From what I’ve read online, the Dream Bowl in Vallejo, California was a dance hall which was hugely popular through the 40’s and 50’s, and by the 60’s was starting to lose some of said popularity. Several psychedelic 60’s bands booked a run of gigs early in 1969, including Santana, It’s a Beautiful Day, and the Grateful Dead themselves, who had two shows on February 21 and 22.
I think late 60’s-era Dead is some of my favorite, and this show is a great example of why. They were not even 5 years together as a band, but they played with the air of a group that was already pretty tuned into each other. The Dream Bowl shows took place right around the time the Dead were recording for their first live album, Live/Dead, and a lot of the songs on that album appear in this show, including “Dark Star,” as well as “St. Stephen,” “The Eleven,” and “Turn On Your Lovelight,” all of which appear in set 2 of this show, which we featured in this week’s installment of The Dead Zone. Please enjoy below.