The Grateful Dead perform a delicate “Mountains of the Moon” and a rip-snortin’ “St. Stephen” from their 1969 Aoxomoxoa album on Hugh Hefner’s Playboy After Dark TV show. Aoxomoxoa is considered a strong highlight among the group’s studio output by fans, but “Mountains of the Moon” and “St. Stephen” were thought to be too hard to play live by Jerry Garcia—there were only thirteen live performances of “Mountains of the Moon” in total and after 1971 “St. Stephen” was only pulled out on very rare special occasions.
Despite this, Garcia once remarked that “Mountains of the Moon” was “one of my favorite ones. I thought it came off like a little gem.” It does, like something you’d hear at a Renaissance fair. And if I had to pick just one song by the Dead of this vintage to see them do live, it would probably be “St. Stephen” (no, “Dark Star,” no, “St. Stephen,” no, “Dark Star”...). Even with the hatchet-like unsubtle edits in this clip, it’s still pretty fantastic.
Next week, over 450 theaters nationwide will present the Grateful Dead‘s seventh annual “Meet-Up at the Movies” a one-night-only event featuring the screening of the Dead’s previously unreleased July 12, 1989 concert at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C., a show that was performed in front of a sold-out crowd of more than 40,000 fans. Produced by Fathom Events and Rhino Entertainment this year’s Meet-Up is being held on August 1 and is timed to celebrate what would have been the 75th birthday of Jerry Garcia. Get tickets at the Fathom Events website, where you can enter your zip code to locate the nearest of the 450 theaters that are hosting a screening.
Watch after the jump…