This is one concert that the Dick’s Pick series could have released but didn’t. Listen to it now before they charge you for it, it is available free on the Internet Archive. This is part of the great spring tour which produced so many memorable Scarlet Begonia –> Fire On the Mountain. He it appears in the unusual position as the first set closer. Keith Godchaux was playing the Hammond B-3 organ for much of the concert that night which contributes to the unique sound of this concert. Row Jimmy in the first set was a stellar performance. Jerry and Donna’s voices are tightly intertwined, Keith is adding just the right minimalists organ and Phil sounds great playing notes so low they don’t sound possible on an electric bass. Jerry and Bob are both on slide guitar and Jerry’s heartbreakingly beautiful sole is a gift. Twelve minutes and 24 seconds of intimacy. The whole concert is well miked and the bass performance of the recordings are excellent. The second set starts with Estimated Prophet and the sequence:
The Music Never Stopped –> Help On The Way –> Slipknot –> Franklin’s Tower
is on fire (so to speak). The Dark Star was shinning bright on this night. wOw.
While getting ready to do a blog post on Microsoft’s MVC Web API I dumped my CouchDB database of Grateful Dead Internet Archive tapes into SQL Server 2008. To test the full text search on SQL Server I produced this list. I hope you enjoy it. Here is a list of Soundboard or Matrix concert recordings on the Internet Archive where Scarlet Begonias and Fire On The Mountain are played during the same concert. This is a computer generated list. There are 163 concerts listed here. There are 217 concert recordings with this song combination if we were to include audience tapes also.
Click On the image below of a list of ‘best’ SB –> FOTM concert Recordings
[this is a hypertext list - click on a date and you will jump to the Internet Archive Music Player for that concert]
There are over 2,000 concerts of the Grateful Dead available on the Internet Archive. Some nights it’s good and other nights its great. The tour for 1989 is marked by some great shows and these are two of them.
The rhythm section (Lesh, Kreutzmann and Hart) is firing on all cylinders (and is well recorded). Jerry and Brent are locked into a tight dance, trading leads like nobody’s business. The second set includes a phenomenal run of:
Scarlet Begonias –> Fire On the Mountain –> Estimated Prophet –> Eyes of the World
Which I clock at just under 30 minutes of almost continuous lead work by Jerry. Not bad for an old, fat man. I understand from other more informed than me that this is last time this 4 song combination was played by the band. Taking a break for Drums and then returning for Space, Jerry again takes center stage with great versions The Wheel, Standing on the Moon and an encore of U. S. Blues.
Not to be missed if you love the Grateful Dead’s post 1970’s work. So live from the Internet Archive, Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead.
I haven’t written about the Grateful Dead for a while now. Many of the XMas shows of the Dead are not of the best quality. This is a combination of unavailability of quality soundboard tapes and (often) less than inspired playing on the bands part. This 1977 show is an exception. Listen to the whole show on the Internet Archivehere. This tape is re-mastered by “Bertha” from a master reel source by Jay Ashley. Excellent sound processing of a great show. The first set ends with a strong “The Music Never Stopped” but the second set is on fire (so to speak). I personally think this is a better show that Dick’s Pick 10 (1977-12-29) – and its free.
I only saw the Grateful Dead once. I was a student (barely) at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque and it was November 1971. The Dead played with The New Riders and Jerry joined them during the second half of their set. A had gone to the concert with a couple of true Dead Heads from my dorm. How Dead were they? While they had been following the dead tour since school had started in the fall and this was the first time we saw them in Albuquerque this semester. During the first par to the NRPR set there was ol’ Jerry wandering around the back of the auditorium.
Many Dead Heads swear by Dick’s Pick #18 as a definitive sample of the Grateful Dead in the late 1970’s. This was recorded in America’s heartland, Iowa on 1978-02-03 and 1978-02-05. For capturing not only the Godchaux’s (Donna and Keith). Canonical version of Scarlet Begonias and Fire On The Mountain. Donna not in the best of voice that night. Besides the internet archive makes the music from this era available for free (but not 1978-02-03 and 1978-02-05). I have documented elsewhere how to get to the Grateful Dead recordings on the Internet Archive and how to make copies of even the streaming versions of the Dead shows on the Internet archive (Steal This Show!). The (free) music available at this site is more varied than the releases in the Dick’s Picks Series and (in my opinion) is often mixed with a more exciting and live style. Some of the official archive show releases from the Dead organization seem to have the life sucked out of them in the re-mixing process. As good as the February, 1978 shows are I suggest that you take a listen at some of the May, 1977. The Dead has a great run of shows that month.
West L.A. Fadeaway Alpine Valley Music Theater in 1989
The Buffalo and Meadowlands concerts are not, in my opinion, the best of 1989. Nightfall of Diamonds in particular falls short of being a great show. However, like all Dead.Net releases the sound remixing is great. The vocals are far richer on these releases than on the more raw tapes found on the Internet Archive. Crimson White & Indigo is based on the 89/07/07 JFK Stadium Concert. This is a Dead.Net release which I do not own, so I am going on what I hear on the raw non-sound board recordings on the Internet Archive. The show includes a nice Scarlet Begonia ->Fire On The Mountain combination and a ‘big arena’ sound that some may find exciting. Without A Net was produced by Phil. Three cuts are from 1989. The production seems a little ‘cold’ to me. There is a DVD concert video which is a lot of fun: Alpine Valley Music Theater in 1989 DVD you can rent this at many video stores (or watch clips of the concert DVD available on YouTube and elsewhere).
Internet Archive Dead Soundboard Recordings – 1989
There are some interesting shows here and some fantastic (and unique) performances of individual songs. Brent and Jerry are interacting with amazing grace. Phil is flying. Jerry is in fine voice and guitar form. I am listing in this section only shows on the Internet Archive with sound board recordings for 1989. There are other gems out there on the Internet Archive which are available only in audience recordings. I have concentrated here on Soundboard (and where possible, Matrix) recordings of these two tours.
890327 The Omni: Those strange vocal effects you hear are not mistakes but a feature of this concert.
891020 The Spectrum: Jerry is in full voice. The Dead preform “California Earthquake” – which they only preformed twice. A MUST listen.
The version of “The Other One” is very new age-y – very unusual treatment.
Internet Archive Usage Notes
In a prior post I explained two ways to capture “streaming media” off the Internet Archive. In this post I will give some pointers on finding Grateful Dead recordings on the Internet Archive. A good place to start is the Grateful Dead Collection Home Page. Try the link: Grateful Dead Shows on This Day in History. Listen to what others are downloading.
The Internet Archive supports an advanced search option. You can use the search templates provided here to narrow your search. Just change the date and/or target song phrases to match your needs and paste the text into the search Box.
collection:(GratefulDead) AND date:1989-??-??
returns all Grateful Dead recordings for 1989
collection:(GratefulDead) AND date:1989-??-?? AND (subject:”Soundboard” OR subject:”Matrix”)
returns all Grateful Dead recordings for 1989 in either soundboard or Matrix format
collection:(GratefulDead) AND date:1989-??-?? AND (subject:”Soundboard” OR subject:”Matrix”) AND “Fire On The Mountain”
returns all Grateful Dead recordings for 1989 in either soundboard or Matrix format of Fire On The Mountain
Scarlet Begonias -> Fire On The Mountain in 1989
In general this song series is not as strong here as in the golden years (1977-1981), but interesting none the less.
Back in the old daze, Dead Heads traded concert tapes (a primitive early non-digital recording technology). Some of these were recorded by fans and others where sound board recordings made by the Dead organization which found their way into general circulation (i.e. stolen). Eventually, the Dead organization began to publish selected concert tapes as LP records (another primitive non-digital recording technology) and later as CDs and internet downloads. For more information on the history of the Dead recordings see this article. Online you can buy recordings of Dead concerts at the official Dead $ite. Recording information is also available ( and in a more organized format) here. But what if: you don’t like the concerts released by the Dead Organization or if you just want MORE.
The Internet Archive
There is a unique organization and web site called The Internet Archive. TheInternet Archive isa truly vast catalog of public domain audio and video recording which are in the public domain. There is no internet collection which is larger. Their slogan is simply: Universal Access To All Knowledge. The Dead organization has released a vast number of Dead concert recordings to The Internet Archive, to which are added the large number of fan recordings. In all there are over 7,000 Grateful Dead Recordings in their collection. Let me write that again, 7,000 concerts recordings. Fan recordings are often available for direct download and most sound board recording are available in streaming (only) format. But see my note at the end of this post for a resent development. The only exception is that concerts which were the basis for Grateful Dead official releases or which concerts which have been commercially released on Dead.Net. These are not available on the archive. Sound quality ranges from ok to GREAT, mono to full stereo. The search facilities of the archive are well thought out. Search by song, venue and/or date. The only problem is that there are so many recordings over such a long period (1968 – 1995) that you may not know where to begin. You could focus on a particular year (when did you first attend a Dead concert) or a favorite song. The Internet archive does provide some help with a “Recently Reviewed Concert” link; and a “Dead Concerts on this Day in History” link. You can also look for postings by Chris Miller and “Matrix” or the key word: soundboard.
What’s on my IPod Right Now
Well, let me by honest here: I am obsessed with the song sequence:
Scarlet Begonias followed by Fire On The Mountain
The Dead played this combination over 250 times between 1977 and 1994. This sequence runs from 20 to 30 minuets in length (tending towards the high end in the 1990′s). From my samples the best tours for this sequence are 1977, 1978, and 1989-1992. There are some bad versions (typically during the 1982-1988 tours and the 1977 tour when Donna signs off key many nights!). Here is my very subjective list of good to great versions based on what I have listened to so far.
The Offical Releases:
Dick’s Picks #18 (Jerry and both Godchauxs are on this night).
Dick’s Picks #13 (This is a hidden track. Put on Disc 2, Track 4 “Saint of Circumstance” at the end of this track is 20 seconds of dead air after that comes a November 1, 1979 version of Scarlet Bagonias -> Fire on the Mountain. The rest of Dick’s Picks #13 was based on records made May 6, 1981. This is a kick ass version and is my reference track for the best version of this particular sequence).
Dick’s Pick #06 (skip this one, slow and lack luster)
From the Internet Archives (these are all streaming only version but see my notes at the end of this blog on how to make a local copy:
Not So Great but worth a listen:
Making Local Copies Of Streaming Media
There are several different free or inexpensive programs which will grab the audio stream and save it to an mp3 (or other) format. I have had good luck with Replay Music 3 ($19.95) combined with the Google Chrome Browser. Replay Music will allow saving to WAV format in addition to MP3. The downside of this approach is, of course, that this is real time recording only.
There is a Better Way
If you run the Chrome Browser and access the Internet Arhive, when you go to a stream only Dead concert the screen will look something like these before and after pictures:
With the Chrome (and maybe Safari) browser, Internet Archive will offer you the ability to convert to the HTML5 Audio tag in place of the embedded browser (which uses the Object tag). Say YES to this offer. Having done so follow these steps to allow SAVING of the audio files directly WITHOUT streaming.
Start playing a track you wish to save
Right click on the time slider bar at the top of the music player,
select “Save Audio file”
select a save location
That’s it. Here is what the right click drop down list looks like:
Thank you HTML5 Audio Tag. Jerry would be proud.
Remember you must start playing a track for this technique to work.
Does the Internet Archive know that using the Audio tag defeats the intend of streaming media only?
Will they plug the hole?
Can they plug the hole or is this basic to the nature of the HTML5 audio tag?