Grateful Dead

July 30 - August 5

Tapers Section By David Lemieux

We have more than 20 years of Grateful Dead music for you this week, spanning many great eras. Hopefully we’ll have something for everyone.

Like last week, we have some of the excellent music from the band’s first-ever concerts outside of California, in a foreign country no less (or, as Homer Simpson calls Canada, America Junior). From 7/30/66 at the PNE in Vancouver is this nifty twosome of the quintessential 1966 jamming vehicles, Cream Puff War-Viola Lee Blues. As it turns out, the band stayed in British Columbia for a week, where they then played the Afterthought in Vancouver on August 5 and 6, 1966. Sharing the bill at those shows was the Vancouver band the United Empire Loyalists. Jeff Ridley, a member of the United Empire Loyalists, shares this interesting anecdote about the Grateful Dead’s first Canadian visit: “The UEL shared the bill with the Grateful Dead for the first time at the Afterthought in the Pender Auditorium the week after the PNE gig. Our manager, Jerry Kruz, had gone to the PNE 'trips festival' and saw Big Brother & the Holding Co. with Janis, and the Grateful Dead. Jerry thought the Dead had potential and asked them if they'd like to play at his club the following week which they agreed to do. Jerry put them up in a motel for the week. The Dead wanted to do something to publicize the upcoming Afterthought gig. While driving around Vancouver they saw the bandstand at English Bay so they got all their equipment, set up in the bandstand and played a concert. Traffic stopped; it hit the papers; it was quite an event. The Afterthought gig went really well; the place was packed. It was supposed to stop at midnight but at midnight the Dead were playing, coincidentally, In the Midnight Hour. The police came and said to Jerry: 'you have to shut this down.' But Jerry said: 'you want to stop it, you go in there.' But they declined and the Dead played into the wee hours.”

Our next stop this week is in 1974, at Dillon Stadium in Hartford on July 31, one of the longest Grateful Dead performances on record. From the third set, we have the big jam featuring Truckin’>Jam>Mind Left Body Jam>Spanish Jam>Wharf Rat. There is plenty of interesting music in this 40 minute piece. And from the first set, an interesting and quite common combination performed in the summer of 1974: Mississippi Half-Step>It Must’ve Been The Roses.

Moving out of our date-appropriate week, we have the mid-first set songs from 5/5/78 in New Hampshire, El Paso and a nice, mellow They Love Each Other, along with the encore of Werewolves of London.

And, getting back into the groove of the week, we have the first set closing trio from 7/31/82 at Manor Downs in Austin, TX, Brown-Eyed Woman>The Music Never Stopped>Deal. This is drawn from the cassette master, as 1982 fell in the interregnum between the reel-to-reel recordings (end of 1979) and the Beta PCM digital recordings (end of 1982).

Next we’ll go forward seven years, to the excellent Cal Expo run in August, 1989. These shows are often overlooked due to the three-night runs of shows that sandwich them (Alpine in July, and the Greek shortly after), but there was plenty of great music played at Cal Expo. First up we have the very unique pre-Drums sequence featuring Truckin’>Wang Dang Doodle>Crazy Fingers>Cumberland Blues>Eyes of the World>Drums. Very cool indeed. And from the next night, an equally intriguing pre-Drums sequence of Hey Pocky Way, Playing In The Band>I Know You Rider>Terrapin Station. Nobody saw that Playing>Rider segue coming, I’m sure. These Cal Expo 1989 recordings were drawn from the VHS PCM digital masters, as the crew switched from recording to Beta PCM to VHS PCM in 1989. So far, these VHS PCMs have proven to be more robust and reliable than their Beta counterparts.

Finally this week, by special request, we have a Pigpen song from 4/7/72 at Wembley Empire Pool (later Wembley Arena) in London: Mr. Charlie from the first set. As we’ve mentioned, some of the multi-track master of this show has severe technical problems, but as evidenced here and on the wonderful Steppin’ Out with the Grateful Dead album, there is plenty of great material.

Check back next week when we’ll have more August Grateful Dead material. Feel free to write with questions, comments or suggestions for the Tapers Section.

David Lemieux
vault [at]


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Joined: Jun 5 2007
Wembley 4/7/72

Thank you kindly David. Pigpen's in good voice here. Chooba Chooba!.
Is this concert the most under-rated in GD history?. For the first show of the Europe 72 tour the boys hit the ground running. Looking forward to other gems from the jewel box. Cheers!

doglogz's picture
Joined: Jul 30 2007

Multitudes of thanks for releasing all of these raw gems.

I love to see something from the 7/28/73 encores, 5/30/80, Estimated from Alaska, or the 1st "I want to Tell You". It's been a while

Just wondering about any available rehearsals or takes of Jerry's work on film soundtracks "Zabriski Point" or "Smoke"???

Joined: Jun 25 2007
Can't get enough vintage Dead!


Just love the Cream Puff War-Viola Lee Blues from 1966.

I just love the old stuff! Please send more! :-D

Joined: Jun 20 2007
Nice Sandwiches!

Hey DL,
Thanks for all the crunchy sandwiches dude.
More, more, more!
I love any crazy transitions you can throw our way.
Say hi to RGL.

Joined: Jun 4 2007
Thanks David

Dude you are the man and you are definitely looking out for us heads. Way to go with stealthily putting out the whole 5/5/78 show week by week. Nicely done under the radar (somewhat). That is too cool. Made my week. This section is one of the greatest things to come along and the ipod loves it!! We appreciate all your work on this. Keep it up!


sixstringsmoreorLesh's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
Y E S !!!!

tj crowley

try to get in that incredible viola lee > cumberland 10 31 70 gig thta's magic!!

Joined: Jun 10 2007

yippee!!! i love mr charlie! i even had a dog named mr charlie (r-i-p, doggie!)
thanks for the tunes! i have a looooooong drive ahead, and you will make the hours go faster and more beautifully than i could ever hope!
thank you!
have a great week-

gespacho's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
jerry's birthday

hey david. i beginning to really like mondays as well, thanks so much. but.... what about jerry's birthday? i know he played some shows on his birthday. (one at a zoo, if i remember), there's nothing anywhere on this sight about his 65th. anyway, keep up the good work. peace, and Happy Birthday, Jerry, we miss you.

pantagruel's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
United Empire Loyalists!

Too cool! They were one of the hippest bands of Vancouver's psychedelic era, and their early relationship with the Dead left an indelible stamp on their sound. Their "hit" single, "No, No, No," was a re-working of Pigpen's take on "You Don't Love Me" (yes, the same one that ABB did years later), which UEL heard on one these early visits the Dead made to Vancouver. Another UEL tune, "Lookin' and Searchin'," is very closely related to "The Other One."

Any band whose principal influence is "Primal Dead" is obviously very cool. They have a disc, "Notes from the Underground," that may be a bit difficult to track down, but worth the effort.

Joined: Jul 30 2007

Thanks for some wonderful music David. I want to ask you to kindly put in some highlights from the only GD show I attended: 10-13-90 Stockholm, Sweden
It would be so nice, please?
Regards from Norway!


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