHOW ISN'T DOABLE FOR WHATEVER REASON. Probably an answerable question; yet, it just as probably will remain indefinite, as to the answer.

Anyhow no glue/scratch issues here, keep the non-plastic items coming!

gratefaldean's picture
Joined: Jun 22 2007

Thanks to all for the heads-up on the glue issue. Mine had it too, but I very slooooowly and carefully removed the disc from the sleeve, glue seemed to stick only to the very edge which I was able to pull off. No ill effects so far as playing the disc goes...

Underthevolcano's picture
Joined: Feb 6 2008

I received my order yesterday. It has the dreaded glue issue! CD 1 was stuck under the cardboard. Does anyone out there know what could be used to safely dissolve the glue from the CD? I don't want to try to play it as it is. Thanks.

Joined: Oct 1 2008
still waiting

I'm still waiting, nothing has arrived yet.

amellowd's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
No problems!

I pre-ordered a couple of weeks ago and got the delivery on the 29th! Don't know why I got mine before people that ordered on the first day (bummer). No glue issues or skipping (never had these problems with any of the Road Trips). The aud splices on the Road Trips are a little annoying but not horrible. I completely understand the ones with Stella (one of the best ever!!!!!!!!) and He's Gone, but almost wish they faded out with Sugaree. But to me, really not that big of a deal. We all know the vault isn't perfect and we just have to live with these little anomalies. Over all, I have been really enjoying all of it, especially the sound quality (mind blowing)! I expected that the Egypt shows would have some flubs, but great nonetheless! I vaguely remember a quote by Jerry that generally states "we blew the big ones: Woodstock, Monterey, Egypt." It's still nice to have a little history along with some very inspired moments (e.g. Shakedown jam! Truckin' jam!).
Take Care All!!!

DedButt's picture
Joined: Sep 15 2008
My experience

I received an email last Thursday or Friday, informing me that the order shipped. It actually arrived on the 30th, so I assumed that they did that so that I would have it on the release date. I ordered the Egypt show, the Road Trips discs and a shirt, and they all came together. It was sent regular shipping (I think it was USPS, but I threw out the box).

I'm listening to it now. I assume, on the audience splices, that the shows would have been incomplete without them, so my feeling is that it's better than no splice at all. At least you get to hear the entire song. Ending without it would have been like coitus interruptus. ;)

Bamski's picture
Joined: Jul 11 2007

When I was online at Best Buy yesterday, there was a woman standing behind me who received the CD/DVD already and I asked her if she received it via overnight shipping. She did not. I thought since it was released on Sept 30th that it was mailed on Sept 30th? My order has not arrived yet, but I shipped via snail mail.


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