Grateful Dead

Family Dog at the Great Highway, San Francisco, CA 4/18/70 - SOLD OUT

Is it the Grateful Dead? Well, in name, no, but in music and personnel, heck yes! We’re very pleased to present a rare, unknown recording of the Grateful Dead from April 18, 1970, at the Family Dog in San Francisco, a show that was played entirely acoustically. Once a Record Store Day-only vinyl release, we have made this available as a CD exclusively on

So, what’s the deal with this show, and this recording? In May, 2013, Mountain Girl called to say she had a few reels of Grateful Dead music and wanted to return them. They turned out to be from 1970 and 1971. Jeffrey Norman quickly backed them up, and we were able to check them out. Sure enough, this was music we’d never heard before, nor knew it even existed. One of the coolest things in this small stash was the 4/18/70 tape. We knew the Grateful Dead shared the bill this night with Charlie Musselwhite, and the NRPS, but they billed themselves as Mickey Hart and His Heartbeats, and Bobby Ace and His Cards From the Bottom Of The Deck. What the tape reveals is that they played just one set, an 80 minute acoustic opus featuring some expected stuff from the era, plus some shockers.

Product Details

Street Date: November 29, 2013
Complete 80-minute acoustic show which includes six tracks of Pigpen's solo with acoustic guitar.
Limited edition, available while quantities last. exclusive

David Lemieux On Family Dog at the Great Highway


Disc 1
1 I Know You Rider (Fades in) [4:53]
2 Don't Ease Me In [3:26]
3 Silver Threads And Golden Needles [5:10]
4 Friend Of The Devil [4:24]
5 Deep Elem Blues [5:45]
6 Wake Up Little Susie> [2:53]
7 Candyman [5:42]
8 Cumberland Blues [5:48]
9 New Speedway Boogie [8:18]
10 Me And My Uncle [4:02]
11 Mama Tried [3:23]
12 Katie Mae (Incomplete) [1:26]
13 Ain't It Crazy (The Rub) (Fades in) [1:59]]
14 Roberta [3:34]
15 Bring Me My Shotgun [4:34]
16 The Mighty Flood> [4:05]
17 Black Snake [3:13]

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Joined: Nov 2 2010
Jerry's Guitars

Check this history list of jerry's equipment

Enjoy :)

Joined: Oct 2 2009
screw everybody who hates the sound

i don't even know what to say. your age speaks volumes. meaning you are less than 43.

Joined: Oct 2 2009
sounds good to me...

goddamn. forget the folks who think this sounds bad. it sounds great, wow and flutter included. if i had taped this 43 years ago, people would be paying me copious amounts of $ for a copy. thanks dave lemieux, i'm really happy.

Joined: Jun 4 2007
Jerry's guitar

Anyone know which guitar Jerry was using at this concert? He achieves a certain twang in the space just before the second 'I gotta get down' in Cumberland that I find very appealing. In fact, his electric tone throughout the song is very good. It's probably the same guitar he used on Workingman's I bet. It almost sounds like a single pickup like a Danelectro or Tele. I'm going to pull out my Grateful Dead Gear (by Blair Jackson, a great gift idea by the way) to see if maybe I can glean the answer there.
-edit- Checked the book, and a couple months earlier from this concert, at the same venue, he is pictured using a sunburst Strat.

stillwaters's picture
Joined: Aug 30 2012
To those complaining about the audio quality of "Family Dog"

You really need to read the disclaimer in Dick's Pick's: "This is a snapshot of history, not a modern professional recording."

Be grateful we have it at all!

Underthevolcano's picture
Joined: Feb 6 2008
to me

the audio is acceptable, esp. in light of the age and circumstances-I think as fans we are very lucky that this was recorded at all and withstood the vagaries and ravages of time and fate. It is another great snapshot of an era long gone and a young bunch of chuckleheads having some good times at the hometown gathering place. I think the "busting" going on is a hoot and happy it wasn't edited out. I say-THANKS for putting this one out.

JeffGodoy's picture
Joined: Nov 2 2010
Any chance for iTunes?

Any chance this will make it to iTunes or HDTracks? It would really be nice to get a download version, CD are a pain to convert for those of us the live in the digital world. Sounds like a great rare set.

One Man's picture
Joined: May 17 2011

Reminder: Animals on Earth, including humans, listen with their ears (the two small holes on either side of the head). The ears tell us this recording is rife with tape speed issues (flutter), distortion and a badly unbalanced mix of instrument levels. Some people also hear excessive tape hiss, but most Deadheads listen right past that because they've tolerated much worse. The brain may ignore all of the above as it attempts to glean pleasure from the listening experience. There is a certain amount of enjoyment to be had here, but you can't say it sounds "good" from an audio quality perspective. Compare to Bear's Choice if you want a live-to-2-track reference.

Joined: Dec 5 2013
Wow! Some folks are just spoiled....

I'm listening to this CD for the first time. Maybe I'm getting old and my hearing isn't so good anymore....but it sounds just fine to me. I've got thousands of Dead CD's, some sound better, some sound worse. This show is a treat, the setlist is unusual, the sound is fine, listening on Bose speakers...rare new Pigpen...what's to complain about. If you don't like the quality go listen to some crisp new Miley Cyrus. Gee whiz!!!!!!!'s picture
Joined: Aug 6 2013

This is a GREAT release. So what if the sound isn't perfect. The show is unusual and fun. Come on now.....

kevjones's picture
Joined: Apr 28 2009
To all the grumps and curmudgeons.

Just got this release today. It is not sonicly perfect, but it has a very warm and fuzzy vibe to it. We would be grateful for something like this 20 years ago. Maybe I'm biased, because 1970 is my favorite year of Dead music. A big thanks to David, Mountain Girl and the family of Bear for bestowing us with this great gift for Christmas. Warm and fuzzy regards and Merry Christmas.

Get it before it's GONE.

frunobulax's picture
Joined: Jun 13 2007

Truly awful sound quality, even if it's a rare, cool performance. They should know better than to release something that sounds this bad, when there's so many good sounding performances in the vault. Unless you are a completist, save your money. I don't think I've ever regretted buying a release from GDM until yesterday, when I received this piece of crap in the mail.

Joined: Oct 13 2008

RINO NOW RIPPING US OFF?????????????????????????????????????

mbarilla's picture
Joined: Aug 8 2013
Received my order today

Have listened to the first few and noticed the audio is not the best quality. Guess recently we have been spoiled with Dave's P audio and SSDD plus others May 77.

The case that holds the cd is cracked and also noticed the same thing when I got Rare Things & Oddities. Not so thrilled about that, so hopefully next time my shipping fee will be waived or at least put a flat rate on orders. I ordered 5 different shows from and would have ordered more but shipping co$t was ridiculous.

Can't wait to hear Fall 79' road trips , Summer 71' roads trips with Pigpen and a Dark Star. Fillmore West 69' compilation, and also 5-25-72 with the 3 Garcia tracks in a row. I was also sad to find out the Rotterdam 72' show is sold out. Paris was my next choice. The main reason I choose May 25 show is because it is not on Europe 72 vol 1 or 2 and Steppin' Out 72'.

Joined: Jul 5 2009
Historically Noteworthy, Recording Quality Fair/Poor

The cuts don't bother me. Its really the constant flutter and high hiss. The Pig tunes surprisingly have the best balanced mix (probably helps that its only solo guitar/vocal).

I get the toss up between releasing this or not. Recently discovered. Very early recording of "Dont Ease", Pig rarities on the last four tunes. A very early acoustic show considering how much of their format it would become later on that year.

Even for 17$ for the CD I feel like this is for completists (perhaps like myself) only. Bear's Choice, the Road Trips (5.15.70) release have much better sound quality and give a similar perspective of this time period of Dead.

Obviously we all wish there was more quality recordings from this quintessential period of Dead History. Sound anomalies may turn off even some of the more patient listeners.

timwsiy's picture
Joined: Nov 4 2013
Vinyl in Walla Walla, WA

As of Sunday 12/1, there was still a copy or two at Hot Poop in Walla Walla, WA.

Joined: Jan 12 2009
Vinyl in Toronto

Sunrise Records at 336 Yonge St. in Toronto had a full rack late yesterday afternoon. It was more expensive that what I paid at Soundscapes but the copies are there & they probably do mail-order.

Joined: Apr 10 2008
Underground Sounds in Louisville, KY

Walked in at 7pm yesterday to see what was leftover with absolutely no expectations. They had at left two copies left; I got one. Give them a call this morning. They probably still have it, and they would probably work out shipping.

(502) 485-0174

Frontrow Joe's picture
Joined: Jun 2 2009
Reckless records in Chicago

Reckless records in Chicago had several copies when I was there this morning. I was able to snag one. Call them to see if they still have them. It was only $35 too.


Joined: Jun 4 2007


shwack's picture
Joined: Apr 12 2008
Boo Hoo

Hey All,
Nothin' Doing at my Local Record Shop on this release ON VINYL. All Sold Out with what little stock they were given to hype Record Store Day Black Friday.
Barter/Trade: I have a SEALED spare copy of Dave's Picks VOL.7 (4/24/78-Normal Ill.) to trade straight up for your SEALED VINYL copy of Family Dog San Francisco 4/18/70.
Please DO let this deal go down...

shwack in nh

mbarilla's picture
Joined: Aug 8 2013
Cheers to Record Store Day

I plan on getting a copy if available at my local store. I saw an online pic of the store shelf they had copies available and also Winterland 71'. I just wish they had thatEurope 72 Dark Star from Paris. I bought Sunshine daydream vinyl at same store and double sided poster was included. Can't wait for tomorrow morning. From what I read use 3D glasses to view album cover art

Sunshine-Daydream's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007
180 gram Vinyl Version Available

If you are in Chicago area and want to get this album on limited edition 180 gram vinyl, check out our shop Sunshine Daydream Hippie Shop on Record Store Day Black Friday. We are located in NW suburban Lake Zurich, and will have limited quantities of this release as well as other RSD releases coming out that day. In addition, there will be a store wide sale going on all weekend in our hippie shop.

Google Map to Sunshine Daydream

Sunshine Daydream Facebook Page

One Man's picture
Joined: May 17 2011
Audio Quality

Blewin, if you scroll back a few you will see my opinion on sound quality of this release. Of course, many folks will think the rarity of the recording and event itself will offset a serious lack of fidelity, and I can understand that. I was hoping for much better.

Joined: Apr 10 2008
Just noticed...

The second pressing of "Rare Cuts and Oddities" is actually limited and less than 1000 copies left. I didn't realize it would be a limited run. Based on that, I assume this cd will also end up a limited run, eventually. Better get it while you can!

Joined: Jun 14 2007
sound quality

There are a lot of Titles and Tracks I've never heard. I am surprised by the comments to the effect this is the same as the other great accoustic releases already out there.It seems to me that the differences between versions should be most apparent to those who listen to the music most often. They should be perceiving the most subtled nuanced changes and differences. There were similar remarks about the Who Live At Leeds and the newly released show the next day. If you listened to the Live at Leeds show many times, and presumably you have, if you buy the show from the next day, you should hear a very different show, despite the similarity in the setlists. I'm curious what others think.

While we are talking sound quality, has anyone downloaded American Beauty or any other Hi Res from HD tracks. I am wondering if the differences are audible. Assume nice stereo listened to with 60 year old ears with some loss of acuity from exposure to loud music.


Joined: Nov 12 2007
You can call this release

You can call this release "Dave's Picks Volume 8.5"

Too bad the Winterland 1971 album wasn't released on CD. Hopefully someday when it's re-released, a CD version will come out.

Underthevolcano's picture
Joined: Feb 6 2008
not just the music...

but the bustin of Bear by mostly Weir about the monitor level or lack thereof-this is a priceless snapshot into the early days before the scene got too big, costly, unruly and big time and dare we say it-professional( for the Dead)or more jaded.

stevie c's picture
Joined: Mar 13 2009
acoustic set

what an unexpected pleasure to get this so quickly ... i guess the prankster is coming out for many.!. as we all fill out our collections we can share our preferences and hi and low points and remember ,, to each his/her own. i'm glad we are all riding along together ;;; what a trip !

The Weve's picture
Joined: Feb 16 2010
I Love it too.

Yes this is enjoyable for a 2013 find. But it's not different from Bears Choice (73)& remastered (2003)or Dicks Picks Vol-08 (97).
Both great acoustic Dead recordings.

Joined: Jun 19 2013
I Love it!

To start with, this is not up to the audio quality we are use to. That being said, I love this!
It is so different from anything else they have released. Keep the variety coming, this is what makes being a fan fun, you never know what gem will come next. Bring on Dave's 2014!

Joined: Apr 23 2008
@ Matchewy /@ Oxford

Thanx for the calming words and you are right I'm a serious ebayer (collecting now is FZ vinyl from everywhere) and a relatively short time after ltd ed are sold out the price stabilizes. Not only that except for some specials like the bonus discs and your Fillmore mention the prices usually don't go to high. Oxford It ain't whining when for the 1st time I can remember that a release was not announced on the home page of the website, you have to dig through the Almanac, and in case you haven't noticed not everyone gets e-mails at the same time

One Man's picture
Joined: May 17 2011
Great on Paper

Do people really like this release? The audio quality is decidedly lo-fidelity. I'm sure the tape hiss has been reduced, but nothing has been done about the wow-and-flutter (which is a crime since that is what Plangent is supposed to do and it wasn't even used) and the distortion can't be cured. The instrument balance is a mess. Sure, it's great to hear Pig solo, playing some unexpected songs. But if you want to use the word "over-rated", save it for this one.

Roland Bruynesteyn's picture
Joined: Aug 7 2008
arrived in the netherlands

Just short of 2 weeks before the 'release date'. Nice addition to the collection.

Just sit back and reflect, with a glass of red wine: "What a terrific year this has been, being a dead head / GD collector..."

DaPs 5-8, ranging from stunning(6) to unexpected pleasure (7), and from unbelievable playing and sound (8) to another edition from a great era (5)

May 1977, what can one say other than that it is not Barton Hall

SSDD, somewhat overhyped perhaps, but another great '72 concert, with the added benefit of video, and now

MH&HB plus BA&HCFTBOTD, great acoustic dead. You can HEAR that they intend to stick to the acoustic format (probably brought no electric gear with them anyway), sounding relaxed and comfortable, and nicely sharing vocal duties.

Bring on 2014!

Joined: Feb 5 2008

Ordered this a few days ago and can't wait for it to arrive!

I was a little surprised to see the complete setlist in my handy copy of Dead Base V(which has served me faithfully since 1991!).

I suppose some of those shockers mentioned in the item description weren't really shockers after all.

Joined: Apr 10 2008

Don't worry at all, my man. As you can see, the order button is alive and well. The "Sold Out" message was a transient thing when this item fist started shipping early. As far as anyone can tell, the CD version is not limited. Of course that comes with the caveat of previous releases not listed as limited actually being limited.

Many of the non-limited releases come and go in availability. When I got around to ordering "To Terrapin", it was sold out. Folk had it listed on Amazon for $50 or more. But, I was patient, and my patience was rewarded when Rhino pressed more and I paid $20 right here on this sight. We all need to remember that although affiliated with WB, Rhino is technically an independent label. They don't seem to stock the warehouse full of constant supply of Dead releases that sell big when first released, then sit rather dormant. I think this is the reason behind limited editions now; the demand fades quick, and they don't want to be stuck with extras. The good thing is these releases seem to hit a plateau in aftermarket price, so there is no harm in being patient if something becomes unavailable. Non-limited items often become available again, and limited items sometimes dip in price. I haven't seen any real increase in aftermarket for the Fillmore box in years, for example.

Bottom line: everybody relax, Family Dog is available for now. If you can't get something now, save your scratch and you will surely be able to get it later. We can all save our hysteria for Black Friday RSD!

Joined: Apr 23 2008

Like others I received notice of this only a couple of days ago. As with all releases I bought it right away. Pre release fine OK. Then I go to the comments and see people are already getting them and it's sold out ! WTF. I know I'm not the only person who has loyally bought everything who feels we should at least get an equal chance no hidden sales etc. Ltd Ed I get it but everyone gets a chance it's not hidden but this not fair. As for the Vinyl I'm used to ebay for that we don't all get 2 days off at thanksgiving

Joined: Dec 17 2011
It came today..

I got one on eBay last week for 30 bucks as a BIN. WOW!!!!! I'm very impatient and got rather upset when it sold out last week, I just had have one, so I went to eBay and got the only one being offered as a "buy it now", there have only been 5 offered for sale since last Tuesday. I'm glad I couldn't wait this is INCREDIBLE. A nice mellow set of tunes. I thought SSDD would be my highlight release of the year this one easily earns that honor. I always doubted the existence of these shows but to have one in my hand removes all doubt & has me wondering what other tapes got returned to MG? Talk about saving the BEST FOR LAST!!!! What will 2014 bring & let's not talk about 2015 not only will I turn 50 so will the good ole' Grateful Dead. Now off to see Phil Lesh at the Tower. I will be listening to this on the way. HAPPY TUESDAY, DEADLAND!!!!

Joined: Jun 4 2007
born cross-eyed....

.....the cover is 3D when you view through 3D glasses! Not so much the skull man himself, but the spade he's inside of & the roving line that separates the various mini-sections of the design jump out from those sections (and glow) in a psychedelic stuff. Note: you need the classic red & blue 3D glasses. The grey-lens post-modern ones don't work.

What a special treat this is! I'm only at Friend of the Devil as I type, going to sit back down on the couch with purring cat and continue listening..... (Just a perfect Saturday afternoon thing to do.)

Mustin, I really hope your Dave's 8 arrives soon (today?)--you're gonna love it.

mato1949's picture
Joined: Jun 6 2007
Just got 1970 Family Dog

Arrived in the mail today. Here's the problem as I see it. The USPS tracker still shows it as sitting in the Black Hole of Hebron KY. That is what causes so much frustration. USPS and UPS do not update their sites in a timely fashion. It is not's problem, it is just something to keep in mind when we are feeling twisted over waiting for a release. Have a Real Grateful Day!!!

Joined: Aug 27 2008
Great disc!

The day after I ordered this disc, I got a shipping notice. I thought that was somewhat odd, a couple of weeks early, it must be a mistake. No mistake at all, I got the disc on Thursday, after playing it 4 times, I love this show. A bit more looser than I would expect, but then the actual show of 4/18/70 was billed as Mickey And His Hartbeats / Bobby Ace And His Cards From The Bottom Of The Deck, so the Dead were much more freer to do what they wanted.
This release is advertised as an 80 minute show, this disc plays 72:37, 5 minutes short by my standards. It's the contents that count, and they're great! I especially love the Pigpen songs.

Is it my eyes or a bad printing of the cover?
I don't have a pair of 3-D glasses, but this looks like 3-D glassed would enhance the cover art.

Joined: May 4 2009

Interesting backstory here ( on the Family Dog shows 4/18 was drawn from.

Joined: Oct 23 2008
Family Dog 4/18/70

I just ordered indication of this being limited or sold-out....Where are folks seeing this info?
Can't wait to have my own listening party...You are all invited, of course!!

Joined: May 3 2012
70 acoustic dead

Got mine today. good mellow stuff. Was wondering if anybody had lossless files of road trips 3.3 that they could send my way... I'd be very grateful

mustin321's picture
Joined: Aug 12 2011

I did get a shipping notice first, which I thought was a mistake too. I think there may be a little more tape hiss on this, compared to RT and DP8, but not much. It sounds good enough to me. Id almost be happy with just the 6 Pigpen songs.

Joined: Apr 10 2008

If you received a shipping notice, there should be a tracking number. Use USPS tracking to track it. I received mine, and they are shipping early.

It is good; I think on par with DP's 8. In terms of sonic quality, definitely.

Joined: Nov 7 2013
Family Dog ! Thanks Bear and Mt. Girl !!!

The Speedway on this Great Highway is KILLER !!! Jerry's vocals are great throughout. The Pigpen set is priceless . Thank you folks this is really a rare treat.
The cover art on this CD package is Beautiful. If you put it on a nice heavy, white T-shirt I'll buy Three. Lets see more merch with a classic look Family Dog, Mouse, Griffin, etc... We will buy it.
Please, Make the shirt. Really.

Joined: Aug 27 2008

Mustin321, Did you get a shipping statement first? I got one the other day and think it's a mistake, in that it's too early. If I get the disc in the mail this week or next week I will be very suprised and very happy.
Did you listen to it yet? Is it on par with disc 1 of Dick's Picks 8 (5/2/70) and Road Trips 3.3 (5/15/70)?

Joined: Apr 10 2008
Received mine...

Went back to the River City for Black Crowes at the Louisville Palace last night, swung by the ol' home place and picked up my DaP8 and Family Dog that arrived this week.

Crowes show was pretty good, Jackie Greene on lead. Cover of "Torn and Frayed" made my day, along with the "Good Morning Captain" show opener.

Family Dog sounds great; rough and raw, stage banter worth price of admission. Got through "Deep Elem". I am really digging the vibe.

mustin321's picture
Joined: Aug 12 2011
I got mine

in the mail yesterday...way earlier than I expected...still waiting on DaP8

Added to Cart Family Dog at the Great Highway, San Francisco, CA 4/18/70
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