The Wait Is Over… The Winterland 1973 Box Has Arrived!
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Sherman, set the Wayback machine for the second week of November, 1973. The Grateful Dead are on a roll…yes, again! The summer had seen the band playing triumphant mega-shows with the Allman Brothers at RFK Stadium in D.C. and at Watkins Glenn in upstate New York. With their popularity seemingly still escalating by the month, fall tours took them to various East Coast haunts and all over the Midwest. On October 15, they released Wake of the Flood, their first album on their own independent record label, and copies were flying out of stores coast to coast. So the mood in the band was WAY UP when their incredibly busy schedule brought them home for three shows at Winterland in San Francisco November 9, 10 and 11—before they set off again for points East.
Winterland always brought out the best—and the beast—in the band. Located across Geary Boulevard from the Fillmore Auditorium, the one-time home of the Ice Follies had hosted dozens of amazing rock shows since Bill Graham started putting on shows there in the late ’60s. It’s where the top tier of Bay Area bands would get together occasionally for marathon shows, and it’s where the most popular out-of-town acts—from The Doors, to Hendrix, to The Who, to the Rolling Stones—would play in the era before faceless sports arenas became an unfortunate fact of concert-going life. But nobody played Winterland as often as the Dead. By the time they’d trucked their ever-expanding sound system to the venue for their November ’73 shows, they’d already logged 31 concerts there—and there would be another 28 eventful Dead nights at Winterland before the old place was closed after the Dead’s New Year’s Eve show in 1978, and eventually reduced to rubble to make way for condos. Sure, the 5,000-capacity hall was acoustically challenging and a little frayed on the edges. But with its narrow open floor, shallow lower balcony that encircled the entire venue, its deeper back balcony chill zone, and serpentine walkways between floors, it was a tremendously fun and entertaining place to see a show—especially a Dead show.
Winterland 1973: The Complete Recordings captures the Dead during one of their peak years and absolutely at the top of their game. Spread over nine discs, it includes every note of three complete consecutive shows (save for the encore of November 9, which was not recorded), so there’s plenty here to satisfy every fan: magnificent jams on “Dark Star” (which sprawls to 35 completely compelling minutes!), “Playing in the Band,” “Eyes of the World,” the still-new “Weather Report Suite” and more; kick-ass rockers of every variety (“Sugar Magnolia,” “Casey Jones,” “Johnny B. Goode,” “Truckin’,” et al); haunting ballads including “China Doll,” “Stella Blue” and “To Lay Me Down”; a truly spectacular “China Cat”; and the first of just three versions ever of the dazzling sequence of “Playing in the Band” > “Uncle John’s Band” > “Morning Dew” > “Uncle John’s” reprise > “Playing” reprise. (For a complete listing of the contents of the nine discs, go here.)
All the music here was drawn from Grateful Dead crew member Kidd Candelario’s crystal clear and wonderfully present 2-track soundboard reels of the shows, and enhanced by the mastering work of the always reliable sonic wizard Jeffrey Norman, who used all sorts of arcane processes to bring it all into the glorious world of HDCD sound. This stuff will rattle your bones! The beautifully designed box also comes with a colorful booklet containing scads of great photos and a fine essay by Grateful Dead historian Dennis McNally.
We like to think of Winterland 1973 as being part of the noble tradition established by the ecstatically received Fillmore West 1969: The Complete Recordings, and as a precursor for other complete-run boxes to come. So clear out a chunk of space in the ol’ CD case, ’cause this mutha’ is a BIG ONE!
Don’t delay! You can order Winterland 1973: The Complete Recordings right now by clicking here !
(To help get you in the mood, you can preview some of the music on the Winterland 1973 box by clicking here. And to give you a little glimpse of what Winterland was like, check out this video montage with audio from the ’73 shows and visuals from The Grateful Dead Movie, shot at Winterland a year later!)
Does anyone else think that the Friday night show is damn fine? It gets bagged, even in the liner notes (to an extent). I think it's great. Sure there is no Playing>Uncle>Dew>John>Playing or Dark Star, but I think the WRS>Eyes>China Doll is wonderful. I don't buy the idea that the Sunday night WRS is the best. My favourite (at the moment anyway) is the Friday night. The Playing is sweet and the China>Rider transition is hot.
What's not to like?
Josh Leopard called me last night about getting a replacement for disc two. They are still waiting for the manufacturer to send them. Once the Dead store gets disc 2 they will be sent out promptly. Hopefully this helps others who waiting for their replacement.
and anyone else, God forbid, who's having similar issues.
With tears in my eyes I report that Casson has moved on. However, our enthusiastic new support person for Store- and merchandise-related matters is Josh Leopard, josh dot leopard at iventa dot com, and he stands ready to pitch in and straighten out snafus as they occur. If you have problems with your order, email Josh and feel free to keep me in the loop too.
that shouldn't be happening. I'll look into this and report back. Sorry for the trouble.
Contacted casson dot kauffman at iventa dot com over a month ago about problems with disc two. I was told that I was to receive a replacement as soon as more were available. Have not seen a replacement and have sent numerous emails to casson dot kauffman at iventa dot com and have not receive any new responses on when a new disc will be sent. Unfortunately I spent $100 and I am stuck with a defective disc. Does anyone have any information on how to get this disc replaced?
Cinci 73 was my first show and I was amazed at the quality! The Stella was stellar! Now I know why I have always revered certain songs over others! Grateful Sets!
If the thunder don't get you, the lightning will!!
Well, if anybody get to the end of the line, they'll get to read this thng!
I commend GDP/Rhino for putting out this set. I'm a serious advocate for all releases being complete. I understand why the band might not want some of the stuff not released becuase of mistakes, but anybody who ever got into the GD seriously collected the tapes. Deadhead's didn't care about the mistakes, if we really got into it, we would talk about them and chalk it up to "nobody's perfect" I guess playing music perfectly when the band's style is to take musical chances is very human.
Years ago I wrote a letter to Dupree's Diamond News , yes, a real magazine , back in the day , about if they are going to release these Dick's Picks, release the whole show! Well, later on they did, and it's gotten better over the years. I try to purchase all the complete shows and boycott incomplete releases. Sorry, but that's the way it is! Hey, if you want a best of release, make your own from the complete stuff....that's what we did back in the day on cassette with all the nasty wow/flutter and hiss.....did I mention at 8th generation too!
However, this is a beautiful release and the performances is as good as it get to perfect. Sure, there will always be some miscues and clunker notes, but this is rock and roll! Also, the band at the time NEVER thought that complete shows would be released with MAYBE the exception of the "one from the vault" "family show". The sound quality is excellent, besides the recent re-mixes from multi-track shows like the fillmore west 69, and two from the vault, this is some of the best stuff I've heard. The recording has a really nice balance and good analog warmth, it does sound a bit compressed in relation to the cymbals, but I don't hear any hiss almost, that's some serious digital wizard stuff! I hope they put out some more 73 , and it's not overated in the least, nor is 1972.
Another all time release is 05-26-72, and Hamburg 72 is incredible!
Bring more, more , more please, and what's the deal on Sunshine Daydream these days, I mean , that's a instant amount of money....but's it's not about that all the time....it's about the right thing to do....it's history
I wish that for just one time, You could stand inside my shoes, and for just that one moment, I could be you - Bob Dylan, Positively 4th St.
just a small bit of critizism...with all that was spent on improving the sound, guitas, amps etc..they could have given 'bill the drummer' a new set
excellant quality, great seperation, truly ahead of their time and still
sorry for the hassle, but send email to the great Casson, i.e. casson dot kauffman at iventa dot com, and she'll have things fixed up fast. Send me a PM if this makes no sense!
Hey Now. I've found my copy of Winterland 73 has some electronic static on a couple of tracks. Who do I contact to report this, or get replacement disks?
Love it otherwise. Thanks!