Tour Itinerary posts I have talked about even shorter periods of time, with the intent of creating a narrative that describes the Grateful Dead's activity during that window. This post is more of a simple list, however, to use as an anchor for research. My plan is to keep these lists up to date on an ongoing basis. Please suggest any additions, corrections or reservations in the Comments. For other posts listing Grateful Dead performances, see the link here. This post will list Grateful Dead performance dates from July through December of 1967.
|The Stanford Daily of July 4, 1974, featured an article about the free Be-In at El Camino Park in Palo Alto on July 2.|
Using equipment that they "borrowed" from the Monterey Pop Festival, the Dead played a free concert back in Palo Alto. I had thought that this concert was on Saturday, June 24, but an article in the Stanford Daily confirmed the date of Sunday, July 2. The Anonymous Artists Of America included Jerry Garcia's wife Sara (they were now separated), and future New Riders David Nelson and Dave Torbert were in the New Delhi River Band.
July 13, 1967 PNE Agrodome, Vancouver, BC: Grateful Dead/Daily Flash/Love-In
The Agrodome was Vancouver's largest venue. "Love-In" may refer to a title to the event, not a band. The Daily Flash were a popular psychedelic Seattle band.
July 14-15, 1967 Dante's Inferno, Vancouver, BC: Grateful Dead/Collectors/Painted Ship
Dante's Inferno, at 1024 Davie Street, would later become more famous as The Retinal Circus, Vancouver's principal psychedelic ballroom. Both opening acts were British Columbia bands. The Collectors evolved into the 70s group Chilliwack, named after a Vancouver suburb.
July 16, 1967 Golden Gardens Beach, Seattle, WA; Grateful Dead (afternoon free concert)
Golden Gardens Park is in Ballard, a neighborhood of Seattle. I do not know if the Dead actually played on a beach at the park (the park is on Puget Sound). I would expect they played on a grassy field rather than a beach. During 1967, the Dead tried to play outdoor free concerts in as many cities as possible, a strategy that paid massive dividends many years later. Golden Gardens is not far from El Roach, where the Dead played on August 20, 1969, when they were rained out of the Aqua Theater.
July 16, 1967 Eagles Auditorium, Seattle, WA: Grateful Dead/Daily Flash/Magic Fern
The Eagles Auditorium was at 1416 7th Avenue, at Union Street. It had been built in 1924 for The Fraternal Order Of The Eagles. By 1967, it had become Seattle's principal psychedelic ballroom, and The Daily Flash were regular headliners there. The Magic Fern were another Seattle-area band.
|The Portland Art Museum today, at 1119 SW Park, now known as The Mark building. It was the site of the Masonic Temple, where the Grateful Dead played on July 18, 1967 (photo M.O. Stevens, from Wikipedia)|
The Masonic Temple was at 1119 SW Park Avenue. The building was on the same block as the Portland Art Museum. One floor of the Masonic Temple was a ballroom that could be rented, and it was used for rock concerts in the 1960s. The then-small Portland market was useful for weeknight gigs in between California and Seattle. The Masonic Temple show was on a Tuesday night, and the opening acts were all local Portland bands. In 1992, the Portland Art Museum bought the Temple, and ultimately merged the buildings, an the ballroom is now part of the Portland Art Museum.
July 21-22, 1967 Continental Ballroom, Santa Clara, CA: Grateful Dead/Sons Of Champlin/Congress of Wonders/Phoenix
The Continental Ballroom, under various names, was the primary rock venue in the San Jose area in the 1960s. However, since it was never under the aegis of a single promoter, it was far less celebrated than places like the Fillmore or the Avalon. Nonetheless, there were lots of great events at the Continental, and plenty of them involved the Grateful Dead. The arena was a former roller skating rink, and the Warlocks had played there in 1965 when it was called the Continental Roller Bowl. The Continental was at 1600 Martin Avenue in Santa Clara, actually a suburb of San Jose, but generally part of the San Jose downtown.
In the Summer of '67, Quicksilver manager Ron Polte booked the Continental for several weekends that featured all the best San Francisco rock bands. San Jose and its suburbs had a huge indigenous teenage rock market, but all of them must have been happy to see the Fillmore bands nearby. At the time, the Sons Of Champlin, Congress Of Wonders (a comedy group) and Phoenix were all affiliated with Ron Polte's booking agency.
July 23, 1967 Straight Theater, San Francisco, CA: Grateful Dead/Big Brother and The Holding Company/Wildflower/Phoenix
The Haight Theater had been an old 1500-seat movie theater in the heart of the Haight Ashbury, at 1702 Haight Street (at Cole). It had been a rehearsal hall for the Grateful Dead and other bands in early 1966, and plans were afoot to turn it into a performance venue. However, the process had been delayed by city officials who refused to approve the new Straight Theater for a "Dance Permit," an antiquated means of city control that stemmed from Prohibition days.
However, the Straight had a debut weekend on July 21-23, with the Dead and Big Brother headlining on Sunday July 23. Quicksilver Messenger Service (Friday July 21) and Country Joe And The Fish (Saturday July 22) headlined the other nights. A tape circulates with Neal Cassady rapping over a "Lovelight" style jam. However, the issue of the Dance Permit was not yet resolved, and any dancers could potentially be subject to arrest (this was not a joke--it would actually have been illegal and dancers would be subject to arrest, no small thing to a hippie with a few joints in his pocket).
July 31-August 5, 1967 O'Keefe Centre, Toronto, ON: Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead/Luke And The Apostles Bill Graham Presents the San Francisco Scene (matinees Wed Aug 2 and Sat Aug 5)
The ever innovative Bill Graham tried to take San Francisco on the road in the Summer of '67. He took the Jefferson Airplane and the Grateful Dead to Canada, with posters that said "Bill Graham Presents The San Francisco Scene." The two bands played the O'Keefe Centre (now the Sony Centre), Toronto's premier downtown performance venue, at 1 Front Street East. It had opened on October 1, 1960, with a capacity of 3,191. The Dead and The Airplane played six nights, from Monday through Saturday, including double-show matinees on two afternoons. Bonnie Dobson, the writer of "Morning Dew," attended one of the shows, but she was too shy to go backstage.
Opening all the shows were the Toronto band Luke And The Apostles, a happening electric blues band from the Yorkville district. Yorkville was the bohemian neighborhood in Toronto, sort of a Canadian Greenwich Village, and the locals over the years had included Neil Young, Joni Anderson (later Mitchell), Ian and Sylvia, The Sparrows (later Steppenwolf, when they went to LA) and Rick James (back when he was still just AWOL from the US Navy).
With his usual acumen, Graham had primed the pump by having the Jefferson Airplane play a free concert the week before, at Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto on July 23. Luke And The Apostles and a group called Spring Garden Road were also on hand, but the Dead were still back in San Francisco. However, in classic San Francisco fashion, the Airplane had already given their potential fans a free taste of what to expect, an absolutely unprecedented approach to promoting rock shows.
August 6, 1967 Place Ville Marie, Montreal, QC: Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead (afternoon free concert)
Montreal in the 1960s had a booming rock scene. Bill Graham came through the city with two of the hottest bands from what was the coolest city in rock at the time, and had them play a free concert downtown at lunchtime. This was unprecedented in Montreal, as it was everywhere else, giving it away for free with the implicit assumption that you couldn't resist paying for it. The only flaw in this strategy was that the Dead never played Montreal or Quebec again, and I'm pretty sure that the Airplane didn't either.
August 6, 1967 Youth Pavilion, Expo '67, Montreal, QC Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead (free concert)
The International World's Fair, known as Expo 67, was held in Montreal from April 27-October 29, 1967. By any standard, the fair was hugely successful. The Dead and The Airplane played for free outdoors at the "Youth Pavilion." The bands probably actually got paid, but as far as I know it was free for the fans, except insofar as they had had to pay for admission to the fair itself.
The Dead, being the Dead, inexplicably decided to do a runner on Graham and the Airplane, abandoning the tour. Graham and the Airplane went on to play shows in Rochester (Aug 7) and Springfield, MA (Aug 8), but the Dead had rented cars and driven to Millbrook, NY. Of course, the Dead had no money, but they had hooked up with some wealthy patrons who could finance the trip. Millbrook was the home base of Timothy Leary and his own patrons. The Dead weren't particularly sympathetic to Leary, but they could smell a good party from a few hundred miles away,
August 10, 1967 rooftop, Chelsea Hotel, New York, N:Y Grateful Dead
As part of their New York adventures, the Dead agreed to play a rooftop concert for Emmett Grogan of The Diggers. Grogan, a real character, had helped found The Diggers back in San Francisco. According to McNally (p.211), the concert on the rooftop of the Chelsea Hotel was something called Trip Without A Ticket. I have no idea how many people actually attended this event--probably not very many, but Grogan was very shrewd at creating what would now be called "free media."
August 11, 1967 Grande Ballroom, Detroit, MI: Grateful Dead/Rationals/Gang or /Southbound Freeway/Bishops
August 12, 1967 Grande Ballroom, Detroit, MI: Grateful Dead/Rationals/Gang or /Southbound Freeway/Ashmollyan Quintet/
The Grande Ballroom in Detroit had a lively rock scene that had been inspired by Detroit DJ Russ Gibb's visits to San Francisco. Starting in October 1966, The Grande was a happening underground scene, with posters and light shows rather than traditional industry support. For all it's San Francisco inspiration, however, the Detroit scene was louder and more R&B oriented than the San Francisco ballrooms. Bands like the Grateful Dead and County Joe And The Fish were just too folkie for the locals, who preferred harder rockers like the MC5. Numerous Michigan and Midwest bands made their bones at the Grande from 1966-68, and were popular throughout the region, even though they were not well known elsewhere in the country.
The handbill had Southbound Freeway with Bishops (Friday) and Ashmollyan Quintet (Saturday) opening for the Dead and The Rationals. A newspaper ad, probably produced nearer the concert, just had the Dead, The Rationals and Gang on both nights.
|A current photo of the Bandshell at West Park in Ann Arbor, MI, where the Grateful Dead played a free concert on August 13, 1987. The metal sculpture was probably not there back in the day.|
Ann Arbor, MI, home of the University of Michigan, was about 40 miles from Detroit. University of Michigan is always paired with UC Berkeley as the best public universities, and in the 60s they were also amongst the most forward looking and radical as well. There was always a lot of connections between Berkeley and Ann Arbor, in politics, music and other ways. In that respect, Ann Arbor was a far more fruitful pasture for the Dead than Detroit city.
On the Sunday following the Grande Ballroom shows, the Dead played a free concert in West Park in Ann Arbor, at 215 Chapin Street, under the bandshell. This was apparently the first outdoor free concert in Ann Arbor. McNally (p.211) reports that the free show was financed by Warner Brothers, to promote the album. Notorious Michigan radical John Sinclair was involved, so the Dead were right in the thick of the local political ferment, and there are color photos of the shows.
However, while Ann Arbor may have seemed like a perfect place for the Dead to build an audience with a free concert, a few things got in the way. The first was that the Midwestern weather in Ann Arbor is never very favorable to outdoor shows, and the August show was when school was out. Furthermore, most Ann Arbor students caught their rock shows in Detroit, so there was a lot of overlap. Thus, while I'm sure the Dead had many early adherents in Ann Arbor, those fans were more likely to move to Berkeley than build up the audience in Michigan.
August 25-26, 1967 Kings Beach Bowl, Lake Tahoe North Shore, CA: Grateful Dead/The Creators
The Grateful Dead returned to the Bay Area, and promptly spent a week in Lake Tahoe, bracketing both weekends with shows on the South and North side of the Lake. Lake Tahoe was the winter and summer playground of San Francisco and Northern California, and there was a huge teenage population on any given night from Memorial Day to Labor Day. In the 60s, there was a unique and largely forgotten rock scene in Lake Tahoe that I have explored at length. Most or all of the teenagers at Lake Tahoe would have recognized the Grateful Dead and other bands from Fillmore posters, even if they were too far from (or not allowed to go to) the Fillmore itself.
The Grateful Dead played Saturday night (August 19) playing the Legion Hall on the South Shore for operator Jim Burgett. The next weekend (August 25-26) they played the new Kings Beach Bowl in North Shore, a converted bowling alley. In between, some band members returned to San Francisco, about a five hour drive. Amazingly, Jerry Garcia and Mountain Girl went camping, at least for a few days. Jerry Garcia probably returned to the City to catch Cream at the Fillmore during this week.
There is a reference to a canceled show at Mt. Tamalpais Amphitheater on August 20, where the power was cut and no bands played, and it turned into a "boogiefest" (implying a giant drum circle). However, while the Dead may have been initially scheduled for such an event, after the July 1-2. 1967, "Festival Of Growing Things," there were no more electric rock events scheduled at Mt. Tam for decades. So while some local fans may have heard some rumors, there was no chance the Dead were going to show up.
August 28, 1967 Lindley Meadows, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, CA: Big Brother And The Holding Company/Grateful Dead Chocolate George's Funeral (free afternoon concert)
After their return to Lake Tahoe, the Dead reappeared in San Francisco for the Monday funeral of a popular Hells Angel known as Chocolate George. Big Brother and The Dead played for free, and a ceremonial funeral was held with George's casket (I do not know where he was actually buried).
It was actually a momentous week for the Grateful Dead. Old pal Robert Hunter returned to California from New Mexico, ready to accept Jerry Garcia's offer to be house lyricist. Hunter made landfall at Karl Moore's house in Palo Alto, and Phil Lesh drove down to pick him up. Meanwhile, Cream was still at the Fillmore, and Garcia found time to see them again.
The history of poster collecting has made it appear that the Dead played a show in Santa Cruz County at Cabrillo Junior College on September 2, 1967. The poster was in the book Art Of Rock, and everyone assumed that the event had occurred. In fact, although rock events had been held at the Cabrillo College football field before, I looked into it, and the show was canceled before it happened, as neither the school nor the county wanted a Monterey Pop Festival on their doorstep.
September 3, 1967 Dance Hall, Rio Nido, CA: Grateful Dead
The Grateful Dead do appear to have played a Sunday night gig at the tiny dance hall in Rio Nido, CA, a tiny unincorporated community in Sonoma County. There was a tiny dance hall, with room for a few hundred patrons, that dated back until at least the 1940s. It was an ideal spot for out-of-the-way activities where little scrutiny was desired, and the Grateful Dead had some good times there, before they simply outgrew the place.
It is the stuff of legend that the newly-arrived Robert Hunter was sitting outside the Rio Nido Dance Hall, listening to the Dead rehearse what would become "Dark Star," and started to write down the lyrics. Although the date may in fact be September 4, it would not likely have been an actual show. September 4 was Labor Day, although I suppose it is possible that the Dead did play a show that night. More likely, the Dead had left their equipment in place, and were rehearsing there because they could.
|The Grateful Dead returned to Eagles Auditorium on September 8-9, 1967, headlining two shows over local bands Magic Fern and Fat Jack.|
The Grateful Dead returned to Eagles Auditorium in Seattle for a weekend of shows. This was a consistent pattern with the Grateful Dead, where they would play a show in a city, and stick in a free concert in the afternoon, as they had in Seattle (with a free concert at Golden Gardens Beach on Puget Sound on July 16). When they returned, they had a bigger audience the next time around. I should point out that the Dead are hugely popular in Seattle to this day.
Opening the show along with Magic Fern was another newly-arisen Seattle psychedelic band, Fat Jack. Fat Jack was out of Bellngham, WA, where they had opened for the Jefferson Airplane (on May 27 '67) as The Safety Patrol, with Kathi McDonald as lead singer. One of the band members recalls
Shortly after this we fired Kathi because she wouldn't rehearse!!!! We were too dumb to realize that some people don't need to rehearse…they are born ready. It was the best thing we could have done for her, because she immediately went to San Francisco and got discovered by Ike Turner. She was replaced by Ken Cantrell. We had “conquered” Bellingham, so we drifted into Seattle. Our manager was in the right place at the right time when the band that was to open for The Grateful Dead at Eagles Auditorium couldn't go on after their drummer broke his leg in a wreck. So within one week of blowing into town we're on the stage with the Grateful Dead (fall of 1967). A lot of Eagles jobs followed, opening for Country Joe & The Fish, Charles Lloyd, John Fahey, Blue Cheer, etc.September 9, 1967 Volunteer Park, Seattle, WA: Grateful Dead (afternoon free concert)
Once again, the Dead played for free, this time near downtown Seattle, just a few miles from the University of Washington.
September 15, 1967 Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles, CA: Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead/(Big Brother And The Holding Company) Bill Graham Presents The San Francisco Scene
Bill Graham was still taking the Fillmore bands on the road. He booked a concert at the huge Hollywood Bowl, featuring the Airplane, the Dead and Big Brother, although Big Brother actually canceled. I don't know how many people actually attended. The Hollywood Bowl, at 2301 North Highland, had a capacity of over 17,000.
September 16, 1967 Elysian Park, Los Angeles, CA: Jefferson Airplane/Grateful Dead (afternoon free concert)
The day after the Hollywood Bowl show, the Dead and the Airplane played a free concert at Elysian Park in Los Angeles. Elysian Park is in Central Los Angeles, near the foot of Sunset Boulevard, and not far from Chavez Ravine and Dodger Stadium. Elysian Park was established in 1886.
September 16 (?), 1967 Convention Center Rotunda, Las Vegas, NV: Grateful Dead
In Tom Constanten's autobiography, he recalls his live debut with the Grateful Dead at the Las Vegas Convention Center around this time (he writes "Sept. 67?"). TC was stationed with the Air Force near Las Vegas at the time. He would hardly have forgotten such a memorable moment, so I am confident that the Dead played Las Vegas Convention Center around this time. However, we cannot date it exactly.
Some time ago, I speculated about it at some length and thought that Saturday, September 16 was a likely date, right after the Friday night Hollywood Bowl show. However, it seems a lot less likely date now, since we know the Dead played a free concert in LA that afternoon. I doubt they played in Las Vegas that night, and I also doubt they played any weeknight. What seems more likely is that they played a weekend gig in Las Vegas in October, perhaps Friday October 13 or a night on the weekend of October 20-21, while they were recording Anthem Of The Sun in Los Angeles. The Convention Center Rotunda, built in 1959 with a capacity of 6,130 seems the most likely venue, if somewhat large for the band. Possibly they shared the bill with another group.
|The third weekend for Chet Helms' Family Dog in Denver at 1601 West Evans was held on September 22-23, 1967, featuring the Grateful Dead and Mother Earth.|
Chet Helms had plans to expand the Family Dog footprint beyond San Francisco. His idea was that he could compete more effectively with Bill Graham if he could offer touring bands multiple weekend gigs in different cities. Helms' first effort was Denver, which seemed like a great idea. It was a booming town, and it made sense for rock bands to stop in Colorado on their way to and from California. For his venue, Helms leased a building at 1601 West Evans, the former site of a very mysterious franchise of the Whisky-A-Go-Go.
The Denver Dog, as it was known, had opened on September 8, 1967 with Big Brother And The Holding Company. Quicksilver headlined the next weekend, and the Grateful Dead headlined the third weekend. It was a great idea and a good plan, except for one thing: the County Sheriff. The Sheriff hated hippies, and constant harassment of the venue, the bands and the fans rapidly drove the Denver Dog into economic failure. The career of Canned Heat was ruined due to an untimely bust, and no doubt many lesser known patrons had their lives wrecked by pot busts and other problems. Bob Seger's song "Get Out Of Denver" immortalizes the view of hippies held by the Sheriff's Department at the time.
Helms had pulled out of Denver by the end of 1967, although some employees of the Denver Dog continued to put on shows through mid-1968. Their use of the Family Dog logo was tolerated, although from a historical point of view, the '68 shows were not Family Dog. One of the key figures in the 1968 operation was young Barry Fey, who became the biggest promoter in Denver and the Mountain West in general. Opening act Mother Earth was based in San Francisco, even though most of the members were from Texas, and lead singer Tracy Nelson was from Madison, WI.
September 24, 1967 City Park, Denver, CO: Grateful Dead/Captain Beefheart/Tracy Nelson and Mother Earth/Lothar and The Hand People/Crystal Palace Guard
True to their pattern, the Grateful Dead played a free concert at a city park in Denver. I'm not sure exactly which park it was, although there are photos. The photos show a very small and casual event, with not even a raised stage. Now, of course, the remaining band members can play Folsom Field, but it seems to have started with a little fun in the park on a Saturday afternoon.
September 29-30, 1967 The Straight Theater, San Francisco, CA: Grateful Dead/Sons Of Champlin
The Grateful Dead returned to the Straight Theater for a weekend of shows. The venue still did not have a Dance Hall Permit, but they discovered that dance lessons did not require a Permit. Thus dancer Anna Halprin began each evening's program with some dance instruction, and the bands provided a few hours of music for everyone to "practice." This charade sufficed to cause the police to leave the Straight alone. Some silent video circulates from this event.
Mickey Hart went to see the Saturday night show (Sep 30), and at the break another drum set was procured so he could sit in. By the end of the show, Hart was in the Grateful Dead.
October 1, 1967 Greek Theatre, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA: Grateful Dead/Charles Lloyd/Bola Sete
On Sunday, the Grateful Dead debuted at the Greek Theatre in UC Berkeley. "The Greek," as it is known locally, was built in 1903, modeled after theaters in ancient Athens. The funding was provided by William Randolph Hearst. The Greek has a capacity of 8,500, huge by the standards of 60s rock concerts, so it wasn't widely used until the rock market got big enough to absorb crowds of that size. The first performance at The Greek was of Arisophanes "The Birds." Speakers at The Greek have included Presidents Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson, and shoulda-been President Robert F. Kennedy. Musical performers at The Greek have been too numerous to mention.
Bola Sete was a popular jazz guitarist, and Charles Lloyd was friendly with the Dead. His quartet at the time probably included Keith Jarrett, Ron McClure and Jack DeJohnette. The Grateful Dead would go on to play many memorable shows at The Greek in the 1980s, as would Jerry Garcia. The venue is still going strong, after a recent seismic retrofit.
update: Regular commenter ruppi43 points out that photos of the Dead at the Greek do not show Mickey Hart performing with the band. Indeed, there are no photos of Mickey when the Dead were busted, and none of him with the band until around November 1967. As ruppi43 points out, while Mickey "passed the audition," it seems to have taken a little while before the Dead took him on permanently. Hart's second show may not have been until The Shrine on November 11, 1967.
|The Grateful Dead headlined a Saturday night concert at The Continental Ballroom in Santa Clara (a San Jose suburb) on October 14, 1967. The opening acts were local groups The Powers Of Evil and Om.|
The Grateful Dead headlined another show at the Continental Ballroom on Saturday, October 14. I don't know who the promoter might have been. The other acts are familiar names from psychedelic San Jose area shows at the time, although I know nothing about them specifically.
October 22, 1967 Winterland, San Francisco, CA: Big Brother and The Holding Company/Grateful Dead/Quicksilver Messenger Service
October 31, 1967 Winterland, San Francisco, CA: Big Brother and The Holding Company/Grateful Dead/Quicksilver Messenger Service
There is something odd and unexamined about these two posters from Winterland. BGP had first call on Winterland, but other promoters could use the hall. Often the San Francisco bands would finance their own shows at Winterland, sometimes hiring some or all of Graham's production staff to do so. Usually those shows were not on Friday and Saturday nights. Certainly, the October 22 show was a Sunday night, and the Halloween show would have been on a Tuesday. The posters advertise the same three bands for both events. There seems to be a vault tape of the Grateful Dead show on October 22, 1967, so it seems likely that all three bands put on a Sunday night Winterland show on that date.
However, Winterland had an official capacity of 5,400, which was huge for the rock market at the time (the Fillmore was about 1,500). Without Jefferson Airplane, there was no way SF bands could fill Winterland, given that they played around the area constantly. There's no reason to think that the bands didn't play on October 22. However, it seems extremely unlikely that the bands would repeat the booking just nine days later, even if it was Halloween. Is there any evidence other than the poster that the 1967 Halloween concert actually took place?
My hypothesis is that the "Trip Or Freak" poster is so memorable that it has become notable in collecting circles, as well it should have. However, many posters were produced for shows that did not occur, and I am waiting for evidence that the Halloween show actually happened. More likely, the bands were considering various dates, and more than one poster got produced.
November 10-11, 1967 Shrine Exposition Hall, Los Angeles, CA: Buffalo Springfield/Grateful Dead/Blue Cheer
The Grateful Dead had headed down to Los Angeles to start work on their second album. Once again, they recorded with Dave Hassinger at RCA Studio A (at 6363 Sunset Blvd), where they had recorded their first album. The sessions weren't that fruitful, as everyone knows, but in between the sessions they found time to play a weekend of shows at The Shrine Exposition Hall in Los Angeles with the Buffalo Springfield and the San Francisco band Blue Cheer.
The Shrine Exposition Hall was Los Angeles' premier concert venue in the 1960s, and there has been very little detailed history of it (I am working on it). Pinnacle was the first big concert promoter at the The Shrine, and they put on many classic shows that were immortalized by great posters. The Shrine was built in 1925 by the Al Malikah Temple of the Masonic Order. The building is in a Spanish Colonial Style with a Moorish flair. The main entrance to the Auditorium was at 665 West Jefferson Street. The stage is huge (186 by 72 feet) and it is a popular home for the Academy Awards. The Auditorium has 6,489 seats on three levels. The Exposition Hall, part of the same complex but around the corner at 700 West 32nd (at Figueroa) is a 56,000 square foot open area that was (and is) used for trade shows and conventions as well as rock concerts. Most rock concert listings that say “Shrine” are typically at the Exposition Hall rather than the Auditorium.
December 8-9, 1967 Psychedelic Supermarket, Boston, MA; Grateful Dead
Unhappy at RCA Studios, the Grateful Dead had trucked their equipment eastwards, and continued recording Anthem Of The Sun with Dave Hassinger at Century Studios in New York. While the band was in New York for most of a month, they presumably needed to play some shows in order to raise some needed cash. The Boston rock market was always booming, and by 1967 there were already competing psychedelic venues. The Dead accepted a weekend booking at a now-obscure place called The Psychedelic Supermarket. The Supermarket was a converted parking garage near Kenmore Square, at 590 Commonwealth Avenue. Actually, the entrance was in an alleyway, but the Commonwealth Avenue address made the place easier to find.
The Psychedelic Supermarket had been rapidly created to accommodate a Cream booking. Promter George Popadopolis had run a nearby folk coffee shop, called The Unicorn (at 815 Boylston), but he saw an opportunity when Cream was available. However, although numerous fantastic acts played the Psychedelic Supermarket, the venue is not remembered fondly by either bands or fans. The promoter was notoriously cheap, the venue unattractive and the sound was terrible. The Supermarket lasted through the end of 1968, briefly changed its name to The Unicorn, but faded away by mid-69. The venue became a movie theater called The Nickelodeon, and was ultimately torn down to provide a new science building for Boston University.
December 9, 1967 Atwood Hall, Clark University, Worcester, MA: Grateful Dead (afternoon show)
Atwood Hall was a relatively tiny auditorium, capacity 658, on the campus of Clark University. Although an April 20, 1969 performance was known, the Archive comment thread indicated that Jerry Garcia apologized for the band's previous appearance 18 months earlier. Thanks to the internet, my post on this subject brought forth the details, including the hitherto unseen poster at the top of the post.
As the Dead were playing Boston for a payday, an afternoon show at a nearby University was another way to get some funds. Since the show was probably subsidized by Clark U, the band could get their fee even at a tiny place. By the same token, since the venue was small, the booking wouldn't interfere with any agreement with the Psychedelic Supermarket. Clark University, founded in 1887, was a small liberal arts school in Worcester (pronounced, I believe "wooster"), about an hour West of Boston.
Although I am not generally interested in debunking incorrect dates, I should point out that there is no evidence whatsoever, none, that the Grateful Dead played the Shrine Auditorium on December 13, 1967, much less debuted "Dark Star" there. For one thing, the band was on the East Coast, and for another, there were never weekday shows at the Shrine. In any case, there is no other evidence.
December 22-24 Palm Gardens, New York, NY: Grateful Dead/The Gray Company/Aluminum Dream/Group Image
The Grateful Dead had finished their unsatisfying NYC recording effort by the end of December. With all their equipment and crew in the East, the band must have needed money to get home. The band played a weekend show at The Palm Gardens. It was at 310 W. 52nd Street, right near Midtown and the Broadway theaters. Of course, Its All The Streets You Crossed has the best information. The Palm Gardens seems to have been a ballroom from the 1920s, and was one of the home bases of the NYC hippie rock band The Group Image, who acted sort of as hosts of the Grateful Dead when they were in town. I don't know anything about The Gray Company or Aluminum Dream.December 26-27 Village Theater, New York, NY: Grateful Dead/Peggy Emerson/Take Five
The Grateful Dead played a weekend in old theater in the East Village, at 2nd Avenue and 6ht Street. The Village Theater would become famous a few months later when Bill Graham and Albert Grossman would refurbish it and open it as the Fillmore East, but in late '67, it was just another old theater. According to numerous sources, on at least one night, the rundown building had holes in the roof, and when it snowed, it was actually snowing on the stage.
December 29-30, 1967 Psychedelic Supermarket, Boston, MA: Grateful Dead
The Dead seemed to have returned to The Psychedelic Supermarket for another weekend, although that has not been entirely confirmed. Maybe they didn't play a second weeekend at all. This suggests that the first weekend must have gone pretty well. I have to assume, by the way, that there were opening acts for both Supermarket weekends, but I don't know who that might have been. The Supermarket just had generic flyers, not posters, and there was no specific information in the MIT student paper (the best source) nor the Harvard Crimson.
>December 31, 1967 Winterland
The Grateful Dead were scheduled to arrive in San Francisco during the day, and expected to go jam with Quicksilver Messenger Service at Winterland that night. Quicksilver was playing that night along with Jefferson Airplane and Big Brother. The story goes, however, that while the band arrived home in time, someone made them some brownies, and they all fell asleep--no doubt due to the delicious chocolatey goodness--and they never got to Winterland to jam. It's possible that Bob Weir and a drummer did turn up on stage later that night, but there wasn't a quorum of band members.