Grateful Dead - History Of The Grateful Dead Vol. 1 (Bear's Choice)


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The Grateful Dead's first true archival album, Bear's Choice, was lovingly produced as a tribute to Pigpen shortly after he passed by none other than the Dead's original soundman and benefactor, Owsley Stanley, aka Bear. Drawing from live shows recorded three years earlier by Bear at the Fillmore East in New York City, Bear's Choice captures the Dead at an essential moment of their history, as they were about to record Workingman's Dead (and shortly after that, American Beauty), and were transitioning into becoming Americana pioneers, while never losing touch with their psychedelic improvisational roots. Three of the eight songs on the album are sung by Pigpen, with Side 1 being the definitive example of early acoustic Dead and Side 2 being electric blues and rock & roll, with Pigpen leading the charge on both tracks on the second side. 

Heavyweight vinyl produced by Warner Records in 2023.


  1. Katie Mae
  2. Dark Hollow
  3. I've Been All Around This World
  4. Wake Up Little Susie
  5. Black Peter
  6. Smokestack Lightnin
  7. Hard to Handle
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