Fillmore West 1969

( 3 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - William Pearl
Released in 1969, Live/Dead was the Grateful Dead’s first live recording and cemented their growing national reputation as one of the most inspired and adventurous rock bands. Featuring long jams on such classic Dead material as “St. Stephen,” The Eleven,” “Dark Star,“ and the blues classics “Death Don’t Have No Mercy” and “Turn On Your Love Light,” it captured the San Francisco septet in peak form, highlighting the gloriously creative interplay between Jerry Garcia’s lead guitar and the thick, swirling textures of the rest of the band. With two drummers, vocalist Pig Pen, and keyboardist Tom Constanten onboard, the Dead were a mighty performing unit that breathed as ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - William Pearl
Released in 1969, Live/Dead was the Grateful Dead’s first live recording and cemented their growing national reputation as one of the most inspired and adventurous rock bands. Featuring long jams on such classic Dead material as “St. Stephen,” The Eleven,” “Dark Star,“ and the blues classics “Death Don’t Have No Mercy” and “Turn On Your Love Light,” it captured the San Francisco septet in peak form, highlighting the gloriously creative interplay between Jerry Garcia’s lead guitar and the thick, swirling textures of the rest of the band. With two drummers, vocalist Pig Pen, and keyboardist Tom Constanten onboard, the Dead were a mighty performing unit that breathed as one. Fillmore West 1969: The Complete Recordings is a three-CD set that adds three more hours of recorded material from the weekend run that originally produced Live/Dead. The new tracks are thrilling additions, particularly the extended versions of "That's It for the Other One," "Cryptical Envelopment," "The Other One," and "Alligator," all of which find the band driving the songs as far as their forms will allow -- and then pushing beyond that. The blues-based material (“I’m a King Bee”) and folk material (“Mountains of the Moon”) add dimension to the original album, giving a clearer representation of the full scope of the group at the time. The Grateful Dead went on to greater fame and fortune soon after Live/Dead made its appearance, but Fillmore West 1969: The Complete Recordings suggests that this may have been the apex of the band’s creativity.
All Music Guide - Lindsay Planer
This is a triple-disc distillation of the limited-edition ten-CD Fillmore West 1969: The Complete Recordings box set. The material was taken from the Grateful Dead's run of eight shows over four nights February 27 through March 2, 1969 at the Fillmore West in San Francisco. These were the same concerts that yielded most of the definitive Live/Dead 1969. By the spring of 1969, the ever-evolving personnel had grown to include Mickey Hart percussion -- whose contributions began in September of 1967 -- and six months later, Tom Constanten keyboards. They joined co-founders Jerry Garcia guitar/vocals, Ron "Pigpen" McKernan vocals/organ/harmonica, Bill Kreutzmann percussion, Phil Lesh bass/vocals, and Bob Weir guitar/vocals. Collectively they created an incendiary ensemble embracing R&B with the same passion and sense of intrepid experimentation as they did their own unique imprint of sonic psychedelia. And nowhere is that seemingly odd amalgam as evident as it is here. According to Dennis McNally's liner essay, Live/Dead was "the first live 16-track album ever made." Three and a half decades later those tapes were revisited and revitalized by longtime Grateful Dead producer Jeffrey Norman. He has done a yeoman's effort, drawing out the warmth and subtle interplay occurring deep within not only the lengthy acidic "That's It for the Other One" suite, but the exhaustively jammed covers of "Good Morning Little School Girl," "Turn on Your Lovelight," and "Morning Dew" as well. Somewhat darker yet no less intense is the edgy update of blues staple "King Bee" and the sanctified "Death Don't Have No Mercy." The latter was one of several Rev. Gary Davis compositions that the Dead worked into their repertoire over the years. Although it hadn't even been released at the time, Aoxomoxoa 1969 produced a sizable number of selections here. Notable among them are "Doin' That Rag," "Cosmic Charlie," "Saint Stephen," and "Dupree's Diamond Blues" -- a tune twisted out of the traditional ballad "Betty & Dupree." Another title that surfaced on Aoxomoxoa was the stylish, acoustic-based "Mountains of the Moon." The combo took full advantage of the song's meditative ending to segue into the lysergic-influenced exploratory anthem "Dark Star." As alluded to above, the audio remastering is virtually perfect. One major caveat can be heard during the nearly half-hour instrumental "Jam" on disc three. According to Norman, the master tape ran out and "the only thing we had as a patch was a cassette...mix from the show. So when I edit in the cassette piece...the end result is like a big ol' audio band-aid." While that isn't the sole place that similar problems had to be addressed, it is the most noticeable. That said, the drastic change in sound quality is a small price to pay in order to hear the performance in its entirety.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/1/2005
  • Label: Grateful Dead / Wea
  • UPC: 081227319328
  • Catalog Number: 73193
  • Sales rank: 494

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Grateful Dead Primary Artist
Mickey Hart Drums
Jerry Garcia Guitar, Vocals
Bob Weir Guitar, Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
Tom Constanten Organ
Bill Kreutzmann Drums
Phil Lesh Electric Bass, Bass Guitar, Vocals
Ron "Pigpen" McKernan Organ, Harmonica, Percussion, Vocals
Technical Credits
Grateful Dead Arranger, Composer
Deadric Malone Composer
Bob Matthews Engineer
James Moore Composer
Jeffrey Norman Producer, Mastering, Audio Production
Sonny Boy Williamson I Composer
Betty Cantor Engineer
Joseph Scott Composer
Traditional Composer
Cameron Sears Executive Producer
David Lemieux Producer, Audio Production
Dennis McNally Liner Notes
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2013

    To Paul_Hochman this isn't the Complete Fillmore West 1969 Recor

    To Paul_Hochman this isn't the Complete Fillmore West 1969 Recordings. That was actually released as a limited edition ten cd box set by the Grateful Dead in November of 2005. This is a 3cd set of the highlights from that 10cd box set that is no longer available. Still an amazing 3cd set. 

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Long Live the Dead!

    The band were at the height of their powers in 1969 and the great Pigpen was still with us. This legendary run, captured complete here, comes close to explaining the unexplainable force that was the Grateful Dead.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Essential for any Deadhead

    This isn't for everyone, but if your a Deadhead, you must get this. It has terrific versions of 'Lovelight' and 'The Other One' and so much more. This is might be all the early live dead you'll need.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews