Grateful Dead: Knot Jazz (1968-1994)

This is an all-instrumental mix of generally jazzy Grateful Dead. The track list probably explains the premise pretty clearly: repetitious patterns in strange time signatures, structured jams, a family of Phil riffs, various knots that the band would tie and untie. As much as possible, I picked performances that present the motifs and riffs through unorthodox explorations. 

To those, I added some other Dead jazz moods, looking for interesting continuities across the years and songs. The overall goal is a gigantic, surprising jam that foregrounds the jazz/fusion band the Dead sort of were. 

Almost all this music appeared in some form on previous Save Your Face compilations. The exceptions are the 1994 “Terrapin” and “Let It Grow” jams. Nothing here has been officially released to my knowledge. 

140-minute mp3 mix zipped up here

Part 1 (69 minutes):

  • Paging Getz & Gilberto (1975 rehearsal)
  • Clementine instrumental (1/68)
  • Bird Song instrumental (7/27/73)
  • Philo Stomp > Jam (10/24/72)
  • Phil Jazz Jam (7/1/73)
  • Longer than Dirt (1975 rehearsal)
  • Slipknoodle (1975 rehearsal)
  • Early Eyes Jams (2/21>22/73)
  • Eyesknot (6/20/74)
  • The Seven (3/21/70)
  • The Nines (1975 rehearsal)

Part 2 (69 minutes):

  • Help on the Way/Looseknot Jam (1975 rehearsal)
  • Jam (10/19/72)
  • Spanish Jam (3/24/73)
  • The Main Ten (6/19/68)
  • Terrapin Jam (10/19/94)
  • Let it Grow Jam (3/6/94)
  • Let it Grow Horns instrumental (9/26/73)
  • The Music Almost Stopped (1975 rehearsal)
  • Noodle on the Mountain (1975 rehearsal)
  • Another Riff (1994 rehearsal)

27 responses
Can't download or play these as they are archive files.
Haven't listened yet, but this looks exciting. Welcome back! (The files play fine for me.)
Really frustrating, all the links on the blog now go to "Archive" files which I can't open, the Dropbox page looks very different from before. My Dropbox account seems to be working fine otherwise.
Gren, I don't know what's up. I haven't changed anything about my accounts, so I'm not sure why all links would begin behaving weirdly for you.
Gren, I archived a recent post (just one), so maybe that's the short-circuit. I totally deleted it just now. See if that changes anything.
Hi John, no change I'm afraid. I've been going through DB support page but can't find anything relevant.
I download just fine, and I'm listening now. WELCOME BACK.
i’m glad you’re back and thankful for your efforts
This is astounding. Thank you so much for this mix. A wonderful interpretation of the Dead as an American Soft Machine.
Got it at last (with help from Brian at Dropbox support). Wonderful stuff, many thanks John.
Kit, thank you/you're welcome! What a great comparison. I'd never have thought of it. Glad people are enjoying this - and downloading successfully!
I had no problem downloading. Sounds great. Nice to have you back, John. If you can hang, that'd be sweet. Your Dead-work is always at least excellent, and sometimes it's art itself.
Josh, thank you. That's quite a compliment!
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