The Grateful Dead Reader by David Dodd
(Readers on American Musicians)

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Here is an exciting collection of writings about The Grateful Dead, offering both classic and hard-to-find essays, reporting, and reviews.
Arranged in chronological order, these pieces add up to nothing less than a full-scale history of the group--from Tom Wolfe's account of the Dead's first performance (at an Acid Test in 1965), to Ralph Gleason's 1967 interview with the 24-year-old Jerry Garcia, to Mary Eisenhart's obituary of the great guitarist. Powerful, incisive, and always imaginative, these selections include not only outstanding writing on the Grateful Dead, but also superb pieces on music and pop culture generally. And alongside the words of Tom Wolfe, George W.S. Trow, and Robert Christgau, readers will find poetry, fiction, drawings, and an offering of rare and revealing photographs. Fans will be fascinated by this anthology's many interviews and profiles, interpretations of lyrics, and concert and record reviews. Yet The Grateful Dead was more than a band--it was a cultural phenomenon. For three decades it remained on one unending tour, followed everywhere by a small army of nomadic fans who constituted a virtual cult. The writers in The Grateful Dead Reader both celebrate and analyze this phenomenon, in such pieces as Ed McClanahan's groundbreaking article in Playboy in 1972, fan-magazine editor Blair Jackson's 1990 essay on the seriousness of the drug situation at Dead concerts, and Steve Silberman's insightful essays on the music and its fans.
The Grateful Dead Reader brims with some of the best writing on music, on popular culture, and on a band that helped define a generation.

About David Dodd

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David G. Dodd and Diana Spaulding are a husband-and-wife editorial team. David co-edited (with Robert Weiner) the definitive Grateful Dead bibliography, The Grateful Dead and Deadheads. He also maintains the Annotated Grateful Dead Lyrics site on the Internet. Diana is a Project Manager for the CARL Corporation. They live in Petaluma, California.
Published February 1, 2000 by Diane Pub Co. 330 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography. Non-fiction

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While contributors like Silberman, Mary Eisenhart, and Blair Jackson are connected within the Dead organization (and, to their credit, find insiders’ insights), the rock critical establishment is represented by short, lively pieces from Robert Christgau and Richard Meltzer, as well as writers not...

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Publishers Weekly

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Even the most hardcore Deadheads will be impressed by this obsessively complete look at the Grateful Dead's lyrics written by Robert Hunter and John Barlow, as well as selected traditional and cover songs that were basic parts of the Dead's repertoire.

Aug 22 2005 | Read Full Review of The Grateful Dead Reader (Rea...

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