Unlike television in their homeland, Danish TV was willing to broadcast the Grateful Dead live, in stereo and without numerous ad breaks. They didn’t air the hour-long Dark Star/Sugar Magnolia/Caution but a fair number of the earlier songs were supplied to the Danish public’s ears and eyes. What seems to be the full broadcast show from the second night at the Tivoli on April 17th 1972 is now on YouTube (see below).
To add some visual interest to the show (let’s face it, there’s not a lot of snazzy stagecraft in a Dead performance), they donned their Bolo and Bozo masks to play Big Railroad Blues (at the hour mark in the video).
Now a part of Dead mythology, these two groups of people were identified by which of the two tour buses they rode on: the Bozo bus was the more boisterous of the two; the Bolos tried to get some sleep (Phil and Pigpen were the only Bolos in the band). A whole cod-philosophy, Hypnocracy, complete with myths and parables, was dreamt up around these two groups and a character called St. Dilbert (who did not work in an office). When asked about the meaning of Hypnocracy, Garcia simply answered: “It’s for me to know and you to find out.”
- Me and Bobby McGee
- Chinatown Shuffle
- China Cat Sunflower/ I Know You Rider
- Jack Straw
- He’s Gone (the first ever performance of this song)
- Next Time You See Me
- One More Saturday Night
- Hurts Me Too
- Ramble On Rose
- El Paso
- Big Railroad Blues
PS. Nothing of earth-shattering importance happened 40 years ago today, apparently.