Road Trips Vol 1 No. 1
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Road Trips Vol 1 No. 1
Full Show RT 11/5/79
Full Show RT 11/6/79
Dick's Picks 5
Road Trips Vol 3 No. 1
Road Trips Vol 3 No. 4
Go To Nassau
Download Series 7
Dead Ahead
Dead Set
Dave's Picks Vol. 8
Dick's Picks 13
Road Trips Vol. 4 No. 4
Dick's Picks 32
Dick's Picks 6
Dick's Picks 21

Set Lists



Road Trips: Road Trips Volume 1 - Grateful Dead
Vol. 1 No. 1
10/25 - 11/10/79
 Fall ' 79
Order: GDM
030105GratefulDead iTunes downloads

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Road Trips Vol. 1 No. 1: Fall '79

We're glad to see the news of the Road Trips series of releases. The first one is a compilation. I have a handful of 1979 Brent shows and do enjoy them upon each listen so more commercially material released from this period is more than welcome. Overdue may be a better description. 

We've broken our commentary and review by venue. This tour, the Grateful Dead continue to break in new keyboard player Brent Mydland, whose first concert was on 4/22/79, and work on songs for their forthcoming album Go To Heaven

Ann Arbor, MI - 11/10/79
1. Alabama Getaway >
2. Promised Land
A high powered start to the disc. I love "Alabama Getaway" renditions from 1979 and the pairing with "The Promised Land" is perfect. Phil's bass line is great. These two tracks opened the show.

Philadelphia, PA - 11/6/79
3. Jack Straw >
4. Deal
The energy assault continues with superb versions of "Jack Straw" > "Deal" that closed the first set. Check out the vocal reference during "Jack Straw" to Clive Davis, an inference to their new music label, Arista. "We used to play for silver, now we play for Clive."

Buffalo, NY - 11/9/79
5. Dancing In The Street
6. Franklin’s Tower

7. Wharf Rat
8. I Need A Miracle
9. Bertha
10. Good Lovin’

To round out the first disc, from the 11/9/79, second set, we have the two opening tracks, followed by the post drums > space material. Of interest, the pre-drums portion of the set, after "Franklin's Tower" is included on the bonus disc for early orders. The "Dancing" up to "Drums" would have been nice to be together, but it is too long to fit. 

"Dancing in the Street" is solid with lots of musical interplay. The ending of the song is one of the trademarks that substantiates the adage, they're not the best at what they do, they're the only ones that do it. Because as they transition into "Franklin's Tower" they are really playing both songs at the same time. Hey this "Dancing" is a little like my "Franklin's," no this "Franklin's" is a little like my "Dancing." Then Jerry brings the "Franklin's Tower" riff front and center and solves the mystery of the birth of the Reese Peanut Butter Cups (for those who remember that commercial). According to Deadbase this was the second time this duo was paired (four total: 10/27/79, 11/9/79, 12/10/79, and 4/6/87). A superb, longer than average "Franklin's Tower" is sure to both satisfy and have you increase the volume.

A well played four song sequence to close both the 11/9/79 show as well as disc 1 of Road Trips Vol. 1 No. 1: Fall '79. When material this good is the least interesting of the release you know you have a terrific package.

Disc 2

New Haven, CT - 10/25/79
1. Shakedown Street 
A big "Shakedown Street." Phil leads the rhythm section with steady aggressive thumping with a young Brent feeling right at home. Topping Phil is Jerry; sounding quite good vocally in addition to his fine chops. The instrumental section really hits a great closing peak after slowing building the mood. One of the best commercially released versions of "Shakedown Street."

Ann Arbor, MI - 11/10/79
2. Passenger 
A solid energetic rendition. Brent isn't shy adding highlights throughout. The song offers some successful slide guitar workouts.

Philadelphia, PA - 11/6/79
3. Terrapin Station 

Jerry voice sounds sweet, too bad it would start to decline in a few years. During the first instrumental the groove is flowing with Jerry weaving in and out, and over and under the bands chops. This is a great composition. Jerry's riff that connects the first instrumental to the next section of the song is brilliant, and it is executed perfectly. 

4. Playing in the Band 
This is a 22 minute plus version in the style of 72 -74. I saw my first show in 1979, specifically 11/30 at the Stanley Theater in Pittsburgh, PA. Listening to Road Trips Vol. 1 brings back memories. It didn't take me long to appreciate their music. In fact, I liked it so much I wanted to go the next evenings performance at the same venue, but I was to young to be allowed to go to another concert the next evening. I remember loving the whole show. What really stuck out is how the band could all be playing different passages, make it work, and find their way back home. This "Playing in the Band" demonstrates that perfectly. The GD website has a fan posting with an excellent review of this song, and show, that I've posted below

Landover, MD - 11/8/79
5. Not Fade Away > 
6. Morning Dew
"Not" Fade Away is a solid, powerful, predictable version. The ending solo almost hints at "I Need a Miracle" before switches gears to "Morning Dew," which was last played on 04-15-78, 110 shows ago. After the first superb "Dew" instrumental the song takes a different mood and bounce,  I'm not sure if I'd heard a version quite like this before. The second instrumental is short, but sweet. It doesn't go through it's usual slow building up, rather, it is aggressive throughout. 

Overall some fantastic music on Road Trips Vol. 1. Brent demonstrates why he was selected for the chair of keyboards. 

The range of dates from the Fall 1979 tour include quite few concerts. The selections on this release certainly include some awesome moments. This is a period that would warrant additional releases. Neither the two Cape Cod, October 27, and 28, not the two Stanley Theater shows on 11/30 and 12/1 are represented. Hopefully because some or all of them are planned for future full show or series release. 

The packaging includes a great essay by Blair Jackson. Check out some of his books such as Garcia: An American Life, or Grateful Dead Gear

The strength of this material and this period in general is also why it was selected previously as Dick's Picks Vol. 5. I really like 1979 Grateful Dead, and the material on these discs is brilliant. If you can enjoy key pieces and do insist on complete shows there is much to enjoy on the debut of the series Road Trips
by Barry Small©
Grade A -

Order: GDM

Bonus Disc 

If you received the bonus disc, there is not a wasted moment in its 77 minutes. 

The key piece of the bonus disc is "He's Gone" and the ensuing extraordinary jam, not to mention, preceding it, a great "Estimated Prophet." This tour was a really solid period for "He's Gone" as they opened it up on numerous occasions; sometimes to jam, but other times sequencing into other songs like "The Other One" or "Truckin'." The December 1 show at the Stanley Theater is famous for its "Gloria" jam that segued out of "He's Gone." As you can hear from this version, the seeds were planted earlier. These three songs are taken from Buffalo, NY on 11/9/79. Piece this together with the regular release and you have the whole second set, less drums and space. 

Don't overlook the rest of the bonus material as there is nothing to skip over. It is sequenced nicely too. The first five songs are could very well be a second set leading up to drums. A separator with "Althea." Then the previously noted Buffalo material.

Bonus Disc [Total Time 77:21 ]
Uniondale, NY - 10/31/79
1. China Cat Sunflower
2. I Know You Rider
Landover, MD - 11/8/79
3. Lost Sailor
4. Saint Of Circumstance
5. Jam
Uniondale, NY - 10/31/79
6. Althea
Buffalo, NY - 11/9/79
7. Estimated Prophet
8. He’s Gone
9. Jam

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Track List

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Performances taken from the following shows, including bonus disc:
New Haven, CT - 10/25/79
Uniondale, NY - 10/31/79
Philadelphia, PA - 11/6/79
Landover, MD - 11/8/79
Buffalo, NY - 11/9/79
Ann Arbor, MI - 11/10/79

Disc 1 [Total Time 77:23 ]
1. ALABAMA GETAWAY (5:31) > (Garcia/Hunter)(11/10/79)
2. PROMISED LAND (4:44) (Berry) (11/10/79)
3. JACK STRAW (6:47) > (Weir/Hunter)(11/6/79)
4. DEAL (6:48)(Garcia/Hunter)(11/6/79)
5. DANCING IN THE STREET (13:10) > (Stevenson/Gaye/Hunter) (11/9/79)
6. FRANKLIN’S TOWER (12:04)(Garcia/Kreutzmann/Hunter)(11/9/79)
7. WHARF RAT (11:15) > (Garcia/Hunter)(11/9/79)
8. I NEED A MIRACLE (4:04) >(Weir/Barlow)(11/9/79)
9. BERTHA (5:52) > (Garcia/Hunter) Buffalo, NY (11/9/79)
10. GOOD LOVIN’ (7:08)(Resnick/Clark) (11/9/79)

Disc 2 [Total Time 78:58 ]
1. SHAKEDOWN STREET (15:32)(Garcia/Hunter)(10/25/79)
2. PASSENGER (6:04)(Lesh/Monk)(11/10/79)
3. TERRAPIN STATION (15:25) > (Garcia/Hunter)(11/6/79)
4. PLAYING IN THE BAND (22:17)(Weir/Hart/Hunter)(11/6/79)
5. NOT FADE AWAY (9:27) > (Petty/Hardin) (11/8/79)
6. MORNING DEW (10:13)(Dobson/Rose) (11/8/79)

Sold for a limited time with the initial release
Bonus Disc  
[Total Time 77:21 ]
1. CHINA CAT SUNFLOWER (7:29) > (Garcia/Hunter)(10/31/79)
2. I KNOW YOU RIDER (8:07)(trad., arr. Grateful Dead)(10/31/79)
3. LOST SAILOR (6:30) (Weir/Barlow)(11/8/79)
4. SAINT OF CIRCUMSTANCE (5:41) > (Weir/Barlow)(11/8/79)
5. JAM (7:20)(Grateful Dead)(11/8/79)
6. ALTHEA (9:42)(Garcia/Hunter)(10/31/79)
7. ESTIMATED PROPHET (13:16) >(Weir/Barlow)(11/9/79)
8. HE’S GONE (10:35) >(Garcia/Hunter)(11/9/79)
9. JAM (8:41)(Grateful Dead)(11/9/79)

Grateful Dead Download Series 8 review

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Grateful Dead

Jerry Garcia: Lead Guitar, Vocals
Mickey Hart: Drums
Bill Kreutzmann: Drums
Phil Lesh: Electric Bass, Vocals
Bob Weir: Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
Brent Mydland: Keyboards

Grateful Dead Download Series 8 review

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Released - November 2007
Producer - Grateful Dead
Compilation producer - David Lemieux, Blair Jackson
Recorded by - Dan Healy
Editing, mastering - Jeffrey Norman at Garage Audio Mastering
Cover art - Scott McDougall
Package design - Steve Vance
Photographs - Various
Liner notes - Blair Jackson 

The first release in a new series, Road Trips

Between Dec. 7 - 10, 2007, the Grateful Dead had a listening party. It featured the ability to stream the second disc of Road Trips Vol. 1

From the back cover
The compact discs herein have been digitally remastered directly from original soundboard cassettes. They are historical snapshots not modern professional recordings and may therefore exhibit occasional technical anomalies and unavoidable ravages of time.

From GD website
This two-disc set (plus a special Bonus Disc for a limited time only) was culled from the Dead’s blazing fall 1979 East Coast swing, when the band was just hitting its stride with new keyboardist Brent Mydland. You’ll find killer versions of “Dancing in the Street” > “Franklin’s Tower,” long exploratory jams on “Playing in the Band” and “Terrapin,” a rattle-your-brain “Shakedown,” and lots more, all pulled from the master tapes in the vault and expertly mastered in HDCD for maximum power and clarity by Jeffrey Norman. The Bonus Disc offers another hour-and-a-quarter of highlights from the tour.

The New Grateful Dead release series: Road Trips. 
From the GD website. 

" Here's the deal: We all loved the Dicks Picks series. Over the course of 36 amazing releases between 1993 and 2005, GD archivists Dick Latvala (R.I.P.) and David Lemieux continually blew our little minds plucking one righteous show after another from the vaults.

With Road Trips we're going to try something a little different. We want to plug in a few more pieces of the Grateful Dead puzzle by putting the spotlight on different tours and series of shows that have been neglected through the years. 

Also, every Road Trips release will come with a beautifully designed booklet containing an essay about how the music on the discs fits into the Dead's long history, plus many rare and never-before-seen photographs." 

My Favorite Show Of All Time
On June 27th, 2007 Alpine7784 said:
Strong words, I know. I've listened to a lot of shows, and I keep coming back to this one over and over again. The fall of 1979 was a very hot time for The Boys, and I strongly feel this has to do with the addition of Brent. By the time the fall of '79 came around, he'd been in the band for a little bit and had started adding lots of new voices with the B3, synth and strong piano playing. As a result, everybody else in the band became rejuvenated and the playing is fresh. The Fall 1979 tour in October & November features some of the most cerebral music I've personally ever heard.

While the first set has some memorable moments indeed (Including Jerry enunciating ev-er-y syl-a-ble dur-ing Tenn-e-ssee- Jed, and a raucous Jack Straw to close), the REAL magic is the second set. Terrapin Station is slow, but not lethargic. It is deliberate, like a lazy river; flowing, with purpose, but not in a hurry. Jerry's leads are sinuous, Brent's comping is exceptional, and Phil is dropping bombs left and right. After the final lick, you hear Bob start to count for the next song, and you hear Jerry say, "Do it to me!"

Then, the epic: Playin' In The Band. Strong tempo, Bob's voice in great shape, Brent's harmonies are right on. After the final verse, Brent immediately seizes the lead right out of the chute. Playing lines on the B3, Brent weaves in and out of the melody suggested by all the string players. After a minute or two, Jerry comes in, Brent switches to a Rhodes-style piano voice, and Bob starts playing Chords From Hell. The drummers are the fascinating thing here; while everybody continues to vamp and solo in 4/4 time, the drummers easily slide into The Eleven. The match is exquisite.

The jam that follows is the singular reason why I love this band. Playing spontaneous composition, really reaching for it, this jam is balls-out cerebral, ethereal, and sublime. Jerry and Brent trading leads, Bob comping and Phil suggesting yet another melodic line with his bass, all come together as one. The sum is truly greater than the individuals. Crescendos build, then drop, then regroup and build again. Wave upon wave of intensity, fresh ideas popping out from every twist and turn. This culminates with Brent on clavinet, Phil dropping bomb after bomb, and they all reach the zenith of musical energy. Then, everybody just STOPS PLAYING. You're left hanging there, feeling like Wiley Coyote after going over the cliff, just suspended in mid-air. It is FANTASTIC.

The peak-and-valley pattern is repeated over and over here, until Brent slides into some "outside" keyboard runs, leading to the downward spiral into weirdness. This eventually culminates with Phil inducing feedback from his bass, Bob and Brent making bird chirps, and Jerry playing fast arpeggios. Enter Drums.

Nothing wimpy here...big, fat bass drums and guiros, eventually giving way to tar and gongs. As Billy starts playing the gongs, Mickey screams, "Yeah man, keep going!" Mickey keeps holding the tar to the microphone, causing it to feed back. It sounds like outtakes from the Apocalypse Now sessions.

Space is nice and weird, with Phil feedback and Jerry's distorted noodling. Then, a quick slide into Black Peter. Slow, intense, and perfect. Exceptionally soulful, with vocals that are right on. Brent's B3 playing makes you feel like you're at a psychedelic church revival.

Good Lovin' rocks. High energy, lots of tight soloing, and the Bobby scream in the last chorus is amazing.

End it all with a hard, tight rendition of US Blues. Thus ends one of the best Grateful Dead sets I've ever heard.

I've probably listened to this set well over a thousand times over the last 20-plus years, and I keep going back to it over and over again. It induces tears and goose bumps in me every single time. This show is one for the ages, and I hope you find it as inspiring and fulfilling as I do.

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