Grateful Dead

May 12 - May 18, 2008

Tapers Section By David Lemieux

This week we have some nice music from 1970, 1972, 1977, 1978 and 1981, so without further ado, on to the music.

Our first stop this week will be in Kirkwood, MO, on 5/14/70. This show took place the night before a great show at the Fillmore East in New York City, and less than two weeks after the famous Harpur College show, and although perhaps a little under the radar compared to those two shows, the 5/14/70 show certainly does offer some excellent music. From the start of the electric set, we have the quintet of songs Casey Jones, China Cat Sunflower>I Know You Rider, Mama Tried>High Time. The Rider is interesting as this was a time when it was played both in electric sets as part of China>Rider, as well as a stand-alone number in the acoustic sets in a different arrangement.

Our next stop this week is in Lille, France, to a free outdoor concert that was the makeup date for the cancelled concert a week earlier, at which, as the story goes, the band narrowly escaped with their lives after having to cancel the gig at the last moment due to the equipment truck's failure to arrive on time for the show. But, the Grateful Dead being the righteous bunch they are, returned to Lille to play a free concert in the public square in the center of town. There are some great photos of this concert in the booklet for Steppin' Out with the Grateful Dead. So, from 5/13/72 in Lille, we are happy to play the opening trio of songs, Bertha, Black-Throated Wind, Chinatown Shuffle, Loser.

Next up, in continuing this week's trend of playing the show-openers, we have another taste of the Spring Tour of 1977. We hope you don't mind, but from what we hear through your always-welcome feedback, until every note of that magnificent tour is released, some of you will never get enough of this tour. I'm with you. From 5/17/77 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, we have the show-opening trio of tunes Minglewood Blues, Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo>El Paso. This Half-Step has one of those powerful endings typical of the song in 1977-1978. Great stuff.

While we're in the show-opening groove this week, we have the show-opening from 5/14/78 in Providence, RI. Last year here, we played that monster Let It Grow that ended the first set, but this opening sequence songs is every bit its equal: Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo, Cassidy, They Love Each Other.

Finally this week, to complete our format of playing show-openers from this week in the Grateful Dead's recorded history, we have the show-opening quartet of songs from 5/16/81 at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. From the cassette soundboard master, Feel Like A Stranger, Friend of the Devil, Me and My Uncle>Big River.

Be sure to check back next week for more great tunes. Feel free to write the email address below with questions and comments. It's always great to hear from you.

David Lemieux
vault [at]


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Joined: Oct 10 2007
how was I to know

I think I remember a dead hour w/ the kirkwood show cassettes suck thanx again dave . 1970 busy year, havin a high time since 3/6/70

Joined: May 12 2008
alabama getaway

I was at that Alabama show on 5/17/77. But when it was over, we were making a getaway back to New Orleans from Birmingham, not Tuscaloosa. It seems I have seen some other discussions about where this show was, or was not, and I can never figure out why -- it was in Birmingham. I remember it as a great show, even though the first set Sugaree was a shorty in the middle of a tour that produced some killer extended versions. Then again, I saw eight shows in '77, six at Winterland, and they were all great. What a year to really get into seeing the Grateful Dead live.

Joined: Sep 4 2007

I agree w gd adio as we all have a sweet audience of 5 16 81 , but now we can hear a nice SBD .

Thanks on behalf of many a fan

smallz's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
Lille free show

Phil gives a humorous version of this story in his book, Searching For The Sound :^)

Great week of selections once again! I like the show-opening sequence theme. Maybe we'll get a first set-closing/second set-opening/show-closing sequence theme next? (wink, wink)

Joined: May 12 2008
Nice to have Lille show

After reading about the band's "harrowing experience" due to the cancelled gig, it's nice to be able to hear the free concert.

Thanks for having these available for our listening pleasure. :)

Joined: Jul 20 2007
Nice sandwich

Bertha, Black-Throated Wind, Chinatown Shuffle, Loser.
Thanks David
cleaning and jamming

grdaed73's picture
Joined: Jun 5 2007
nice set of openers!

for some odd reason this does not show up on the home page, still showing last weeks tapers sec. but i found this under recent posts????
little ouch in BTW but sure sounds nice!

thx,david u make monday mornings easy

gdradio's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
Feel Like a Stranger!

thanks David... Great version from 81!
Streaming Grateful Dead and more


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