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n u g s . n e t | Grateful Dead mp3 May 1977
Everybody's playing in The Heart of Gold Band! May 1977 holds a special place in the hearts of many Deadheads. The mere digits 5, 8, and 77 conjure up notions of swirling spiral-latticed guitar runs and pounding, thunderous bass lines. But don't let the mystique of The Cornell Show fool you. There's plenty more where that came from. Try the "Help>Slip!>Franklin's" from the next night in Buffalo, for instance. Or the "Eyes>Wheel>Wharf Rat" from the night before at the Boston Garden. Or the "Sugaree" from New Haven a few nights earlier.

These shows don't detract from the appeal of The Cornell Show, but rather place 5/8/77 in the context of the band's sustained power of performance during this near-midpoint of their career. Night after night Phil's slides on the fretless bass, Jerry's attacks on the Mu-Tron, Weir's jingle-jangle cowboy timbre, Keith's percussive melodic reinforcement, Donna Jean's wailing vocals, and of course the Rhythm Devils' locomotion together propel this band into the cosmos.

Twenty-five years later, the tapes crackle and spit fire out of your speakers and never cease to amaze upon each new playback. It's unlikely that we'll see any official vault releases of these shows as the master tapes are not in the vault. There are some cuts and splices throughout the tapes that do exist, yet the tracks below represent the best composite of what the band was capable of on any given night in May of 1977.

Thursday, May 5, 1977 New Haven Coliseum, New Haven, CT

Stream this show by clicking the LISTEN buttons below. Click LISTEN to stream an entire set.

SET1Listen
dead air
Promised Land
Sugaree
Mama Tried
El Paso
Tennessee Jed
Looks Like Rain
Deal
dead air
Lazy Lightning
Supplication Blues
Peggy-O
The Music Never Stopped
SET2Listen
dead air
Bertha
Estimated Prophet
dead air
Scarlet Begonias
Fire on the Mountain
Good Lovin'
St. Stephen
Sugar Magnolia
ENCORE
Johnny B. Goode

Saturdy, May 7, 1977 Boston Garden, Boston, MA

Stream this show by clicking the LISTEN buttons below. Click LISTEN to stream an entire set.

SET1Listen
dead air
Bertha
Cassidy
Deal
Jack Straw
Peggy-O
Minglewood Blues
Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo
Big River
dead air
Tennessee Jed
The Music Never Stopped
SET2Listen
dead air
Terrapin Station
Samson and Delilah
Friend of the Devil
Estimated Prophet
dead air
Eyes Of The World
Drums
The Wheel
Wharf Rat
Around and Around
ENCORE
(U.S. Blues) *missing

Sunday, May 8, 1977 Barton Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Stream this show by clicking the LISTEN buttons below. Click LISTEN to stream an entire set.

SET1Listen
Minglewood Blues
Loser
El Paso
They Love Each Other
Jack Straw
Deal
Lazy Lightning
Supplication Blues
Brown-Eyed Women
Mama Tried
Row Jimmy
dead air
Dancin' In The Streets
SET2Listen
Take A Step Back
Scarlet Begonias
Fire on the Mountain
Estimated Prophet
St. Stephen
Not Fade Away
St. Stephen
Morning Dew
ENCORE
One More Saturday Night

Monday, May 9, 1977 War Memorial, Buffalo, NY

Stream this show by clicking the LISTEN buttons below. Click LISTEN to stream an entire set.

SET1Listen
Help on the Way
Slipknot!
Franklin's Tower
Cassidy
Brown-Eyed Women
Mexicali Blues
Tennessee Jed
Big River
Peggy-O
Sunrise
The Music Never Stopped
SET2Listen
Bertha
Good Lovin'
Ship of Fools
Estimated Prophet
The Other One
Drums
Not Fade Away
Comes A Time
Sugar Magnolia
ENCORE
Uncle John's Band