Saturday, March 5, 2011


“The group’s most exotic gig in 1971 was a one-shot in France,” Grateful Dead historian Blair Jackson wrote in Garcia: An American Life.

According to Jerry Garcia:

"We went over there to do a big festival, a free festival they were gonna have. We went over [at the promoter’s expense], but the festival was rained out; it flooded. We stayed at this little chateau [Chateau d’Herouville] which is owned by a film score composer who has a 16-track recording studio built into the chateau, and this is a chateau that Chopin once lived in; really old, just delightful, out in the country near the town of Auvers, which is where Vincent Van Gogh is buried…
We were there with nothing to do: France, a 16-track recording studio upstairs, all our gear, ready to play, and nothing to do. So, we decided to play at the chateau itself, out in the back, in the grass, with a swimming pool, just play into the hills. We didn’t even play to hippies, we played to a handful of townspeople in Auvers… We played and the people came - the chief of police, the fire department, just everybody. It was an event and everybody just had a hell of a time - got drunk, fell in the pool. It was great."

The Dead started to play just before the sky got dark, but their entire set was illuminated by bright lights from the Paris socialized television station Link Two, which rebroadcast the event the next week. Their film technique was flawless, as one would expect from a French film team; the camera people were completely unobtrusive on the musicians; the lights bugged Phil a little. Pig Pen just barely recovered in time to sing after downing his two bottles of duty free Wild Turkey… Weir was in fine primal scream voice, and Garcia settled into his trance like lassitude from which emanates the famous electronic genius that is particularly his.

They played for three hours, and during this time the workers and the fire department and little children lit hundreds of candles and placed them around the pool as if it were a religious shrine… a Lourdes or place of healing waters. As the party progressed, the candles were extinguished by the bodies of of various drunken celebrants being thrown in the pool by other drunken celebrants. The Dead played louder and louder; the locals had never heard anything like it before and they were delirious.

Disc 1

101. Truckin’
102. Loser
103. Me & Bobby McGee
104. Next Time You See Me
105. Morning Dew
106. Me & My Uncle
107. Hard To Handle
108. China Cat Sunflower
109. I Know You Rider
110. The Promised Land
111. Deal

Disc 2

201. Playing in the Band
202. Big Boss Man
203. Black Peter
204. Bertha
205. Casey Jones
206. That’s It For The Other One
207. Wharf Rat
208. Sugar Magnolia
209. Sing Me Back Home
210. Johnny B Goode

Jerry Garcia - lead guitar, vocals
Phil Lesh - bass, vocals
Bob Weir - guitar, vocals
Ron “Pigpen” McKernan - keyboards, percussion, vocals
Bill Kreutzmann - drums


Anonymous said...

hey thanks a lot for this run of really good GD concerts, I have a few already but lots are new to me including this one. Unfortunately it does not download (well it gets to 34% and then stops), any chance of a repost? Thanks a lot for all the great stuff you have put up over the last few months, greatly appreciated

24HRDEJAVU said...

anon I checked this download and had no problem
keep on tryin' sometimes mega upload has it's moments

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