Friday, January 16, 2009

Lesh Philling, Bass Grate

Grateful Dead dancing bear~MNS-2009-Volume-004

Grateful Dead - June 18, 1974
Freedom Hall - Louisville, Kentucky

1st Set: The Promised Land, It Must Have Been The Roses,
Black-Throated Wind, Ramble On Rose, Beat It On Down The Line,
, Mexicali Blues, Eyes Of The World China Doll,
Around And Around

Set 2: Loose Lucy, El Paso, Row Jimmy, Weather Report Suite
Let It Grow
The Other One Space Jam It's A Sin Jam
Stella Blue
, Big River, Tennessee Jed, Sugar Magnolia

Encore: Morning Dew

Hey now it's me, Smag. I have listened to this show a couple of times over the last couple of days, it's really good. One thing that really stood out for me in just about every song in this particular recording is just how well you can hear Phil, and he sounds great! It's not too much Phil (as in all you can hear is Phil) but you can really hear him and he sounds really good.

In the first set the sound was a little wonky in the first few songs, especially during Promised Land, where you can hardly hear Bob singing at times. The sound was much better by the end of the song but it took awhile before everything was just exactly perfect. It Must Have Been the Roses was nice but what I loved was Black Throated Wind. Such a great song! The sound was still a little wonky but at least you could hear Bob and he was great. Listening to Ramble On Rose again I am reminded what it is I love about this band. When I see Ramble On Rose in a set list I don't usually get too excited about it but this is a good one. I was hanging out with Zoooma the first time I heard this show, and when they started BIODTL on two beats, we both laughed. A show like this is even more fun when it's shared and the person you're listening with understands why that's funny. BIODTL, Loser, Mexicali were good (especially Mexicali, I love Bobby cowboy tunes), but my favorite part of this first set is Eyes of the World. As I was listening to Eyes I thought I heard a few Slipknot rifs in there, when we were talking about it Zoooma pointed out that this show was the year before Blues For Allah, so I guess the songs on that album had to come from somewhere. Anyway, what a great Eyes!

I love the Loose Lucy on this night, especially Phil! After that the band blazed through El Paso with so much energy, such a good El Paso! Weather Report Suite was really good, I was a little distracted the first time I listened to it, but listening to it again, wow! WRS flowed seamlessly into Other One with some nice crunchy notes from Phil. Phil didn't exactly drop the bomb the way he sometimes does, but the intro was still there. Near the end of Other One is a cool spacey jam that comes together in what sounds like a different song before It's A Sin, it sounds like Other One, Space, Cool Unidentifiable Jam =>>It's A Sin==>Stella Blue. Ah. Beautiful!

A couple of cowboy tunes stuck in there, well played, but then Sugar Mag! Some (cough cough) would say that Donna ruins it but I think she's ok and well, sometimes she ruins songs way more than that. Sometimes she sounds really good, so, whatever :). The Morning Dew encore may be the best part, Jerry's guitar playing in the end blows me away every time I hear it. I guess it doesn't matter, anyway!

A review, transcribed from:

DeadBase IXDeadBase IX [out of print]


This show is another important addition to any tape collection as it includes one of the Dead's finest improvisations. There are other convincing reasons to own this tape. The first set features a showcase version of Eyes of The World, an impressive feat during a year where excellent versions were all too common. The Weather Report Suite in the second set is equally impressive, including one of the finest renditions of Let It Grow.

In spite of the excellent songs that preceeded, a two-part jam is easily the most interesting passage of the evening. After the first verse, a short Other One dissolves into Space with vague hints of Blues For Allah improvisations of the year to come. As this Space matures the Bill conspires with Keith and a jam is born. Keith starts off with a great jazz flavor, Garcia picks up on the theme, and soon the whole band is bopping together. A quick, but painless, metamorphosis yields the slow blues jam of It's A Sin. Beautiful and inspired, its only sin is to be so short. These two themes are distinct distillations of two major influences on their music, providing impressive displays of jamming in its rawest form.

The Morning Dew encore is wonderful. Phil introduces it with thunderous notes, and yet manages a beautifully tender touch for the quiter passages. He is able to move between these two modes frequently and effortlessly throughout the song.

Zoooma here...

It had been over five and a half years since the Dead previously played a show in the Kentucky (12-7-68 Bellarmine College) and I suspect it was finally time to come back in order to get some Venusian Spy to reveal him or herself. (Stage Banter, I don't know, ask Bobby!)

Anyway, twas time to graduate from the small college scene and play in the larger Freedom Hall located out at the Kentucky Exposition Center. Used also for other events, this arena is where the University of Louisville Cardinals' basketball team plays their home games. Judging by some Phil sarcasm after Promised Land, they perhaps could have played Bellarmine again or some other smaller venue in town: "Well, we're sure glad y'all could make it here tonight, all hundred thousand of ya." Sounds like Freedom Hall had some room for a whole lot of freedom of movement without bumpin' into your neighbors too much. And if memory serves me correctly, there was a similar occurrence four years later in the college basketball arena in Lexington, Kentucky when the place, well, wasn't quite full. I guess it took awhile for the GD to catch on in the Bluegrass State.

The sound here is yuckily muddy for the first minute and forty-five, and some other mix problems persist through the first few songs, but stick with it 'cause it's just momentary and I think by the time BT Wind is through, it clears up nicely and becomes nearly Dicks Pick's quality for the rest of the show.

Sugarmag named this post appropriately: Phil is so prominent in the mix. Mannn. You love Lesh? This is a grate show for ya! And not just lots of grate Phil but great versions of every song. Loser is a standout for me in the first set and of course Eyes-> China Doll. Mmmm!!! Unfortunately, the quality lessens for a little while (a dropout or maybe a patch from a slightly inferior source) but it's not for too long. For the most part this is just another splendid rendition to carry you away. Donna's subtle background vocals add such a beautiful touch while Jerry, Phil and Keith each play perfectly. I love the short passages of King Solomon's Marbles in these early years Eyes and the roll into China Doll, while not the smoothest here, is nice and what a pleasant China Doll it is. Around and Around is blistering by the end and is such a great way to cap off the first set.

Coming back from Halftime, Lucy is a little sloppy thus maybe a little too rigid, but some nice Jerry & Phil throughout. The energy is definitely UP in the following El Paso. Like Around and Around, it starts out normal enough but Holy smokin' hot Texas barbeque, Sam Houston!

WRS/Let It Grow is just as picture perfect as you'd want the most perfect picture to be. The playing out of it is simply outstanding. When I was first listening, as Let It Grow finally gave way to the Jam before Other One, I looked at Sugarmag and just went, "Wow." She nodded and simply replied, "Yeah." Why try using more words than that?!

It is too bad the It's A Sin Jam is so brief but everything around it is so nice
with just this little short blues jam wedged in. As the band shifted gears from classic Dead jamming to the blues, I remember being like, "Mmmm, wow, that's so cool." And it is. Stella Blue is wonderful before Big River and Tennessee Jed are, in my opinion, awkwardly stuffed in there before the closing song. On the plus side that means a nice amount of extra Phil! I find when the band is all out jamming he's heard slightly less than on songs like TN Jed which almost seems like one big Phil Fest. That continues right on through the rockin' Sugar Mag to close the second set. Some (cough cough) would say Donna doesn't ruin the song in the end but if you thinks he sounds good than ok, whatever. She does sound good sometimes but that wailing and yelping of hers... oi. In any case, it's still a great end to a great show and the Dew encore is just Dewlicious! Again, and Whew, especially at the end, why even try to describe it? Just Press Play and Dig It!
6-18-74 a.k.a. 06-18-74 a.k.a. 6/18/74 a.k.a. 06/18/74 a.k.a. 74-06-18
Source: Soundboard>
Master Reel> DAT> SHN
(Bertha Remaster)

Audio Quality:
6/18/74 Freedom Hall
@ the Internet Archive:

the Soundboard
for your Listening Pleasure Only
Grateful Dead backstage pass - 6/18/74 Freedom Hall, Louisville, Kentucky [from]


Part 1 - Louisville 6/18/74

6/18/74 Louisville - Part 2

Hey, if you download and dig the tunes, leave a comment and let us know!!
When you tell us Thanks and that you Love The Tunes,
that's always welcomed and ya know what?

It'll encourage us to keep on keepin' on! Ya know?


freakypete said...

what a lovely show.
thanks mags
my favourite yet.

Adam said...

This show is a total smoker! The Eyes > China Doll is my all-time favorite. The Loose Lucy is also my favorite, but of the early arrangement (round and round! Go Donna!). If you folks are even thinking about whether or not to get this one, stop immediately and start downloading! This is the GD in '74!!! Adam

Sugarmag said...

Hi Freakypete and Adam, I'm glad you dig this show, it is pretty grate :). Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

Melynda said...

Love this show! I have great memories of listening to this by a warm fire during a long cold (crazy) winter night years ago. Thank you for posting it!

Sugarmag said...

Hey now Melynda, I'm glad you dug the show. Take care

Will said...

Thanks again!! Some great great stuff here. A little treasure trove.

Will said...

Lovely lovely... FYI: "It Must Have Been The Roses" is labeled as "Run For The Roses".


Sugarmag said...

Hi Will! Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Thanks for pointing out the labeling mistake, I didn't even notice. Dang it!

one says one number and the other another
but they were set at the same time. Hmmm...

Calvin and Hobbes in the snow -- animated