6 Road Songs from the Dead

Well, our post-Dead & Company Colorado visit draws to a close tomorrow and we start the long drive back to Austin. Nothing like a few road songs from the good ol’ Grateful Dead to ease into the miles ahead.

Golden Road to Unlimited Devotion: opening tune from their debut album but retired from performance since 1967 — until resurrected at last year’s “Fare Thee Well” shows in Chicago.

On the Road Again
: not the Willie Nelson tune but the traditional folk tune, often included in the acoustic sets the Dead often featured in the 70s and early 80s — long before MTV, much less the “Unplugged” series

: THE Dead road song. Robert Hunter, lyricist, once said they originally thought to keep adding verses as they toured through the years, but the song crystallized around the recorded version and no additional verses were ever played by the Dead (though Hunter did write some). Given Bob Weir’s legendary difficulty remembering all the lyrics as thy are, that’s probably a good thing.

Hell in a Bucket
: not so much a true “road song,” but this one has to be included simply for the great chorus lines:

“I may be going to hell in a bucket
But at least I’m enjoying the ride.”

Going Down the Road Feelin’ Bad
: Woody Guthrie penned it, many performers sing it, but the Dead live it, taking all of us Deadheads, from former to future, on the endless Long Strange Trip.

Finally, from the last days of the Dead, So Many Roads, seen here from July 9, 1995 —the last concert before Jerry Garcia’s death one short month later.

Tomorrow, we’ll be going down one more road — feeling good and heading home.

About bullersbackporch

I am a native Austinite, a high-tech Luddite, lover of music, movies and stories and a born trainer-explainer.
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