Grateful Dead

April 5 - April 11, 2010

Tapers Section By David Lemieux

Welcome back to the Tapers’ Section, where this week, as promised, we’ll be digging back into unreleased Grateful Dead music, from 1974 and 1990, all from the Bay Area.

Our first stop this week is on 2/24/74, the final night of a three night run at Winterland to start the band’s 1974 performing year. I’ve long been a big fan of these shows, as interesting a trio of concerts as the November, 1973 shows at Winterland. From this night, we have Loser, Playing In The Band, with the latter including a typically hot 1974 way-out-there jam. Just like the 1973 run, these three nights in February, 1974 each include some extremely good, and interesting music.

Jumping ahead 16 years to 1990, we have the post-Drums sequence from the first of three nights in Oakland on 2/25/90, featuringThe Wheel>Gimme Some Lovin’>Wharf Rat>Sugar Magnolia. These three shows were right in the middle of a long stretch of multi-track recordings of the Grateful Dead, starting 5/27/89 and running through 4/3/90, recorded for consideration on what became Without A Net. Very few shows between those dates were not recorded to 24-track tape (actually, 26-track, as the recordings were made to 2” 24-track tape, with a second tape, a ¼” 2-track tape, synced up with the multi-track that included Mickey’s electronic drums that he used sparingly in this era), so there are plenty of possibilities for more albums like Nightfall of Diamonds, Truckin’ Up To Buffalo, Crimson White & Indigo, and Dozin’ at the Knick. In addition to great tapes, this was also a period when the Grateful Dead were playing particularly well.

From the following night, on 2/26/90, we have Playing In The Band>Terrapin Stationfrom the second set. At the time, you could be fairly sure Playing would go into one of three songs: Uncle John’s Band, Crazy Fingers and Terrapin (with exceptions like the Eyes in Hartford a month after this), but as these combinations were played so often, they were also played extremely well.

Finally this week, we have the entire first set of the final night in Oakland during this run of shows, on 2/27/90, featuring Let The Good Times Roll ; Feel Like A Stranger ; Sugaree ; Victim Or The Crime ; Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodleloo ; When I Paint My Masterpiece ; Bird Song. This was still the time when Victim hadn’t found its permanent home in the second set, and the set includes a cool mid-first-set placement of ½ Step. Good stuff.

Check back next week for a bunch of good 1972 Grateful Dead music. And as always, we encourage you to write to the email address below with questions, comments or suggestions.

David Lemieux


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smallz's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
early '90

Great stuff here, David. Thanks for another great week!

As for the question posed above by grateful prof, I agree w/ Wharf Rat and Morning Dew being songs that held up throughout the band's career. Another I would add to the list would be Stella Blue. Always done with passion and grace. I have yet to meet a Stella that did not let me down ;^)

Joined: Jan 13 2010

sounds good! surprise surprise surprise!

gotta love the GD.

Joined: Jun 4 2007
re: grateful prof

As for long running tunes played most consistently with inspiration, I would have to say it's the Dew. Either that, Don't Ease or BIODTL. haha...

Joined: Oct 1 2007
wharf rat....

thanks, David as always. The 2/25/90 Wharf Rat supports the view I have long held that Wharf Rat is perhaps the song which remained strongest/of interest for the longest stretch of years. I can find things to like/interesting in Wharf Rat's of every era. Wonder what other folks think--what Dead song was played with interest and passion for the longest stretch of years (I know, I know, all of them, each is a gem in its own way, bla, bla, bla!)

Joined: Aug 27 2008

Thank you!
I needed to hear a clip from this show, a very nice PITB, in my opinion.
Echoing what wilfredtjones had commented, this run would make a nice box set, and I would buy it, too.
The 2/27/90 clip is great, too.

lethedoom's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
Thanks for another beautiful

Thanks for another beautiful array of music. All the links are working well.

lethedoom's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
On April 5th, 2010

On April 5th, 2010 WalpoleChinaCat said:

Hey Now
It appears the 2/25/90 link is not working with the clip player


Same day @ 1:25pm PDT it is still a dead link

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Joined: Feb 10 2008

I look forward to this every Monday. I am a little disappointed when something commercially released is featured as I have all of that. However, I understand that everyone isn't as absorbed as I am and may not have heard it. Anyways, great stuff.

I have a suggestion. How about placing a link where Today in Grateful Dead history can be archived? I love this on SiriusXM but cannot always catch it due to work or other activity. Sometimes something is so awesome(ok many times) I want to hear it again but i can't. Just a thought and I believe lots of people are feeling the same.

David, Thanks for all the good tunes. You have filled Dick's shoes quite well.

marye's picture
Joined: May 26 2007

we think it works now. Please speak up if you're still having trouble.

josh e bear's picture
Joined: Feb 29 2008
Hartford, 3/ 90 < I was there for that Eyes > Jam !!


Hartford, 3/ 90 was like my 5th show ... set 2 is Incredible, this show should be released...

why : the Playin > Eyes > " Carnival Jam" is just so juicy and uplifiting, a Must Hear for this time period... I am so lucky i was in this nite...


Josh E Bear !!


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