Grateful Dead

Janurary 4, 2010 - January 10, 2010

Tapers Section By David Lemieux

Welcome back and thanks for joining us on for first full week of 2010 here at the Tapers’ Section. This week we’re going to feature music that has been inspired by one of the finest, and most important, behind-the scenes people in the Grateful Dead world, Eileen Law.

Many of the readers here might be aware of how the Grateful Dead’s tape archive became so, well, organized, and that is due mainly to the efforts of Dick Latvala. Dick, as you might know, was a fixture in the Grateful Dead world since the 1970s (he also saw plenty of 1960s Grateful Dead shows), and it was Dick who, around 1985, suggested someone should take care of the tapes, and the next thing he knew he was hired to do so, and the rest is history. Likewise, about 15 years before that, Eileen Law showed up at the Dead’s offices, and suggested someone should take care of the memorabilia and ephemera that was evidently accumulating in the Grateful Dead world. She was hired, and over the next 35+ years she amassed a stunningly large collection of Grateful Dead items that included photos, newspaper clippings, business documents, concert posters, awards and loads of original iconographic items, such as the Touch of Grey skeletons, Hell in a Bucket trident pitchfork thingies, and on and on. I was fortunate to work with Eileen at GDP 1999-2006, and up to the present in a more limited way, and she had plenty of great stories about specific shows and memories, and these stories, so often surrounding New Year’s Eve shows, has inspired the Tapers’ Section to put together a week that centers around these stories.

Our first selection is this version of Ripple from 4/28/71 at the Fillmore East. Eileen had once told the story of the crew setting up a microphone on the side of the stage at the Fillmore East for Eileen and a couple of the other support staff/friends to sing backup on Ripple. Lo and behold, while producing the Ladies and Gentlemen…the Grateful Dead: Fillmore East April 1971 album in 2000, Jeffrey Norman was mixing the multitracks when he found a track assigned to background vocals on Ripple. So, if you listen closely, you’ll hear Eileen singing backup on this penultimate electric version of Ripple until 9/3/88 (they’d play it acoustically in 1980 a lot).

Another show that comes to mind when talking about Eileen is 2/28/73 at Salt Lake City. Eileen flew out for this show from the Bay Area to celebrate her birthday, and what a show it was! This mighty fine concert features loads of first cabin Grateful Dead, including these great versions of Jack Straw, He's Gone and Big River. Perfection! If you want to hear five hours of this excellent music, Dick’s Picks Vol. 28 was drawn from this show and the previous show, on 2/26/73 in Lincoln, NE.

Eileen had also mentioned the 10/20/74 show at Winterland, a possible goodbye for the Grateful Dead. She described walking up the ramp to the stage, for a gathering that might have been the final show. Thankfully, they returned to playing in the not-too-distant future, and from that great night of music on 10/20/74, with Mickey sitting in during his return to the Grateful Dead, we have a few of the songs from the big jam, featuring Playing In The Band, Not Fade Away and The Other One.

Finally this week, we have the first live version of Cassidy, from 3/23/74. This would be the only Grateful Dead version of Cassidy until 1976, and the only one with the background “doo doo doo doo”s. Cassidy, of course, is Eileen’s daughter. While here at the Cow Palace on 3/23/74, we figured we should play you the final version of the musical sandwich consisting of Playing In The Band>Uncle John’s Band>Morning Dew>Uncle John’s Band>Playing In The Band.

Well, thanks for joining us. The next time you’re flipping through the booklets that accompanied Dick’s Picks 23, 28, 33, 36 (these ones really stand out as making full use of the GD’s non-musical archives) or really any Grateful Dead archival release, you can thank Eileen for not only saving all of that amazing memorabilia, but for digging it out and keeping it so well-organized. Thanks, Eileen!

David Lemieux


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Joined: Jun 5 2007

LOL, the link is more messed up then I thought, click on PITB , UJB link & still just get The Other One???

Joined: Jun 5 2007

I click on Cassidy & I get The Other One???????????, any ideas ??????????? TY

Joined: Jun 5 2007

WOW, what a way to wake up.....the only reason I love Mondays is this.

The most perfectly played & sung version of Ripple I ever heard, simply beautiful.
And cudos to Eileen

Joined: Jun 6 2007
Fabulous Selection

Thank svery much for the history and connections.Always made the Dead music multi dimensional !!

lamagonzo (not verified)
Correction on last PLAYIN'>UJB>...>UJB>PLAYIN'

Love that you included this inspired jam but it was certainly NOT the last one the Grateful Dead did. Please include this clip from Lewiston, Me., 9/6/80: Playin>UJB>Drumz>Space>NFA>Wheel>UJB>Playin the next time you put together a Labor Day Taper's Section. This show was AWESOME and way, way long.
Note: Technically you are correct that this is the last jam with the Dew in the middle.

lethedoom's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
link issues

What I find @10:15 pm pst sunday--the link for the final selection--PIB>UJB>MD>UJB>PIB opens 'The Other One' as does 'Cassidy.'.The first five links are ok. While PINB,NFA and TOO is ok, 'The Other One' also is a separate link. I hope this helps you to get this working as designed.



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