Cover image by Neil Barrett
The Port Chester 6-24-70 “Dark Star” played straight through
This edit is intended only for people who have already listened to the three-part, 6-24-70 “Dark Star” sequence 1,000 times.
Everyone else should immediately go encounter it in its full, as-played glory (streamed or downloaded):
If you DO know this performance like the back of your hand, then you might enjoy this continuous edit, which eliminates “Attics” and “Sugar Magnolia.” It shortens the full 29:12 sequence to a single 21:20 “Dark Star.”
(Then again, like my friend who gave me a tape of this in 1987, you might scream, "Heresy!")
The gentle intro to “Attics” out of DS1 and the clean start of DS2 make the first edit pretty reasonable sounding. (There’s an errant, loud Garcia note just before “Attics” really gets underway, and I just put the note with which he re-starts “Dark Star” there instead.) The second edit, removing the song-ish part of “Sugar Magnolia,” is seamless.
I’m not casting any aspersions on the justifiably famous and genuinely thrilling sequence; however, “Attics” and “Sugar Magnolia” have become less satisfying uses of my time, over time, while I often wish to return to the "Dark Star."
An aside: There’s a great discussion of audience-tape-only “Dark Stars” here.