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Friday, April 11, 2014

A Pigless Monster at the Fillmore East: July 12, 1970

LN jg1970-07-12.nrps-gd.aud-cooper.122707.flac1644

More old listening notes.

The "Not Fade Away" and "Good Lovin'" from the electric Dead set feature absolutely top shelf rock and roll playing. Look at how I go off on this stuff wow wow wow wow wow and all that. If this tape sounded better, this'd be in the canon with 5/2/70.

Note that Pigpen never makes himself heard - Weir sings "Good Lovin'".

Don't ask me about the metadata - I will not be the one to figure out what was played on what dates (and what we mean by "dates" for these midnight shows) during the four-night July 1970 run of Fillmore East Dead shows.

The AGD set looks great on paper, but it doesn't set me on fire. The NRPS set is a wreck, and probably incomplete on this fileset. Get drawn in by the rarities, but stay for the quintet scalping.

An Evening With The Grateful Dead
Fillmore East
105 2nd Avenue
New York NY 10003

July 12, 1970 (Sunday)
Jim Cooper aud shnid-122707

--set I: Acoustic Grateful Dead (8 tracks, 29:56, presumed incomplete)--
s1-AGD-t01. //El Paso [#2:23] [0:04] % [0:02]
s1-AGD-t02. Friend Of The Devil [3:53] [0:02] %
s1-AGD-t03. /New Speedway Boogie [10:17] [0:02] %
s1-AGD-t04. /So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad) [2:36]
-enter David Nelson-
s1-AGD-t05. (1) [0:03] Rosa Lee McFall [2:51] % [0:04]
s1-AGD-t06. A Voice From On High [2:37] % [0:04]
s1-AGD-t07. Jordan [2:08] % [0:04]
s1-AGD-t08. Swing Low Sweet Chariot [2:48] %

--set II: New Riders of the Purple Sage (6 tracks, 29:42, presumed incomplete)--
s2-NRPS-t09. Six Days On The Road [3:44] %
s2-NRPS-t10. Whatcha Gonna Do [4:23] %
s2-NRPS-t11. Truck Drivin' Man [3:52] % [0:03
s2-NRPS-t12. Dirty Business [6:30] %
s2-NRPS-t13. Lodi [5:03] %
s2-NRPS-t14. Last Lonely Eagle// [6:07#]

--set III: Electric Grateful Dead (16 tracks [11 songs], 82:35, presumed approximately complete)--
s3-GD-t15. Morning Dew [0:43] %
s3-GD-t16. Morning Dew [con't] [1:48] %
s3-GD-t17. Morning Dew [con't] [0:54]
s3-GD-t18. Morning Dew [con't] [1:00] %
s3-GD-t19. Morning Dew [6:08] % [0:02]
s3-GD-t20. /Sitting On Top Of The World [#3:15]
s3-GD-t21. /Me And My Uncle [3:18] [0:02] %
s3-GD-t22. Not Fade Away [15:02] % [0:04]
s3-GD-t23. Casey Jones [5:00 % [0:05]
s3-GD-t24. Mama Tried [2:40] [0:03] %
s3-GD-t25. [0:03] % Good Lovin' [9:55] %
s3-GD-t26. Good Lovin' [con't [9:00] % [0:03]
s3-GD-t27. High Time (2) [7:32] [0:02] % [0:02]
s3-GD-t28. ... Cumberland Blues/ [#4:40#]
s3-GD-t29. China Cat Sunflower [6:45] [-1:13] % [->]
s3-GD-t30. [+1:13] I Know You Rider [3:06] [0:02] % [0:04] % dead air [0:06]

! ACT1: Acoustic Grateful Dead
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - ac-g, vocals;
! lineup: Bob Weir - ac-g, vocals;
! lineup: Phil Lesh - el-b, ?vocals?;
! lineup: ?Bill Kreutzmann? - drums;
! guest: David Nelson - mandolin, vocals.

! ACT2: New Riders Of The Purple Sage
! lineup: John Dawson - ?ac?-g, vocals;
! lineup: David Nelson - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - pedal steel guitar;
! lineup: Dave Torbert - el-b;
! lineup: Mickey Hart - drums.

! ACT3: Grateful Dead
! lineup: Jerry Garcia - el-g, vocals;
! lineup: Bob Weir - ael-g, vocals;
! lineup: Phil Lesh - el-b, vocals;
! lineup: Bill Kreutzmann - drums and percussion;
! lineup: Mickey Hart - drums and percussion;
! absent: Ron "Pigpen" McKernan.

! R: symbols

! db: (this fileset).

! archive:

! map:

! venue:

! R: field recordist: Jim Cooper

! R: field recording equipment: 2x Hitachi mics > Hitachi TRQ-222 Cassette recorder.

! R: field recording location: Row H, about the 30th row, center.

! R: "This is an incomplete recording and there is an electronic noise intermittently on the left channel. Talking and crowd noise is present as well."

! R: taper note: "This was a great concert and one of the best nights (mornings) of my life."

! R: this is definitely not a high-fidelity recording, and the L-channel static is quite present. Massive overload. But what are you gonna do? It's an amazing historical document. Thank you Jim Cooper and Rob Berger and all the tapers and sharers!

! metadata: I don't have time to get into the metadata now. I need to listen to all of the other tapes and read what's already known about the actual assignation of the various music to the various "July xx 1970 Fillmore East" recordings. Try to sort out calendar dates and times, so confused because of the ca. midnight starting time of these shows.

! P: This contains a pretty amazing EGD performance. For my money, The "Good Lovin'" is among the best they did. The AGD and NRPS sets are, respectively, just OK and pretty bad, at least based on this tape.

! P: t01 one of the great pleasures of the GD acoustic sets is hearing Jerry sing harmonies. Like on this El Paso.

! t04 is Jerry playing electric?

! song: "So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad)" (t04): Everly Brothers' 1960 release, maybe a singleton in the recorded GD canon. Indeed, as of now (12/6/2013) I understand this to be a singleton. I have listened to it twice, don't get much out of it.

! s1-AGD-t05 (1) "IRIT & LAURIE LOVE": "I love you, Jimmy."

! s1-AGD-t05 RLM has mandolin accompaniment, presumably Nelson.

! s1-AGD-t06 AVFOH mandolin (Nelson?), Nelson definitely on harmony vocals

! P: t01-t08: the acoustic material underwhelms me. It looks great on paper. Maybe it's the tape quality. But I just can't get into it.

! P: t12 This "Dirty Business" has a weird feel. Torbert is walking it a little too much early on, and it never attains that deep, burning, grungy groove that the best versions do. This is *way* uptempo for this song. Interesting. Not totally successful. Weird. Interesting.

! P: t13 Lodi is kind of a mess, Dawson off, Nelson not keeping right tempo (check around 1-1:29). He has to keep trying to tell people to get off because no-one quite knows what to do. Train wreck.

! P t09-t13 The NRPS material is below average, I'd say. I hear lots of tempo weirdness. Of course, the tape isn't doing anyone any favors.

! P: t14 LLE again it just doesn't sound together. While Dirty Business is much too brisk, this is just a little bit too brisk.

! R: NRPS-t14 LLE cuts out, probably less than a minute missing.

! R: t15-t19 MD splices @ track markers and t17 @ 0:33.

! R: t20 SOTOTW clips in

! P: t21 MAMU This is done "electric GD" style, as opposed to "NRPS" style, which the Acoustic GD would on occasion do (e.g., 4/18/70 Family Dog). It's a shame, because I really like the high harmonies in the NRPS arrangement, but whatever. My sense is that GD just wasn't willing to let go of the song and let NRPS have it, and they seemed to prefer to play it electric to acoustic. (I also miss the NRPS harmonies on "Mama Tried", FWIW.)

! P: t22 NFA this is a MASSIVE rendition of an American classic. Jerry has the wah cranked up already in the setup to his first solo in the second minute. It's less pronounced in the solo itself, but for a second he hit wah to rival 8/27/72's "Greatest Story Ever Told". Yeah, I said it. @ 3:45 they start really cooking, Bob turns himself up a little, Jerry digging a little groove. Taper's girl getting a little chatty. 4:18 Bob starts a great little descending thing, they are a little bit in the AWBYG/GDTRFB outro theme for awhile, they could easily drop it right down into that, but they are not in a rush. Garcia quotes "First There Is A Mountain" @ 5:36 for a few seconds, and he's a little bit in that tempo, back to a chunky NFA line @  6-minute mark, egging the crowd to keep that beat so he can wander back out. Crowd starts some very nice rhythm, and Jerry goes to about 60 degrees from his previous course, just the place he was looking for. Nice though over 7-min mark, stepping in a little more wah. Jerrys' in an "Other One" space late in the 8-minute mark, but Bob has something of his own going, and he doesn't take the bait, so Jerry comes back out and returns to the AWBYG/GDTRFB space. Here at 10:14 they could very easily turn it any of a number of directions, building some suspense 10:35, Phil and Jerry both pregnantly fluttering strings, Jerry hits a nice theme late in the 10-minute mark ... Bob strums some stuff, a little darker, and 11:23 Bob is almost playing Eyes Of The World! We'll hear these same chords in 1974. A few times it sounded to me like they could have pivoted to IKYR. In short, like a lot of 1970 NFAs, this one opens up very nicely and is highly thematic. @ 12:57 Bob forces them right back to NFA ... it was a little hasty ... they all get there, but I just don't think everyone was quite ready. So they set their feet under them, go once 'round the bases, at get to the verse @ 13:32ish. Jerry is having to do more harmony vocals, with Pig laying out somewhere. A few times I thought I heard Pig, but I don't think so.

! P: t25-t26 GL: Weir sings! Drum interlude 2:35-9:58. @ 4:35 a crowd member yells "Hey [or Yay] Pigpen!", or I thought he did. But Pig never makes himself heard. This drum session is hot as hell, and the crowd shows its appreciation early in the 9-min mark. The reprise is drummed up and drops in perfectly. Yeah! Nice rhythm led by Phil, 6- of t26 ... then a big bass solo 6:15 wow! This is a great jam. The second cut track of GL lays bare the band's raw power ... Wow. In the 2-min range of this track, Phil sounds like fucking Beethoven, and everyone is jamming alone and together, totally locked in but each carving his own groove, birds darting and ducking through and around the others, a supertight, colorful weave. Outstanding. Jerry hits a peak at 3:20 and the crowd yips a little bit, unbelieving. At 6 minutes into this track ... wow wow wow 6:15 Phil is doing his best Jack Casady. Ballin ... WOW. Jerry starts to get some waahhh, and he could be Jorma back there a little bit. Listen to what Phil runs over at 6:58 WOW WOW WOW 7:13 drops into Good Lovin' with the rest of the crew. Weir takes the vocals @ 7:29. @@

t27. (2) @ ca. 3ish High Time during tune, woman asks near taper “Want the cat? Text file note: "DELI BOVI DEBUT".

! R: t28 CB enters in progress and barely clips out, not much missing.

! P: t30 CCS transition from CCS to IKYR is Nice. Gets immediate liftoff at 3:28ish, Bob doing a really nice lead turn, he has some a long way from the spacy androgynous teenager of the Warlocks! Jerry's playing it real chonky behind him, and the whole band locks around Bob as he shreds. His transformation as a guitar player is mostly credit to Bob himself, of course, but I am sure the band around him had something to do with it! So Jerry starts expressing interest in taking a turn of his own in the 5:20 mark, by 5:43 we have IKYR theme. But the band is laying back, almost waiting for something, and Phil around 6:15 says "Hey, how about it?" The crowd cheers and starts clapping up IKYR, and I think Phil was basically taking a tip o' the hat, or soliciting one, but also offering one up to everyone in the room. "Hey, how about it, you having fun, or what?!?" They ought to be, because they have been grooving to a great American rock and roll band channeling a million cosmic megawatts. It's a nice moment all around. I can see why the taper, Jim Cooper, said "This was a great concert and one of the best nights (mornings) of my life."

! R: t29-t30 obviously I'd track the transition differently, but it's all good. There are some tape splices in this region, into the first minute ot the IKYR track (t30). Again @ 2:20.


  1. Nice writeup. The date was indeed 7/12/70, though early tapes were somehow mislabeled 7/11.
    Eyewitnesses said that Pigpen seemed to be having some vocal problem that night, so he didn't sing; although he did sing the earlier two nights.
    Unfortunately Cooper's tape doesn't include the monstrous concluding Viola Lee Blues:

    Here are two eyewitness accounts of the Viola Lee - the show ended after dawn:

    The 7/11 show (usually labeled 7/12) is even better, in fact one of the most powerful sets of the year. I agree if this run was available in SBD it would probably blow away all the other Fillmore East runs.

  2. Do you mean that this started just after midnight on 7/12, so people would have entered the venue on 7/11?

    1. That's not the reason; the dates for the circulating 7/11 and 7/12 tapes were simply switched somehow, so to this day each show is labeled with the wrong date (except for Cooper's recording). There is abundant proof of this, from both audience members & tapers.
      How this happened, I don't know. It's one of the instances where deadbase/deadlists erred.

  3. OK, but what I am asking is, what date/time did this show begin and end?

    1. The show started at midnight and ended around 5:30.
      So yes, people would have entered during the final hour of July 11.

      Note that on Marty Weinberg's tape of the 7/11 show, he states that it's "Saturday night, July 11," though technically it was then well after midnight on July 12.


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