Cornell '77

Specifically, Barton Hall, May 8th 1977.

A friend lent me a tape (didn’t everyone’s?) and my arrogance melted.

Lucky guy - he was there, and it was his first show.

Take a step back.

Ummm, huh?

Grateful Dead. You can hear it here.

Because I came along after Donna I don’t love some of these shows as much as my friends, but it includes a pretty tasty Saint Stephen.

If this really was his first show that’s kind of not fair. He was probably let down many times after that.

Ohhhh yeah. Saw the thread title and knew exactly the show. Probably every note. It’s Grateful Dead 101, the ultimate starter show. There are things to love about other eras and shows, and some people are better off with studio work, but Ithica ‘77? Favorite show ever.
Epic Dancin’ in the Streets, the kind of tune people don’t associate with them but are blown away with the tight corner turns, spot changes and intense groove. The Scarlet>Fire is textbook Dead-in general and of the era. That massive Phil bomb that jumps it off is legendary.

Too much work to do … must stop typing … must stop typing … must… must not stop dancing~:):cool::p;):D:):cool::eek::p;):cool::slight_smile:

ETA: There’s a 5.1 surround mix out there that’s great if you have a system and listening space for it.

Miss you Jerry :frowning:

I have obviously listened to that Cornell show many, many times over the years, but to me personally, it’s not a top-ten favorite like it is for so many other Deadheads.

In fairness, I am not much of a Keith and Donna fan, and I rarely listen to live Grateful Dead from the 1970’s, as my very favorite years for the Dead were '68-'69, back when Pigpen was still a raunchy, boozy bluesman, even while the rest of the band was evolving into the next incarnation of their psychedelic metamorphosis, leading to an audible, palpable creative tension that helped spark some truly remarkable performances, as well as 1989 & 1990, back when Brent Mydland was at his passionate, tortured best, just waiting to pounce on any hesitation by Garcia or Weir to take the musical reins as his own, keeping the rest of the band on notice that they needed to be ready to get off of their collective asses and FUCKING PLAY!!! The interaction and musical chemistry between Jerry and Brent was incendiary, and after Brent passed, Jerry slipped slowly into indifference, and eventually creative oblivion.

'Till the end of days, that is. I know that in the early nineties I’d consider gnawing my arm off at yet another Liberty closer, but if only we could hear it again–and I’d gnaw off my legs for one more So Many Roads or Lazy River Road. And who can forget Air Garcia?

The band as a whole was coming alive again with Corrina, Samba in the Rain, etc. Corrina was a bit overplayed too (bad Bobby, NO CORRINA!), but still smokin’ the first 50 times. The late late era may not compete with some earlier energy, but it has some fine material and can hold its own for some stellar performances.

Oh, don’t get me wrong, I think that So Many Roads was a Minor Masterpiece and along with the sublime Foolish Heart, as brilliant as anything that Hunter/Garcia ever wrote, right up there with Eyes Of The World, Stella Blue or Comes A Time…

I saw the live concert debut of a lot of the new stuff from the 1990’s, including the first ever versions of So Many Roads, Corrina, Wave To The Wind, Samba In The Rain, Lazy River Road, etc. and actually really enjoyed most of those songs—That said, Jerry and Brent were at the end equals; True Brothers in Music, with Brent holding his own next to a legendary American Musical Icon. Neither Bruce Hornsby or Vince Welnick’s playing ever seemed to challenge Jerry Garcia the way that Brent’s did, and in my opinion, the last couple years of Brent’s life were musically the best years of the Grateful Dead’s remarkable 30-year career.

PS–When Jerry was getting ready to play So Many Roads for the first time (Oakland 2/92) his roadie ran a music stand out on the stage between songs and set it up in front of his mic. I never saw that happen before or since, but I guess ol’ Jerry wanted a little help with the lyrics for that one…

If only Jerry had turned to teleprompters for a few years~
Didn’t take any exception to your post, just wanted to chime in that they were in a creative upswing in their final years. Everyone has their favorite era(s) and the Brent years are among the best. While I’m no Donna fan, she really hits a handful of notes in a handful of songs that really makes them shine. Her caterwauling in PITB, for example, spikes the energy. Other versions do well without her, but there’s something in the air. The '77 era had that slow, laconic vibe that was nonetheless so packed with musical complications it defied gravity. Not better … different.

The real tragedy here is that I’m about to run out of things to do in the office in which I can wear headphones. I’ll find something. Favorite Brent show?

I always loved the Row Jimmy from that show. I still listen to it all the time.

If I recall, I think that the teleprompters first appeared sometime later in 1992.
There were SO many longtime Deadheads who basically gave up on the band in the final years, and while I will admit that there were some pretty lackluster (putting it VERY mildly) shows in the last days, there were also some flashes of utter brilliance, and moments of such sublime power and epic beauty that I would give ANYTHING to be able to relive them just one more time…