Grateful Dead

February 2 - February 8, 2009

Tapers Section By David Lemieux

Welcome to February here at the Tapers' Section, where we have a nice range of Grateful Dead spanning 18 years or so.

Our first stop this week is the Fillmore West in San Francisco on 2/8/70, where the Grateful Dead were wrapping up a magnificent four night run of shows before departing for New York and the famous three nights at the Fillmore East on 2/11,13&14/70. From the final night of the Fillmore West run, we're pleased to play this excellent Smokestack Lightning, one of the finest I've ever heard, up there with the one from a week later at the Fillmore East (and featured on Bear's Choice).

Before we get into the 1978 Grateful Dead we promised last week, we're going to play some 1988, because we don't play too much from that underrated year very often here at the Tapers' Section. From 9/5/88 at the Capitol Center in Landover, MD, the third of a four night run, we have the opening of the second, China Cat Sunflower>I Know You Rider, Playing In The Band>Uncle John's Band>Playing In The Band. The music in 1988 lacked the long jams (mostly), but had an inspired tightness.

Now we'll hit some 1978 Grateful Dead. From 2/4/78 in Milwaukee, WI, we have this very nice second set sequence of Dancing In The Street>Terrapin Station>Playing In The Band. This show is often overshadowed by the night before and after, but there is some fine playing from Milwaukee.

From the next night, we have two tunes to play for you: the double length Samson and Delilah, and the pre-Drums version of Truckin'. The Samson is so long (and good!) because evidently the vocal mics weren't working, so the band ran through the tune once instrumentally, and then again with vocals. Unique and excellent.

Be sure to stop back next week for some tasty 1970 material, plus a great sequence from 1967.

David Lemieux


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Joined: Oct 5 2007
Wild smokestack...

thanks David for some great music, love the span in years,, one wild smokestack for sure, comlete with guitars dancin back and forth on the speakers.( a bear mix for sure), on to some of the bands more concise playing 88, looking back at that year it was special , for the tight playing.. for sure..78,, perhaps the most underated year. thanks for pulling out. the 2/4/78 bit,, a rarity,, the double samson from 2/5 just brings out the smiles.. would luv to have been witness to that. well.on groundhog day, spring tour is commin..Smokestack would be a great tune for the 2009 band to take a walk with.. let me dive into this stuff for a wile.. thanks..

smallz's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
hey now

Great tunes this week. Thanks again! Lovin' the Truckin' from Cedar Falls. It came right after one of my all-time favorite Scarlet-Fires and the jumbo Samson&Delilah from this week. From the sound of this Truckin', the tremendous energy from the previous three songs was sustained.

Joined: Jun 10 2007
post blizzard dead

no, it wasn't really a blizzard, but we did get 13 inches of snow and missed school for 3 days (it really is awesome to have that kind of schedule!)- i am unhappily back in 'teacher clothes' but i am groovin to some groundhog day dead-- thanks, david.


wilfredtjones's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
interesting dichotomy between playing in the bands

After one listen to the 2-4 clip I notice the dichotomy between the two Playing Jams. 2-4's has a jazz-like flowing linear clean sound lead from Jerry before it phases out (or -cuts-), not the kind of alien wierdness found on Selland 3 weeks earlier. Early '78 has some of the best gems. Now, to dust of my well worn copy of DP 18. (Non-sequitor alert: what a game last 'bout a best of the dead in pittsburgh as a salute?...probably easier than the dead in az., right?).

Joined: Jun 27 2007
Ground Hog Day

Oh yes! Good thing DL delived so early today! The ground hog came out of his hole and started "dancing in the street" so spring is coming early.
The selections look wonderful, I'll be here all week.
Thank you.

round and round


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