On this date in 1972 the Grateful Dead kicked off their their first-ever European tour with a gig at the Wembley Empire Pool in Wembley, England. The historic 22-date run, which was Pigpen’s last with the band, brought the Dead’s powerful live shows and unique brand of cosmic Americana music to virtually all new audiences at venues across Western Europe. Highlights from the tour, which captured by a 16-track recorder, was originally released as a 17-track, triple live album in the fall of ’72. Now, some 39 years later, Rhino in conjunction with the Grateful Dead will put out arguably the most ambitious live archive release ever, with an all-encompassing box set that documents the tour in its entirety, featuring every note all of 22 shows, totaling over 70 hours of music, spread across a whopping 72 discs.
While the initial drool-inducing limited-edition steamer trunk version of this mammoth set sold out within four days, those still wanting to get their hands on all of this music can purchase Europe ’72: The Complete Recordings – All The Music Edition, which will feature each show in its own individual package, complete with liner notes by Dead scholars such as David Gans, Blair Jackson, Steve Silberman, Gary Lambert and others.
As a way of marking the milestone anniversary of the Dead playing their first show of this historic tour, we’ve got a special Europe ’72 edition of our long-standing Everybody Wins When We Plug Something And In Return They Offer Us Free Shit To Give Away program. We’re giving away an impressive Europe ’72 themed prize pack to one lucky reader that includes a copy of the original 2-CD set and more. To enter, simply leave a comment below telling us about your favorite show from the Europe ’72 run. Bear in mind, those found entering more than once will be tarred and feathered. All entries must be received by Monday, April 18th, at 11:59PM EST. We’ll pick the winner randomly shortly thereafter.
Here’s the full rundown on our Europe ’72 Prize Pack:
- Europe ’72 (Original Album 2-CD set)
- Europe ’72 Ice Cream Kid Sticker
- Europe ’72 Grey Tee (LG)
- Europe ’72 Rainbow Foot Button
- Official GD 2011 Calendar
- Grateful Dead Now Playing New York Historical Society Poster
READ ON to check out the new Europe ’72 widget…