August 9, 1995. 

Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead dies from a heart attack at age 53. His voice fills the airwaves as millions of Deadheads mourn.

An Elegy for Jerry (by Robert Hunter)

Jerry, my friend,
you've done it again,
even in your silence 
the familiar pressure
comes to bear, demanding
I pull words from the air
with only this morning
and part of the afternoon
to compose an ode worthy
of one so particular
about every turn of phrase,
demanding it hit home 
in a thousand ways
before making it his own,
and this I can't do alone.
Now that the singer is gone,
where shall I go for the song?

Without your melody and tase
to lend an attitude of grace
a lyric is an orphan thing,
a hive with neither honey's taste
nor power to truly sting.

What choice have I but to dare and
call your muse who thought to rest
out of the thin blue air
that out of the field of shared time,
a line or two might chance to shine --

As ever when we called,
in hope if not in words,
the muse descends.

How should she desert us now?
Scars of battle on her brow,
bedraggled feathers on her wings,
and yet she sings, she sings!

May she bear thee to thy rest,
the ancient bower of flowers
beyond the solitude of days,
the tyranny of hours--
the wreath of shining laurel lie
upon your shaggy head
bestowing power to play the lyre
to legions of the dead

If some part of that music
is heard in deepest dream,
or on some breeze of Summer
a snatch of golden theme,
we'll know you live inside us
with love that never parts
our good old Jack O'Diamonds
become the King of Hearts.

I feel your silent laughter
at sentiments so bold
that dare to step across the line
to tell what must be told,
so I'll just say I love you,
which I never said before
and let it go at that old friend
the rest you may ignore.

Dancing On A Hillside: The Grateful Dead At Alpine Valley 

The Grateful Dead played at Alpine Valley Music Theatre 20 times from 1980 to 1989. Fans trucked to the southeastern Wisconsin venue from all over the country. Producer Steve Gotcher attended most of those shows. On the day that turned out to be their last concert at Alpine in July of ’89, he decided to record the sounds of the scene in the parking lot. Here’s what he found.

Source: Dancing On A Hillside: The Grateful Dead At Alpine Valley | Wisconsin Life

The Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia opinion on The Beatles

The Rolling Stones never appeased Garcia’s appetite in the same way that their compatriot’s The Beatles did: “Garcia thought, The Rolling Stones’ music was not that much of a surprise, because I’d listened to a lot of rhythm and blues, and early Rolling Stones was similar to that music, although not as well done. But the Beatles were doing something new and they had great musical ideas and a great thing going. Plus, seeing the movie Hard Day’s Night was a turn-on.”

~ David Nelson, New Riders of The Purple Sage

Source: The Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia opinion on The Beatles

Europe ’72

If you’re a Dead Head, you’ve got this in your collection. If you’re not a Dead Head and want a good start — get it. The triple-live album is released on November 5, 1972, and documents the Dead’s most expensive and expansive tour ever. Their label hoped to recoup costs so they recorded every damn thing the band did over the two-month tour. The result is arguably the best sample of what the Grateful Dead were all about. And probably their finest work.