Grateful Dead

August 27 - September 2, 2007

Tapers Section By David Lemieux

I undertook the Taper's Section last November with a pretty simple vision: to have fun providing folks a regular opportunity to hear vault material that kept their interest in Grateful Dead music fresh.

Recently, I and others that work on dead.net became aware that certain fans had been regularly downloading the tracks offered in the Taper Section. From the very beginning, this program has always been intended to be a "for streaming only" service. Downloading was never announced, described or promoted in any manner. The situation that developed over the past months is very different than my original plan.

Where we’re at today requires us to step back, gather some information, do some thinking and get back to you. In the meantime, we ask that you all realize that dead.net's and GDP's commitment to the Dead Head community is unchanged. We’re very excited to be hard at work with Rhino on a number of very cool releases and programs that you’ll be hearing about soon. Please bear with us until then.

See you next week,
David

This week, we’re going to explore some cool moments from the Family Dog in 1969, as well as some great material from 1980 and a taste of 1972.

Although most shows in the Bay Area in the late 1960s were BGP-produced concerts, there was a very hip alternative promoter, namely Chet Helms and his Family Dog at the Great Highway. At the end of the summer of ’69 (no Bryan Adams jokes, please), the Grateful Dead played a few shows at Chet’s cool venue, and from those shows we have some interesting material. From 8/29/69, we have a nice Easy Wind, Me and My Uncle>High Time, as well as the show-closing Lovelight, and from the next night, 8/30/69, we have a very good Morning Dew from early in the show. Be sure to check back next week for another rare track from the Family Dog in 1969.

One thing we always get excited about is a great tour with consistently great performances, with highlights too numerous to list. The mid-August to early-September 1980 tour is one such stretch of shows, and we have a few examples of great material from this tour this week. Unfortunately, two of the best shows from the tour are not in the vault (9/6 at Lewiston and 9/2/80 at Rochester), but what does live in the vault is exceptional. From 8/27/80 at Pine Knob in Michigan, the second set opening trio of China Cat Sunflower>I Know You Rider>C.C. Rider (or China>Rider>Rider, if you will) is as high energy as they come. From three nights later in Philadelphia we have the ending sequence of the show on 8/30/80, featuring Space>Not Fade Away>Black Peter>Sugar Magnolia, One More Saturday Night. A classic 1980 sequence if there ever was one. Unfortunately, the first set of this show is not in the vault. Finally from this tour, we have the show opener on 8/31/80 at the Capital Center in Landover, MD, with a rocking duo of Alabama Getaway>Promised Land. As the flipside to the Philly show above, the second set from this Cap Center show is not in the vault.

Lastly this week, we have a couple of tracks from the first night of the Europe 72 tour, the first two songs played on the tour, in fact. Both of these songs from 4/7/72 in London have a little extra something, as the band was clearly happy to be playing in Europe, a feeling that would evidently continue through the final show on 5/26/72 in London. Oh, yes, the songs: Greatest Story Ever Told and Sugaree. Enjoy.

Be sure to check back in next week when we’ll have some music from 1969, 1972, 1973 and 1985. It’s going to be a busy week. Feel free to write anytime with questions or comments.

David Lemieux
vault [at] dead.net

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Offline
Joined: Jun 7 2007
Weekly History and Streaming Section?

Thanks David. I myself think that the name "taper's section" has an underlying message attached (i.e., tape, record, download), but I guess not. I have certainly downloaded some of it, but it would never affect my decision of whether to purchase, or not, purchase a new release. Those decisions come from my belief of whether it is a cd that I will listen to and get my money's worth out of. I am a full concert kind of guy, and will purchase a complete show, even if you put some of it up already on the taper's section.

But anyway, I will still read the weekly history, but the streaming is not for me, as I have other things to do.

Greg SC

ursus's picture
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Joined: Jun 4 2007
Streaming

Ursus
I admit it - I'm not the greatest computer-technician either. I just can't get your streaming to work. Nothing happens when I click the link. I just get a window telling me, that I'm now listening to this and that - but I'm not listening to anything! Anyway, I think it's a much better idea to continue with mp3's and take a reasoanble price for it.

TigerLilly's picture
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Joined: Jul 2 2007
I opt for plan B

FECKING throwing rocks until I personally believe the reason provided.

*Note: THIS STATEMENT IS MEANT TO BE SARCASTIC, Feck it!
**Note: Hear Hear c.b.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
***Note: *Note is NOT meant for c.b. He has gotten that already without *Note.

Sunshine-daydream1951's picture
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Joined: Jun 5 2007
well said Chris

Bob

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Spanish Jam

deadeasy's picture
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Joined: Jun 7 2007
Compounding the error

It was bad enough that the "powers that be" decided to change the Tapers Section without explanation last week. But when David L cites as a reason an explanation which is so unconvincing you do have to wonder.

I fully accept that we deadheads do not have a right to free MP3s [though what a great marketing ploy that could be if used properly - a brilliant way to convert the yet-to-be-converted] but, having established a pattern, someone, somewhere thought it would be a great idea to pull the plug with no warning, and no explanation. Now, a week later and after much wailing and gnashing of teeth by the deadhead community, we finally get an explanation, but one which doesn't hold water (often happens when you pull the plug). MP3s are the primary medium for downloading music - if the techies behind dead.net didn't know this they should be looking for a new job. But streaming media like WMA files can also be captured and converted to MP3/WAV with cheap and readily available software.

The first rule of marketing is that it is easier to retain existing customers (which is basically what we deadheads are) than to generate new ones. From the correspondence I've seen, dead.net/Rhino or whoever are doing their utmost to alienate their existing customers without a strategy in place to generate replacements.

Another marketing adage is that the best advert is word of mouth. Deadheads are a community like no other, and word spreads like wildfire amongst us. Use us, don't abuse us and we'll market your products for you.

If dead.net is concerned about losing potential revenue there is a simple solution - and I'm not the first to suggest this - and that is to allow people to subscribe to the MP3 downloads for a reasonable sum - say $10-20 a month. The Tapers Section could also generate revenue by having adverts - and not necessarily just for GD products, though that would be the obvious starting point.

Every business wants a regular revenue stream and a subscription service would be the ideal way to generate such a stream (think streaming revenue, not streaming audio).

I am very grateful that David has taken over the job of custodian of the vault and has helped put into the community so much music of merit and I have wrttien to him on several occasions before now to thank him and to wonder at this great phenomenon which is a the symbiotic relationship of the Grateful Dead and deadheads. Please, please though, Rhino/GD do not allow a rift to open between us - you need us as much as we need you. You ain't going to generate a completely new fanbase at this stage of the band's history no matter what you do - you're largely stuck with what you've got.

CJ

cosmicbadger's picture
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Joined: Jun 13 2007
seriously..............for once

If you find someone (indeed someone you care for) trapped in a deep hole and he asks for your help what do you do
a) Give him a helping hand to get out
b) Throw rocks at him till he provides a reason that you personally believe for why he is in the hole

It matters not one bit whether this explanation is really really really true or whether it is a neat piece of face saving from a nice guy who just got chewed out for leaving the vault door open.

Why don’t we all just assume the best and wait for a while to see if this cool new stuff really materialises.....

Offline
Joined: Aug 21 2007
Downloads - not streaming

>>>>>From the very beginning, this program has always been intended to be a "for streaming only" service. Downloading was never announced,

This sounds more like an excuse - of course it was for downloading, otherwise why have them in mp3 format.

Streaming is completely useless - I cannot stream into the car.

There is an easy way out for Rhino - admit you have got it wrong (yet again - you lost thousands of European customers with your ridiculous postage charges) and re-introduce the mp3 format, or alternatively charge a nominal $5 or $10 a week for the mp3 weekly downloads.

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Joined: Jul 29 2007
Strange trip....

Seems a bit strange to me that mp3s would be put up "for streaming" when they're not a streaming form but a downloading form, and perfect for copying to a better and more convenient device than your PC for listening to. If the selections had all been wma files then the streaming-only intent might be more credible.

Perhaps what it really is, is, that a full concert had finally been put up in patchwork form (Hanover, 5/5/78) and "certain fans" had taken the opportunity to piece it together for themselves.

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Joined: Jun 4 2007
Sorry, but it took you,

Sorry, but it took you, what, 8 months to realize that people, when presented with MP3 files, were downloading them? You can't stream MP3, at least not the way you were doing it. Some browsers would open them in another window, but others would download them directly when you clicked on them.

David, you do great work with the content, but someone over there should understand how the tech works. This makes me think that you never really had this site tested, and that your web designers are, well, pretty clueless as to how content works on the Internet.

Frankly, I don't buy this explanation. Anyone who works in web design (and your new site shows signs of being professinally designed) knows what happens when you have links to content like music.

Offline
Joined: Jun 4 2007
weak sauce

Recently, I and others that work on dead.net became aware that certain fans had been regularly downloading the tracks offered in the Taper Section. From the very beginning, this program has always been intended to be a "for streaming only" service. Downloading was never announced, described or promoted in any manner. The situation that developed over the past months is very different than my original plan.

Seems odd that it would take y'all since NOVEMBER to realize that "Oh, these are mp3s. People are probably downloading them rather than streaming them."

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