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Fillmore Auditorium - December 10, 1965
December 10, 1965
Mime Troupe Benefit - first show as "The Grateful Dead" - also: Jefferson Airplane; The Great Sciety; John Handy Quintet; The Mystery Trend; The Gentlemen's Band
Attendees of this show
I went to hear John Handy. My friends wanted to see the Airplaine. The bonus, for me, life changing beyond my imagination was the Dead. Where are those days, when it was music that mattered?
The Grateful Dead!
The birthday of both the Grateful Dead and me. Unfortunately I missed the concert that day. Oh well.
The best I can remember is that we came over on a bus from the California Hall where there was another show going on, (maybe it was the Charlatans), to see the Airplane and climbed the stairs to the Fillmore to find the Dead on stage, (who I was unaware of at that time, now knowing of course why, that that was the first, maybe second night, depending upon whose telling the story, that they ever played as the Grateful Dead), walking their guitars into their speakers and piercing the Fillmore with feed back like I had never heard. It was not painful like the feedback, (essentially sonic mistakes), of other bands but "musical" in it's own way. They were, particularly Jerry and Pigpen dark and hairy guys, kind of scary even. They had control of this sound they were evoking and then slid it back into a sound we understood as music, melody, harmony, time change etc. I remember now how vividly I was taken and got on a second "bus" in short order. Nearly everyone was very high in the hall that night and later at the side bar drinking some water I spoke for a moment about that which I cannot remember now to Jerry, beginning a casual conversation which continued very occasionally around the halls and clubs over the next few years. I feel wonderful soft tears at the memories and miss the live band deeply.
My band, the Vipers, actually opened the show.
We weren't on the poster or the newspaper ad, but neither were the Dead.
Ralph Gleason still referred to them as the Warlocks in his review.
The "VIPs" was his misreading of our name, the Vipers.
I attended the Big Beat Acid Test the next night, where the Dead also played. A pretty big weekend for a 21 year old, soon to be a Stanford drop-out.