find the best versions of grateful dead songs

please login or register.


90s aficionado



March 7, 1981
Cole Field House

From a kind of under the radar show: Truckin out of space winds down into a spacey jam, atypical of the period.
Cryptical Envelopment
Sept. 3, 1985
Starlight Theater

Really, none of these '85 versions are all that great (except as novelties), but this one is probably the strongest. JG gets all the words right!
Oct. 19, 1994
Madison Square Garden

Okay, so maybe Garcia drops some words (& even verses) here and there...it gives him an opportunity for an extra long solo, which winds around nicely.
Dec. 6, 1980
Mill Valley Recreation Center

With the small crowd you can actually hear the band sing!
Crazy Fingers
Sept. 7, 1985
Red Rocks Amphitheatre

Classic version. Segues into Samson.


Dancin' in the Streets
Oct. 18, 1984
Meadowlands Arena

Later day version that manages to capture some of the old (pre-69) style of the song.
New Potato Caboose
June 8, 1969
Fillmore West

After an awkward transition from China Cat, this version really takes off, and the ending climax is one of the strongest.
Help On The Way > Slipknot > Franklin's Tower
Sept. 19, 1990
Madison Square Garden

Franklin's is strong enough: it sounds like it's taking this new configuration some time to work out what goes where, as it were. But the real meat of this is the Help> Slip, where JG quite literally tears it up: he's all over the place, using the whole of his guitar pallet and interacting with BH in the highest degree.
Not Fade Away
Sept. 3, 1977
Raceway Park

Very insistent version: the transition out of He's Gone is almost too slow (but not quite), and then this one just keeps coming.
Looks Like Rain
Feb. 3, 1978
Dane County Coliseum

Incredibly strong version, especially JG's guitar during the verses. Doesn't hurt that there's the great DP 18 version available.