May 28th, 1977: The Grateful Dead’s Road To Terrapin Runs Through Hartford
Ask any band member or fan of the Grateful Dead about the month of May 1977 and they will tell you it was a magical, mythical period of time. A time when the band captured something so powerful musically it would be impossible for anyone to describe it. No worries though. They have the bootlegs to tell the whole story.
By the time the Dead had arrived in Hartford in the spring of '77 they had already laid claim to some amazing shows in Connecticut. They played open-air concerts at Colt Park in Hartford, numerous gigs in New Haven and a few other select Connecticut venues along the way. It was their first show at The Hartford Civic Center on Saturday May 28th, 1977, however, that became part of a legendary stretch for the band and my personal favorite era of the Grateful Dead.
For many years bootleg recordings of this show circulated. Finally in April of 2009 an official recording of the album was released on Rhino Records with the very excellent title of "To Terrapin: Hartford '77". It is, without a doubt, required listening for every Dead Head.
In about a month from now I will be jamming to Dead & Co. in Hartford at the Xfinity Theater in Hartford with the person who turned me on to the Grateful Dead over 20 years ago, my brother Marty. The day he handed me a copy of the Dead's show on May 5th of '77 at The Veterans' Memorial Coliseum in New Haven was the day I became fascinated with Jerry Garcia and the world of the Grateful Dead. But until then I think I will just have to light some incense, kick up my feet, close my eyes, and imagine I'm front row at the Civic Center watching Jerry and the boys make magic one more time...
The Grateful Dead Hartford Civic Center, Hartford, CT (5/28/77)
New Minglewood Blues
Brown Eyed Women
Samson and Delilah
Playin' in the Band
Not Fade Away
Playin' in the Band
One More Saturday Night