Grateful Dead

Winterland 1973 - The Complete Recordings - Disc 3 of 9

Tracks: 6, total time: 55:51, year: 1973, genre: Rock

Winterland 1973 - The Complete Recordings - Disc 3 of 9
© 2008 Grateful Dead Productions/Rhino

Originally Released October 15,2008
Retail Version Released April 7, 2009
Recording Date: November 9, 1973 - November 11, 1973

Catalog No: GRA2 6007

AMG EXPERT REVIEW: This nine-disc box set gathers music from a trio of consecutive Grateful Dead gigs -- November9 -- 11, 1973 at their hometown hockey rink Winterland Arena. Atthe time the band consisted of Jerry Garcia (lead guitar/vocals), Donna Jean Godchaux (vocals), Keith Godchaux (keyboards), BillKreutzmann (drums), Phil Lesh (electric bass/vocals), and Bob Weir (rhythm guitar/vocals). In 1973, they atypically played a merehandful of gigs in San Francisco. According to Dennis McNally's liner notes, the run represented within could be considered over half of their Bay Area appearances for the year. That shouldn't suggest that the combo weren't keeping a full calendar, as they played about every five days or so for a total of 72 live shows. Asthe overwhelming bounty of strong performances on 2008's Winterland 1973: The Complete Recordings substantiates, the combo were operating on all cylinders and -- when applicable -- at full velocity. Hearing the natural ebb and flow inherent in the concerts themselves reveals the Grateful Dead's singular ability to effortlessly vacillate between a multitude of styles. Among them are straight-ahead vintage rock & roll -- namely Chuck Berry's "Johnny B.Goode" and "Around and Around" -- to covering country & western troubadours Johnny Cash ("Big River,") Marty Robbins ("El Paso"),and George Jones ("The Race Is On"). An amalgam of these artistswould heavily influence the writing of Weir and John Barlow as the originals and Grateful Dead songbook staples "Mexicali Blues" and, to a more refined degree, the tales-from-the-road sensibilityof "Black-Throated Wind" and "Looks Like Rain." Another facet ofthe hydra-headed Grateful Dead reaches back into their formidable psychedelic past, while Garcia, Keith Godchaux, and Kreutzmannare simultaneously aggressive in their pursuit of a jazzier gradeof instrumental improvisation. Nowhere is this as evident as during the multiple stretched-out epic and exploratory readings of "Playing in the Band," "Eyes of the World," and "Weather Report Suite." Likewise, each night brought a host of undeniably special musical moments.

Friday (November 9) contains a seminal "fast""They Love Each Other" with a few lyrical rearrangements by Garcia, the return of the far-too-infrequently played ballad "To Lay Me Down," and the tight segue between the fiery "Greatest Story Ever Told" and "Bertha." Saturday the 10th is marked by a simple and lovely "Brokedown Palace," and the not-to-be-missed medley linking a spacy "Playing in the Band" to "Uncle John's Band" to a note-perfect "(Walk Me out in The) Morning Dew" that briefly revisits "Uncle John's Band" before returning, bookending the whole affair with a reprise of "Playing in the Band." Plus, the stand-alone"Stella Blue" is well worth mentioning for inclined minds. Seasoned listeners might find that the elements seem to align perfectly throughout the Sunday night outing. The centerpiece is a half-hour-plus "Dark Star" that weaves in and out of the melody beforeconnecting to an incisive "Eyes of the World" and concludes nearly an hour later with a poignant "China Doll." The slinky and appropriately ribald rhythm pulsating through "Loose Lucy," and arguably the best "Weather Report Suite" (of the three found in the this box), are other highlights from the 11th. In terms of fidelity, the project incorporates the Plangent Process, which has unquestionably produced the finest sounding two-track project to have come from the always quality-conscious Jeffrey Norman during his tenure as the Grateful Dead's sonic restorationist. Norman also says that the only song to be M.I.A. is an "encore that wasn't recorded on the 9th." Parties who pre-ordered Winterland 1973: The Complete Recordings online were also supplied several premiums: a postcard reproduction of a Grateful Dead mass-mailing from the early '70s and a "Good Ol' Grateful Dead" pin (read: badge) are buta few of the goodies. The icing on the cake is the nine-song "bonus disc" of excerpts from a few weeks later on December 4, 1973 at the Cincinnati Gardens, more information about which can be found on the 2008 bonus edition of Winterland 1973: The Complete Recordings. by Lindsay Planer Editorial Review
When the Grateful Dead played San Francisco's Winterland Arena for three straight nights in November 1973, they triumphed with home court advantage during one of their most celebrated eras. RecordedNovember 9, 10, and 11, the trio of epic shows captured on WINTERLAND 1973 are among the finest and most legendary in the band'svast tape vaults, according to Dead archivist David Lemieux. Housed in a deluxe archival box and presented in HDCD, the set contains a portfolio of 72 tracks mastered from the original two-trackMaster Tapes using an innovative process that delivers unprecedented sound quality. WINTERLAND 73 will be issued in a one time only limited edition run.

By Stuart Jefferson (San Diego, CA)

Nine discs - 61,69, 55,67, 61,57, 57,57, 79 minutes each approximately. The original release contained a "bonus"disc (77 minutes) from Cincinatti on 12-04-73 not now included inthis release. This concert comes from two-track tapes. The sounddoesn't have the "openess" and dimensionality of other Dead releases. Saying that, this is probably the best sounding two-track recordings you'll ever hear. Tracks range from"Me and Bobby McGhee" to "Row Jimmy" to "China Cat Sunflower" to "Playing In the Band" to "Weather Report Suite" to "Truckin'" to "Promised Land" to "Dark Star"-those familiar with the band will get the picture.

Let's get it out right now - this will probably stand as one of the finest "live" sets the group has ever released. However, it'sa different group than from even a year or so ago. A listen to the lengthy DARK STAR on this set is DARK STAR but it's something else too. Read on.

These recordings are testament to the growthof the Grateful Dead. Often dismissed as stuck in the "sixties",the Dead had quietly continued to evolve. Gone are the totally psychedelic flashes found in their own, and in others,compositions. Yes, the Garcia knife-edge guitar sound, the under-pinning yetout-front bass work of Lesh, the drum/percussion foundation of Kreutzmann,and the subtle keyboards of Keith Godchaux are all present. But there is something more - the Dead have matured, moved onin their playing. As I wrote, listen to DARK STAR on disc nine.Compare it to other recordings from even a year previously. It'sDARK STAR but it's also something else entirely. Even given the nature of the band to constantly improvise - this is something new.

This set (the only one the band played at Winterland in 1973) shows a "newer" Dead - one that's totally at ease within a number of genres -- especially their take on country music. The bandsounds very at ease with this new approach to their music which becomes apparent from the start of this release. The musical peaksand valleys the Dead like to travel through are still there butthere are subtle changes at work. The acid-twinkle, the tricks and turnarounds within the compositions are still there, but thereis a maturity, a subtle,more straight forward shifting of approach to their music. A shift that only a band who has been togetherfor a number of years, that have had it's share of ups and downs,is capable of.

The band's identity was changing and growing.A close look at the song titles show that most of the compositions are relatively new,but are songs the band would continue to play -- by and large -- into the future. This growth was self-induced but was also forced on them as their world (and ours) changed -sometimes for better, sometimes not. It's interesting to note that it was only a year (1972) past when the Dead played in Europe(documented on EUROPE '72 and other sets) playing pretty much their then standard set. Then change became evident in the band. Their new studio album, WAKE OF THE FLOOD, was released in 1973, prior to this three night stand. Also in 1973 the band played at thegiant Watkins Glen venue to many hundreds of thousands of people- which left an impression on the band. It was also the year that Ron "Pigpen" McKernan died, which was a blow not only to the band as a whole, but to Garcia, who considered Pigpen to be the defacto leader of the group. Bob Weir was coming to the forefront, both on vocals and song writing. All of these things had an effecton the band's playing.

In listening to this set, there is noreal immediate feel of "gotcha" within a lot of their new material that the Dead, in earlier years, were known for. The band, bothin feel and in actual tempo, seem to be holding back, and holding back-- until there is finally a release of musical energy. Theplaying, as a whole, is much better, more "professional" (a funnyword for the Dead), but the fireworks, the sense of wild abandonment of the past seems to be gone to some extent. Don't get me wrong - this is one of my favorite sets from the band. I'm basing this on having heard the band, both live (those were the days) andon record from the days when they had just changed their name from The Warlocks to the Grateful Dead. From the days when Garcia didn't have a beard, up through hearing them in 1973. There are plenty of transcendent moments captured on these discs. More maturedefinitely, but still containing that "good old Grateful Dead" sound and musical trickery they are known for.

If you're new tothe Dead experience, you should probably look elsewhere if you want to know what the Dead were like early on. If you're a long time listener - this will do nicely.

The packaging is sumptuous- a box about five by five inches with a folding lid. Each disc is in it's own cardboard sleeve in a tri-fold booklet. Included isa Grateful Dead pin and a folded mailer with verse and a cartoon. The booklet is informative about both the era and this collection. There is even an explanation on the technology used on theserecordings. All in all a nice presentation.

To back up my point about how the band has changed, I played a number of tracks from both the Fillmore in 1969 and tracks from Europe in 1972, thenlistened to this collection. It's proof positive of, if I may usea much quoted phrase,"what a long strange trip it's been". And it's a trip with this releases help that listeners will want to take again and again. Get it while you can. This is a warm, fine release. It's like getting a gift from friends.

Great Music, Weak Engineering, May 27, 2009
By james

I just bought this set from Amazon for [...], which is the right price for this product. Anything much more and you are subject to the problem that loyal Grateful Dead fans share--we arelikely to buy anything the Band and Rhino issues, almost regardless of the price. First the good news. The set lists from these 1973 shows are wonderful, and the performances themselves are excellent, from an excellent year for the Band. All the classics fromthis period are here, and of course comparing the three shows isgreat fun. The Saturday night effort is particularly stellar. Nowthe bad news. Take very seriously the subtle warning that theseconcerts were recorded on two-track tape. Even the recent engineering efforts to bring these tapes alive are disappointing. Although the sound from the instruments is acceptably clear, the Band'svoices are mostly lost in the mix. Bobby, in particular, soundslike he is singing in a long, distant, tunnel. The packaging cannot make up for the sound. Imagine some of the weaker engineeringefforts from "Dick's Picks" or "Road Trips," and you get the idea. If you want to hear the Dead at Winterland from this time period, you are much better off buying the five-CD Dead "Movie Soundtrack" from 1974. You will save a lot of money, hear the same songs, and benefit from superior engineering and recording technology.

Note: Since I wrote this review, Rhino and the Band issued their Winterland 1977 three-night CD set. This is a magnificant collection that is constantly on my CD player. There are none of thesound/recording problems that I found on the 1973 set, which I never listen to anymore. 5 stars. You will truly enjoy listening to this collection!

Stash Box Dead, April 7, 2009

This nine CD set of a three night run at Winterland, San Francisco is the type of release the Deadheads have been shouting for....well, for years now. 1973, was a transitional year in GD history.On March 8, news of the passing of Pigpen, meant that the old days were now gone forever. The band, played gigs mostly on the east coast of the USA, with only two shows played in the Bay Area, prior to this Winterland stand. "Bear's Choice" was released in July. Taken from The Fillmore East shows of Feb 1970, "Choice" wasas close to a tribute for Pigpen, that the band would ever bringout. "Bear's Choice" also completed The Grateful Dead's commitment to Warner Brothers Records, and in October, "Wake Of The Flood"became the first release from Grateful Dead Records.

Away from home since May, this November three night stand at Winterland is a begining of sorts. Along with the new songs from WOTF, the style of the band's playing had evolved yet again with a more jazzinflunced sound.

With tunes such as: "Eyes Of The World" & "Weather Report Suite," The Dead, approached this new music with a confident swing & swagger. Old chestnuts such as: "Dark Star" and"Playing In The Band" take on brand new forms and shapes, and deep space is reached in their center.

Old favorites: "Truckin","Uncle John's Band" and "Sugar Magnolia" can be found right herein this box, but like newer tunes: "Row Jimmy" and "Stella Blue"they are used as ingredients in this great big musical stew pot.These shows are amongst some of the longest concerts that the band would perform. 1973, is considered by many to one of the very best years of live Grateful Dead music. These nine CD's will beginto define just what all the fuss is about.

This Winterland box was originally released by The Grateful Dead, at their officalwebsite in March, 2008. An extra "bonus" disc from Cincinnati Gardens, Ohio, 4 December 1973, was a part of that package. That extra CD, was a wonderful addition, to an already good box set. Thatbonus disc, still recieves lot's of play on my CD machine...but,alas it is NOT included herein.

This Winterland box, is accurate document of live GD music as performed almost 36 years ago. The "Stash Box" package is nice as well. The Dead Head mailer, circa October 73, is a nice touch as well. This is a very nice package containing over ten hours of vintage Grateful Dead music. ThisWinterland run, proves why it takes more than just one concert,to absorb, this beast we call The Grateful Dead. For the faithfulfollowers of these live GD shows, we now have three COMPLETE shows to dig into. This is a great box taken from a key period of live Grateful Dead music. The "bonus" CD is sorely missed here.
Four Stars !!!

Posted on May 19, 2013 7:24:09 AM PDT

Why four stars instead of five, especially since '73 isone of the indisputably great live Dead years, the concerts arecomplete, the packaging is sumptuous, and as far as I can tell you suggest no negative criticism of the performances or the soundquality?

I take your ratings seriously because they aren't just expressions of enthusiasm. But I can't tell what's holding youback on this one.

My favorite years of the Dead are '74 and '77 with Dick's Picks 7 (Alexandra Palace) and 10 (Winterland) being my two desert island Dead sets. But recently I've been listening to Dick's Picks 19 and 28, both wonderful (especially 19--Garcia at his most delicate), both from 1973.

I agree with your characterization of the '73 Dead, so I'm wondering if there are other legit live '73 CD sets to pursue first or if this Winterland box set is all I need from that year's Dead.

In reply to an earlier post on May 19, 2013 9:14:07 AM PDT
Philip S. Wolf says:

eurocrank ~

My rating system has four-stars as excellent and this set merits those four-stars.

(For me) five-stars means all-out cannot-live-without classic record.

Ya' cannot give outfive-stars very often as it isn't deserved in most cases and I would not do that here as this is an honest four-star release. "Dave's Pick - Vol. 5" was the best set I have heard from 1973 and Idid give that set a five-star rating because it is a classic allthe way. I have reviewed all six of the "Dave's Picks" sets.

My favorite live Grateful Dead year is 1977 with 1972 a close second and the new box entitled: "May 77" looks really nice and I can't wait to review it next month. Will it knock my socks off?

Now's The Time, July 5, 2009
By over and under

Not since the death of Jerry Garcia has there been a better time to be a fan of the Grateful Dead: Dick's Picks has grown beyond all expectation; the internet has connected fans like never before; and the band itself is back on tour and has made every effort to flood the market with studio quality recordingsof pivotal shows from its storied past.

Which way to turn? Which shows to jump on? Our plates are so full deciding is nearly atorment, but these legendary recordings are a good starting point for any fan who wants to know what all the fuss was about.

On the whole, Winterland is a fascinating document, a three-day run portraying a band in an ever evolving state of transition. Thesound is so good you'll have a hard time believeing it was recorded on 2-track, but that's a testament to David Lemieux (and RhinoRecords) whose talent and meticulous care of the vaults are fully realized on this release.

Last but not least, the packaging.Normally I don't comment on the superficial aesthetic of any release, but the presentation is sumptuous and the linear notes, along with old-time playbills, give these Winterland recordings a sense of a specific time and place, taking our tickets and usheringus through the door just minutes before the band takes the stage.

I wish all box sets were like this.

Don't hesitate if you have the means, February 9, 2013
By jam2009 "Jm" (Western Mass.)

There's already a lot of greatreviews and breakdown of this box set. I agree with most that this collection sounds great and covers the dead again playing in apeak period. Like most who listen to the whole body of the dead,we all have periods that we prefer more than others. Personally,I find that not being that excited about some periods, makes itinteresting, as I'll come across something that I'd had low expectations for and have my eyes forced open again with just how talented the dead were, even at times where their pilot light seemedto just flickering.

With that being, 72-74 are very special years in my love of the dead. Not that I hold these as their best,but any arguement of their pinnacle years must include these years. For me 73 holds a special spot, as it was a time that Keith vaulted forward and became a much larger presence in their sound. He had a role in the 72 shows, but on most nights, he's in the background and seemingly searching for a role that the band felt comfortable with.

Jerry's sound will always be a signature that the band will be associated with and justifiably so. He single handily created an aura and mood that one a few others have ever approached with any instrument. He however, needed musicians aroundhim to stimulate his senses to explore new territories. This is not to take anything away from his Bandmates, they were the perfect fit and all seemed to explore new directions that only got better and better. Which brings me to Keith. For the life of me I cannot figure out why some have a hard time with his contributions.All the others in the band have garnered mostly untarnished status and appropriatly so, but Keith has always seemed to the one some find fault with. Maybe, it was his slow decline, before being thrown out the band, but I for one love his playing and always seek out shows where he has a big role. Which brings this review tothis 3 show collection.

These shows collectively are awesome.The sound is clean, separated and warm. The band is in full confidence of their sound and you can almost feel how much fun they were having in challenging themselves to find new magic in almost every song. Keith is no longer a support player, but fully integrated and allowed to drive the lead in numerous songs. I'll admit,I have a very soft spot for great keyboards and Keith has alwaysbeen one of my favorite players. This is not to say he was the main focus of these recordings, only that the dead had added another layer where they could continue to expand their sound. These sets cover most of their standard greats of their catalog and you would be well suited to have this as group if you could only havea limited collection. I realize the cost at one pop is steep, butworth saving for especially if you are interested in hearing thedead in the zone.

strong box set of shows, May 30, 2009
By grew up in the 1960s (usa)

how much would you pay to take a trip back in time to hear these concerts? because that's what you get for your money here. over the course of this weekend's 3 shows in 11/73 you hear virtually everything the dead were playing at the time. the band was in top form.some fans have complained about the sound quality of these recordings but to my ruined old ears the sound quality of the box set is for the most part excellent. at one point during the friday night show bob weir does say "lets hear it for the new microphone".so probably they were having some microphone problems friday night. but i think the overall strength of the performances and the energy level of the shows make up for any such problems. i also think 59.99 is a fair price for this box set of 3 full, 3 hour shows on 9 cds. this weekend in 73 the dead were at the top of theirgame. jerry and the band were still young and strong, if not quite as psychedelic as they once were. this is the coke and weed (hash) fueled, not the acid fueled grateful dead. still, i say if you are a big dead fan don't miss this, get it while you can. and of course the 5 cd (7 hours) grateful dead movie soundtrack is a tremendous bargain and one of the best grateful dead releases everput out. i strongly recommend you don't miss that one either. also, fans of this era grateful dead should check out dick's picksvol. 31. it's an almost 5 hour compilation from 8/4/74- 8/6/74 on4 discs with brilliant playing and jamming on every disc. i hadalways thought the dead reached their peak in 1969-70 but obviously i was wrong. they continued to perform at a very, very high level for many years after that.

1.15:38    Weather Report Suite (Live at Winterland, San Francisco, CA --11-09-1973)
2.16:44    Eyes Of The World (Live at Winterland, San Francisco, CA -- 11-09-1973)
3.5:58    China Doll (Live at Winterland, San Francisco, CA -- 11-09-1973)
4.5:05    Around And Around (Live at Winterland, San Francisco, CA -- 11-09-1973)
5.8:02    Goin' Down The Road Feeling Bad (Live at Winterland, San Francisco, CA -- 11-09-1973)
6.4:23    Johnny B. Goode (Live at Winterland, San Francisco, CA -- 11-09-1973)

Category: rock - Discid: 4b0d1506

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