Baltimore 72....wow. I remember borrowing my parent's VW and driving up with my friend Mark...we were juniors in HS. Nothing had prepared me for the madness, the sheer energy. I'd never seen people reacting to the music at a concert in quite this way and it never left me.
Then, the last, RFK in 94 during horrendous thunder storms, whick of course only added to the zanyness. Our favorite place to sit in RFK was typically available - upper deck, first row, directly back from the stage which normally sat where 2nd base WOULD have been if DC had a baseball team then! Shortly after we moved to Omaha, our next chance to see the band was going to be St. Louis in summer of 95. That turned out to be a disaster - remember the gate crashers and the tragedy that followed? We decided not to go since our daughter was only 2 and it would have been an 8 hour road trip, not fun for the little one.
Seattle Center Arena -1970 (I think) TheGrateful Dead, New Riders of the Purple Sage and Ian & Sylvia, Garcia played steel for I & S and NRPS. I was 15 years old and had been into
it since the Beatles and the Stones in 64 through Hendrix, The Doors, Cream etc. etc.and
any other variations of rock I could get my head around but this was "different". I felt like I witnessed musical telepathy and was in on it (and I was straight this time). I left that hall and hitchhiked home with a musical buzz that I still carry today. It all seemed to imply possibilities that were not clear to me before that. I've seen them 7 or 8 times in the years since- but none of those shows seemed to have the total connectedness that that one had for me. But just to know that that exists and lies within the realm of possibility will leave me
forever "Grateful" :)
I had seen a couple of shows before but this was my first cosmic adventure with the band and I was sold!!! I was living in nearby Ithaca so the next morning I walked to the corner, stuck out my thumb and began hitchhiking to Hershey, Pa then on to Merriweather Post and so on and so on for another hundred or so shows for the next ten years. Along the way there were more magical moements but there's something always very special about the first time....
The last note of Phil's roll into The Other One on 10/27/79 simply overwhelmed the cosmos. It seemed to go and on - universes were born, flourished, and died before that note failed. Every time I listen to the show I can still hear vestiges of that note, and what it caused.
i started following the dead in 1968 from 68 to 72 they were everything to me it wasn't just a show but an entire experience saw the dead around 70 times quite often every nite of the stand usually at the FILLMORE EAST memorable shows 1970 Feb. with ALLMAN BROS and the following May swows all tripped out and the shows started at midnight and a few times when we left it was morning with the sun out. when pig died a lot of me died too. tc was a vital part of that 68-69 tripping experience my business card says "GET ON THE BUS" which is right from THE OTHER had real long hair than am now bald oh well still listen to the dead all the time but my last show was 1980 at the BEACON in NY finally attended many dead benefit shows for the HELLS" ANGELS" at a theatre called THE ANDERSON THEATRE very wierd don't live in past but miss those years
Weren't all the shows life changing? I would definitely say yes! I would bet that from each and every show I attended, there was something that happened to me that caused me to look at a situation in different way. I can't pinpont any show that I would call life changing. But, the level of acceptance I felt from other Dead fans at every show was completely overwhelming to me. That is what I would call life changing. No matter who you are or where you are from, you are home at a show.
I had seen the Dead a couple times before but never really considered myself a "Deadhead"--just someone who appreciated the band and the scene. I went to Alpine Valley in 1988 with several buddies and had one of the best four days of my life. The shows were aweseome, the scene was incredible--just fantastic. The steal your face was stamped on my brain from that day forward. I started getting bootlegs, buying their studio albums, and voraciously listened to the Dead for years following.
there where at least a few......they weren't necessarily truly life changing...but for those few moments life couldn't have been better.
hartford 5-28-77 my first
the first night of cape cod 10-27-79
hartford "earthquake" 1982
Augusta,ME the pair of nights Fall 1984
they are truly a band beyond description.........
*** Englishtown- -September of 1977- -why this event was life changing cant even be put into words
For me it's not so much entire shows that stick out in my mind as life-changing, but moments... you know the kind, the ones that etch their beauty and grace into your soul so deeply, you never really get over it...
...The first time I heard Jerry sing Stella Blue...
...a stellar Morning Dew at The Spectrum the day before Easter (and I feel really stupid but I'm blanking on the year) where, totally straight, my soul literally flew overhead and danced, and my God was there...
...a JGB show at Eel River in CA, where it was so hot people sat and laid down in the river, and I walked right up to the makeshift stage and sat at Jerry's feet all afternoon, and one of the beverage ladies brought me cold lemonade and salt packets so I wouldn't get dehydrated (maybe none of that is uncommon, but on the East Coast it was!) and during the acoustic set Jerry played the "Morning Star" song (not sure if that's the title, sorry) and I cried, and the whole day he kept looking down at me like he couldn't quite figure out why I wanted to be there watching HIM... very humble, and a little bemused. Or maybe the sun was just in his eyes. But either way, it was amazing.
...an Iko Iko when my feet filled with such joy my heart nearly exploded (in a good way)...
...every single time I ever had the privilege of hearing "Peggy-O" from my first show in 1980 until Jerry left us. Something about the way he sings it, something about the lyrics... I don't know. But if I ever had to pick one song... that would be the one.
"Sometimes the songs that we hear are just songs of our own."