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Dick's Picks, Vol. 19: Oklahoma City, OK, 10/19/73 Box set, Live

4.5 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, Live, August 31, 2004
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No Description Available
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Media Type: CD
Artist: GRATEFUL DEAD
Title: VOL. 19-DICK'S PICKS
Street Release Date: 08/31/2004
Domestic
Genre: ROCK/POP
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 31, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Box set, Live
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Grateful Dead / Wea
  • ASIN: B0002VETIG
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #126,858 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Jeffrey Blehar on March 27, 2005
Format: Audio CD
By any measure you care to use, 1973 was a banner year for the Grateful Dead in terms of live performance. It came right in the middle of their so-called "Golden Age" of 1972-1974, and caught them at a point where they had begun to expand not only their repertoire (most of the songs from Wake Of The Flood would, once introduced, never leave their setlists), but also their musical palette as well. Many have labelled the Dead's music from late '73 and '74 as "jazz-rock," and while the term is somewhat inapt (it doesn't capture the "Promised Land"/"Sugaree" side of the band, for one thing) it does help to approximate the laid-back vibe of classics like "Eyes Of The World" as well as suggest the purely free-form improvisational cast of many of their jams. Without a doubt the Dead were developing a lighter touch: Kreutzmann had redefined the band's rhythmic approach over the last year in adjusting to his role as sole drummer, and his quickness, natural sense of restraint, and timing enabled the Dead to evolve a much more agile, ethereal sound.

Dick's Picks 19 captures every aspect of that "sound," which made the Dead mesmerizing in this era, in one near-perfect concert. This show is a very special one indeed, kicking off an immortal Fall '73 tour where the band managed to capture lightning in a bottle night after night, pushing out into new improvisational territory and juggling setlists and song-sequences with devil-may-care abandon. (There are many - I'm one of them - who would argue that Fall '73 is every bit the equal of Europe '72; there's a reason that THREE Dick's Picks have been released from this two-month span.)

Just about the only complaint one might make is about the first disc. It represents the bulk of the first set, which means it's full of shorter songs.
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Format: Audio CD
Disc One:

Promised Land (3:44), Sugaree (8:18), Mexicali Blues (3:58), Tennessee Jed (8:00), Looks Like Rain (8:05), Don't Ease Me In (4:24), Jack Straw (5:32), They Love Each Other (5:44), El Paso (4:51), Row Jimmy (9:23)

Disc Two:

Playing In The Band (18:23), China Cat Sunflower (9:11), I Know You Rider (5:18),

Me and My Uncle (3:34), Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo (7:30), Big River (4:52)

Disc Three:

Dark Star (15:45), Mind Left Body Jam (10:41), Morning Dew (13:55), Sugar Magnolia (10:10), Eyes of the World (14:31), Stella Blue (7:57), Johnny B. Goode (4:08)

If you're wondering which of this new batch of Dick's Picks are the couple best ones, you're in luck. You just found one of the best ones. This is a really lovely Pick and it has a gentle beauty to it. It doesn't have the throbbing, mind-crushing energy of 10/25/73, but it has plenty of gorgeous playing and open improvisations.

I don't consider the Playing in the Band to be all that special, but disc 3 from Dark Star through Eyes does not disappoint. Eyes has what I'd term some "inspired sloppiness"... they sorta lose their way in the darker ending jam I love so much, but still manage to pull out some noteworthy nuggets that make it happen, even though it won't be the most together version you've ever heard.

Also, the sound on this one is really good. Some Grateful Dead releases seem to have neutered Phil's tone so he is more difficult to hear, or some of his midrange tone seems to be lighter. I hate that. On this Pick though, all is as it should be. The muscle of his tone is here.

Of these new six Dick's Picks that were just released to retail outlets, pick up this one, #22 (2/23 & 2/24/68) and #23 (9/17/72). These are the 3 essential Picks of this batch.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I've been a hard-core Grateful Dead listener now for about ten years. That means that I own roughly 30 live shows from my favorite eras, and listen to XM Satellite Channel 57 (24 hr GD radio) whenever I have the time. My other favorite Picks are 12, 15, and 29.

One thing I love about '72-'73 shows is how much care and clarity Jerry and Bob especially put into their singing. There are some Dead eras where they just seem to be bawling into the microphone any old way at all, and while that sometimes works and sounds great, it can't match the beauty of this era's vocals for me.

This Pick has my favorite "Sugaree," my favorite "Tennessee Jed," my 2nd favorite "Jack Straw," (the best one is track 1 on Dick's Picks 10,) and an 18 minute version of "Playing in the Band" that might contain what is simply my favorite extended Grateful Dead jam ever.

Unlike some of the band's later, smoother eras, this isn't entirely easy listening. While some Grateful Dead shows make great background music for socializing (especially the '77 and early 80's shows) this show is more technically assertive and more psychedelic at times than some of those later eras. Again and again, this show will either demand you to turn it down so that you can keep talking, or turn it up and stop talking (my prefered option.) Jerry, Bob, Donna and the boys are definitely demanding your attention in this beautiful, lively, colorful show, and the most gratifying decision you'll make all night will be to sit back, crack open a cold one, and give it to them.
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