find the best versions of grateful dead songs

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No cholesterol.



Playin' In The Band
April 13, 1971
Catholic Youth Center

Lesh's rather electric bass drives the train. They're still learning the song, but still bring some heat & drama - even without the jam.
Cumberland Blues
Feb. 19, 1971
Capitol Theater

Stompin' matrix and Kreutzmann's debut as a free man!
Not Fade Away
June 23, 1976
Tower Theatre

A fucking great NFA with killer crowd support. Sometimes I love AUDs. & Garcia: looking for trouble. Aluminum Style.
July 22, 1972
Paramount Northwest Theatre

Runs on Kreutzmann adrenaline - set cruise control for serene.
Jan. 24, 1971
Seattle Center Arena

Easily overlooked show - the Truckin' opener is a giant tidal wave red carpet.


China Cat Sunflower -> I Know You Rider
April 7, 1972
Wembley Empire Pool

Ry-krispy! Not sure how this didn't move some people, but people's people. Hi-Octane! Almost said Hi-Rocktane, which would have been unfortunate.
The Other One
April 5, 1971
Manhattan Center

Partial to 1971 Other Ones as I am, I endorse this version as merely another insane stand-out. Top-sleeve shit.
China Cat Sunflower
Feb. 23, 1968
Kings Beach Bowl

No other band has ever sounded like this. Crazy. Great segue.
Dark Star
Feb. 23, 1968
Kings Beach Bowl

Tight and exciting. Garcia makes the big leap at around this time. Love the space in the song, too. Underplayed.
China Cat Sunflower -> I Know You Rider
May 12, 1981
Veterans' Memorial Coliseum

Garcia spinning webs. C>R were a touch fast at this time, but this maintains the swing (which speed can eviscerate). 100% entertainment. Back to Garcia spinning webs: he was so fluid and fluent at this time. Weaving together years of fandom and playing to form his own language of, yes, the guitar. 12√2, right?