Grateful Dead

Workingman's Dead

Workingman's Dead


Set One

Uncle John's Band 284


High Time 312


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Dire Wolf 191


New Speedway Boogie 244


Cumberland Blues 194


Black Peter 341


Easy Wind 297


Casey Jones 264


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New Speedway Boogie 246


Dire Wolf 151


Black Peter 547


Easy Wind 489


Cumberland Blues 292


Mason's Children 392


Uncle John's Band 411


Radio Spot 31


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Show Notes
  • Workingman's Dead - Grateful Dead (Warner Bros. WS 1869)
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  • The Dead:
    Jerry Garcia - guitars, pedal steel, vocals, songwriter
    Bob Weir - guitar, vocals
    Ron "Pigpen" McKernan - keyboards, vocals
    Phil Lesh - bass, guitar, piano, vocals
    Bill Kreutzmann - percussion
    Mickey Hart - percussion, engineer, mixing, sound design

  • Full album download includes Bonus Material:
    New Speedway Boogie (Alternate Mix)
    Dire Wolf (6/27/69 Veteran's Memorial Hall, Santa Rosa, CA)
    Black Peter (1/10/70 Golden Hall Community Concourse, San Diego, CA)
    Easy Wind (1/16/70 Springer's Ballroom, Portland, OR)
    Cumberland Blues (1/17/70 Oregon State University Gym)
    Mason's Children (1/24/70 Civic Auditorium, Honolulu, HI)
    Uncle John's Band (12/23/70 Winterland, San Francisco, CA)
    Radio Promo

  • Released on June 14, 1970

  • The album was recorded at the Pacific High Recording Studio, which was located in back of the Fillmore West. Pacific High had a 50 by 50 foot recording space, with 14 foot ceilings, two isolation booths, and much of the equipment built by Ron Wickersham. The sessions started in mid-February, 1970, the album was recorded over a nine day period, and mixed in the first week or two of April, 1970. For the recording sessions, the band was arranged in a half-circle around the drums, resulting in some leakage of the instruments. The songs intended for the album were rehearsed in one to two days, then
    re-arranged to have a beginning of Side 1, end of Side 1, a beginning of Side 2, and a finale.

  • "Mason's Children" was recorded for this album but was not released; it was intended to be the closing song on the album. It is included here as a bonus track.

  • An alternate version of "New Speedway Boogie", with Weir singing falsetto, also included here.

  • On "Cumberland Blues", David Nelson plays a Martin D-18 acoustic guitar from 1940; it had been previously owned by Garcia, who traded it for a Weymann banjo from the Lundberg music store in Berkeley.

  • Garcia plays a Martin D-28 on "Black Peter".

  • Garcia also played a Martin D-18 acoustic guitar and a ZB pedal steel guitar.

  • "Uncle John's Band" contains a fragment of a Bulgarian tune, music to which Garcia was listening at the time.

  • "Dire Wolf" was recorded on February 16, 1970. "Dire Wolf" was written while Robert Hunter and Jerry Garcia were sharing a house on 271 Madrone, in Larkspur, California. The "...please, don't murder me..." lines in "Dire Wolf" were inspired by the "Zodiac Killer", who murdered over a score of people in San Francisco between 1968 and 1978.

  • The "driving that train, high on cocaine, Casey Jones you better watch your speed" lines in "Casey Jones" had been written down by Hunter in his notebook; he later re-discovered the lines and used them as the hook in the song.

  • Produced by Bob Matthews and Betty Cantor

  • (notes excerpted with permission from "The Compleat Grateful Dead Discography" by Ihor Slabicky)
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