Today In Grateful Dead History: July 16, 1966 – Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco, CA

skeleton&rosesTime to dial the way back machine up another notch and travel to 1966 for a very interesting show that is made up mostly of covers and only features two real jammy songs.  We start off with I Know You Rider from the days before China Cat Sunflower existed and then segue through several other familiar songs like Big Boss Man and Beat It On Down the Line before getting to In The Pines, an ancient folk song made popular by Leadbelly and covered very successfully by some grunge band.

A few songs later we get one of the best versions of He Was a Friend of Mine, an awesome arrangement of Cream Puff War and the first of those jams, Viola Lee Blues, which clocks in at nearly 10 minutes and is pretty great.  Rarities and familiarities abound from here – You Don’t Have to Ask followed by Cold Rain and Snow and a fun Good Morning Little Schoolgirl, our second “jam” of the day.

Jerry Garcia said somewhere (I can’t find the link now) that the band at this juncture really belonged to Pigpen, and he owns this show, both vocally and with his organ playing, which is very prominent and basically overpowers everyone else in the group.  This is great, but if you don’t like Pigpen on the organ, you should stay far away from this show, cause you’re gonna get it, full blast.

If you’re in the mood for something completely different, a show that encapsulates where the Dead were at this time and hints at where they are going, then this would be a good choice for you.

Enjoy the soundboard here:

P.S.  – I missed a couple of days, but that’s doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check out the excellent Playin’ In The Band>Drums>The Wheel>Playin’ In The Band from the Orpheum Theater on July 14, 1976 or the awful
Why Don’t We Do It In The Road from the Greek Theater on July 15, 1984.