Grateful dead dating

He really enjoyed the process.” But the process was slow.

As the recording sessions started to drag throughout the winter of 1977 – and the band faced the possibility of not finishing the record before going on tour – Steve Parish, a member of the crew (and later Garcia’s manager), came up with a novel idea: Nail the studio door shut. “But we were under the gun, and it kept the guys in there.” The finished album, , was the Dead’s most polished, professional effort to date, foreign adjectives that didn’t necessarily thrill everyone in the band.

But Deadheads who caught the Palladium shows witnessed a startling sight: a firm and focused Grateful Dead.

“We came out really strong,” says percussionist Mickey Hart of those and other shows on the band’s spring ’77 tour.

“There were no train wrecks.” About a dozen concerts from that year have already been released on CDs and downloads, but on June 11th, the biggest batch yet arrived with , a 14-disc box featuring five complete shows from that tour.

“We had all this new material we were excited about playing,” says Donna Jean Godchaux, who sang with the Dead during this period.

With tempered enthusiasm, bassist and co-founder Phil Lesh later called the album “a fairly successful effort” that “varied wildly in terms of material.” At the time, though, the band put on a positive face about its aural makeover.

“We were trying to make a real rec­ord for Clive,” says Hart.

Starting in January 1977, the band and Olsen bore down on new material – including the epic “Terrapin Station” suite and Weir’s reggae-influenced “Estimated Prophet” – at Sound City, the funky but first-rate San Fernando Valley studio recently immortalized in Dave Grohl’s documentary.

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