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Dead of the Day: March 7, 1970

Santa Monica Civic Auditorium
Santa Monica, California
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We go back to March 7, 1970 for our Dead of the Day. This is a hot show with some ridiculous jamming; the boys blaze away in a manner not often heard, absolutely sick with intensity and speed without a moment of noodling. The Black Peter and High Time early in the set are both fabulous renditions with a nice, short China> Rider in between. But the real fireworks begin as the band launches into a feverish jam that evolves into Not Fade Away then departs into a rolling, thunderous, unstoppable drums. On the other side of that we have another great jam in Good Lovin’, topped only by Pig’s awesome vocals. The Other One continues the fire, building with each turn until the boys cascade back into NFA again. Then, Pig comes out front once more for a massive, juicy Lovelight.

There is only one recording from this night in existence, with the possible exception of a nice soundboard sitting in the vault. The copy that we have before us is a rather raw audience tape with only mediocre sound quality and a few huge cuts (see the incredibly attenuated Dire Wolf for example). But what the recording lacks in pristine crispness, it totally makes up for by placing you in the midst of the crowd, shaking your bones next to other die-hard Deadheads, hooting at Jerry’s guitar licks (as a number of people do rather epically in the midst of the Other One), and probably getting annoyed by the people talking during Lovelight. The tape gives you some flavor of what it must have been like to take in a Dead show in the band's prime or, if you had the privilege of being at a show in the early years, reminding you of the magic of doing so. And that, along with the mere fact that it is the only record we have of this evening with the band, is what makes this tape so special.

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