Grateful Dead

January 14 - January 20, 2008

Tapers Section By David Lemieux

We’ve been having such a good time sticking with one year during the past few installments of the Taper’s Section, we’ve decided to continue with this format for yet another week. This week, we’re finally breaking out of the 1960s and 1970s by jumping forward to 1990. There was plenty of great music played throughout the year by the Grateful Dead, so on to the music.

Our first selection is the show opening combination from 6/23/90 at Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Feel Like A Stranger, West LA Fadeaway. This was the first of a two day run of concerts that began at noon with an opening set by Little Feat, followed by three hours of music by the Grateful Dead with the shows wrapping up by 5 PM, leaving the evenings free to explore beautiful Eugene.

Next we’ll take a little trip to Europe to stop in and check out the second set opener from Berlin on 10/20/90, Eyes of the World>Samson and Delilah. Although I only attended the Paris and London shows on this tour, I heard stories of a small theatre in Berlin, at which each and every seat had a little fold-out desk top, complete with a little lamp. A perfect place for tapers to rest their D-5s. This show was broadcast on the radio, and it certainly must have been a treat to hear Eyes of the World in a foreign country.

Next we’ll pay a visit to Albany, NY, where the Grateful Dead played their first shows at the then-new Knickerbocker Arena in March, 1990. A good chunk of that run of concerts has been justifiably immortalized on the excellent Dozin’ At The Knick, but there was plenty of great music played aside from what made the album. From 3/26/90, we have this unique second set jam of Victim or the Crime>China Cat Sunflower>I Know You Rider>Women Are Smarter. Brent does some great stuff with Women Are Smarter, and the jam out of Victim is suitably chaotic.

Finally this week, we have the big jam from the final show in Europe in 1990, 11/1/90 at Wembley Arena. The first two nights at Wembley were sold out, but this final night was only about half full, and it was very odd to see the Grateful Dead performing at the height of their popularity in an 11,000 seat arena that was only half full. From this final show of the tour, we have a very interesting palindromatic sequence of Playing In The Band>Dark Star>Drums>Space>Dark Star>Playing In The Band. Bruce does some extremely spacey things during the latter parts of the jam. A perfect way to end the tour, and, of course, the encore that night would be non-other than U.S. Blues.

Check back next Monday for more great music here at the Taper’s Section. As always, we encourage you to write with questions or comments. Please send to the email address below.

David Lemieux
vault [at]


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Joined: Oct 5 2007
1990.. great year indeed

ah spring tour 1990 one of the last great runs for sure..We still have vivid memories of the first knickerboker run..superb performances all tour.. I had not listened to the wembley shows in a wile more great jamming.. hard to belive they played to a half sold house..nice to hear all of this..spring tour with Brent playing so well..only to check out a few months later..but the band in the fall with hornsby was so dynamic... miss it all thanks so much... not fadeaway

izzie's picture
Joined: May 26 2007

a fine fine year for this sweet young thing! (at least I was back in 1990) Loving these selections!!

Joined: Jun 5 2007
Thank You

Today started out on the rough side as Mondays often do. Thanks for lifting my spirits with some epic Grateful Dead.

Get Fried Man

Joined: Aug 30 2007
thank you!!

Oh how I love those 90 shows!
I was 17 at those Albany shows and got shut out the first two nites but got in for the nite you posted...great show, although Jerry sings two songs in second set...

I wish I had caught those Europe shows, but I was saving my money instead to come to the west coast for the denver, arizona new years first time on the west coast!!

Does God look down on the boys in the barroom
Mainly forsaken but surely not judged?
Jacks, kings, and aces, their faces in wine
Do Lord deliver our kind

frankparry's picture
Joined: Jun 7 2007
Final London Show

Dave - from a UK deadhead for more years than I care to remember I thank you for the Wembley selection in this week's taper section. I remember those shows very clearly. I'd taken some time off to go to Paris and for the London shows I had to drive down from Nottingham after work each night, so I was completely knackered by the end of it. Nonetheless, I enjoyed it immensely. Jerry gave it his all, which was quite something considering he was going down with a bad cold. Yes, the venue was only half full, but I remember the extra date had been scheduled fairly late, so perhaps the news in those early Internet days hadn't filtered through everywhere. I hadn't seen the Dead since the 1981 Rainbow shows and after the final concert in 1990 a friend of mine rather prophetically asked me to stay a little while to check out the parking-lot scene as 'we may never see the band again' - we didn't, 1990 was the last visit :-(

sixstringsmoreorLesh's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
benefiting from

tj crowley
i'm unable to benefit from these posted gig's and am hoping that someone out there has a copy of that olaying>dark star> space... piece. thnakyou tom crowley
w -e-

Joined: Jun 18 2007
Thanks David

Great selections once again! Thanks for making my Mondays bareable.

cactuswax's picture
Joined: Jun 7 2007

Who was it last week that said something along the lines of "1974 ... almost as good as 1990"
Well here we have the best of both worlds, two weeks in a row! Thanks Dave!

Joined: Oct 2 2007

You've just made this Yogi levitate a little higher.


Sunshine-daydream1951's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
Europe 90

i was at both the shows on offer here, and Berlin was an amazing place to be, an ultra modern(for the time) conference center. One day i will get around to posting my photos of the lace


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Spanish Jam


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