Grateful Dead Premieres 'Uncle John's Band' Live Cut From New Box Set: Exclusive

Grateful Dead
Bob Minkin

Grateful Dead

Plus, Dead & Company reveal more 2015 tour dates.

We’ve got some new developments in the Grateful Dead universe today -- part 40 years old, part brand new.

Billboard is excited to premiere a live cut from the Dead’s forthcoming box set, 30 Trips Around The Sun. It’s “Uncle John’s Band,” a track from the 1970 album Workingman's Dead, performed in 1974 at Paris’ at Parc des Expositions. Check it out below:


Jesse Jarnow describes the cut in the box set’s liner notes: 

An instant Deadhead favorite and longterm FM radio staple, the band reserved "Uncle John's Band" for big late show moments beginning soon after its late 1969 debut. Trekking through Europe with the enormous Wall of Sound speaker array -- sent over by ship with a large stash of the band's pot supplies -- the band themselves were on the verge of retiring from the road indefinitely (or so they thought). But, playing to a few hundred people in the French countryside seemed to give energy to the road-weary ensemble and, in Dijon, "Uncle John's Band" made a rare show-opening appearance in front of the tiniest Dead audience in years. The band shifts effortlessly into the jam and the music stretches casually, suggesting a number of spaces and possibilities, as if bookmarking them for the mammoth second set to come, from Garcia's pointing solos to the cooly locked-in spaciousness discovered by Messrs. Weir, Lesh, Godchaux, and Kreutzmann just before the vocal coda.

The Grateful Dead Is Resurrected Once More, This Time With John Mayer: Exclusive 

30 Trips Around The Sun is the Grateful Dead’s biggest box set yet. It celebrates their 50th anniversary and comes as either an 80-disc collection (also available on flash drive) or a condensed four-CD set. Both contain material from 30 previously unreleased concerts over their entire career. It hits stores Sept. 18 via Rhino. 

And the present-day news? Dead & Company -- that’s the surviving members, minus Phil Lesh and plus John Mayer -- have announced a slate of live dates for 2015’s fourth quarter. The band features Dead members Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, and Bob Weir, along with Mayer, Allman Brothers’ bassist Oteil Burbridge and keyboardist Jeff Chimenti (Fare Thee Well, RatDog). Check out the dates below.

Oct. 29: Albany, NY (Times Union Center)
Oct. 31: New York City, NY (Madison Square Garden)
Nov. 1: New York City, NY (Madison Square Garden)
Nov. 5: Philadelphia, PA (Wells Fargo Center)
Nov. 6: Washington, DC (Verizon Center)
Nov. 10: Worcester, MA (DCU Center)
Dec. 27: San Francisco, CA (Bill Graham Civic Auditorium)
Dec. 28: San Francisco, CA (Bill Graham Civic Auditorium)
Dec. 30: Los Angeles, CA (The Forum)
Dec. 31: Los Angeles, CA (The Forum)


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