It’s mid-summer, and that means the world needs a little Grateful Dead to help the sun shine a little brighter and the twilight last a little longer. And why have one when you can have two? These three classic one-two-punch pairings all come from one of my favorite tours, one that is too often overlooked, Spring 1978.
The first song duo comes from 4/15/78 at William and Mary, the soaring second set opening Bertha > Good Lovin’ a prime example, from Garcia’s sweetness to Phil’s intro to Bobby’s cresting howl. The second coupling of Lazy Lightning > Supplication is the first set closer from 4/18/78 in Pittsburgh, kind of a rowdy performance with some nice guitar and drumming on the transition.
The final segued pair comes from my favorite Dead show, the sterling 4/16/78 in Huntington, West Virginia. Let’s check out the second to last song of first set, Scarlet > Fire, which is simply glistening perfection. In fact the whole show is stunning, with what may be the best single performance of Peggy-O, a great Jack Straw opener, and a killer suite starting with Estimated > Eyes in the second set. They just know how to do it right in the Mountain State (with a tip of the hat to my friends in WV and this weekend’s All Good festival). Enjoy!