Here’s the song list, organized by my subjective opinion of difficulty:
- (Relatively) Easy: Sugaree, They Love Each Other, Cold Rain and Snow, Bertha, Peggy-O, Sisters and Brothers, Franklin’s Tower, Shelter, It’s all over now
- Intermediate: Mississippi Half Step, Brown-eyed Women, Ramble on Rose
- More difficult: Eyes of the World, Crazy Fingers, Iko Iko, Scarlet-Fire, Estimated
By “relatively easy”, I mean it’s not hard to get to the point where you can play through the song badly from start to end. Getting the correct “groove” is quite another issue. Indeed, I put Iko into the difficult category (even though it’s just two chords) because of its groove.
So, if you’re starting from scratch, maybe emphasize the easy ones at first.
Lyrics and Chords
I’ve extracted out the pages for the above songs into a single PDF so you don’t have to print out the massive archive of dead songs.
- Click here to download the lyrics from the first jam.
- Click here to download the additional lyrics for the second jam (Estimated, Ramble on Rose, It’s all over now).
I appreciate Jennifer’s efforts to provide Shakadown versions of these songs, but if you’re going to try to learn them, please aim a little higher!
Here’s some additional versions to help you understand what we were striving for.
- 11/24/78. Leisurely pace, good for learning.
- 5/8/77. Attack of the swoopy Phil bass. Listen to Bob count off 7. (The URL cuts off the first 65 seconds of tuning)
It’s all over now
- 7/17/89. Classic grateful dead transmogrification of a classic tune.
Ramble on rose
- Europe 72. The one we all fell in love with, overdubbing and all.
- 10/31/80. Wait for it… wait for it…. “..just like New York City…” SCREAM!!!!
They love each other
- 5/8/77. My favorite. There are two arrangements of this tune, the original “fast” tempo one and this “slower” one from the mid-70s onward. I prefer the slower one.
Cold rain and snow
- 10/31/80. Couldn’t find a version on youtube that I loved but this one is OK. Halloween show.
- Skull and Roses. Early 70’s version. Weir plays as much lead as Jerry.
- 4/12/78. Totally different groove. 1978 was my first year of seeing a lot of the Dead.
- Jerry’s feelings on Bertha through the years. Worth a listen to see how the song evolved from 71, 74, 77, 79,81, 85, 95.
- 9/3/77. Pretty authoritative.
Sisters and Brothers
- Studio version. Takes me right back to my dorm room! Just as good as any live version to me.
- 10/31/80. Halloween. Pretty high energy version.
Mississippi Half Step:
- Studio version. I haven’t heard this version in decades until tonight. Totally forgot about that fiddle! Vassar Clements!
- 5/7/77. The more traditional rock arrangement.
- Europe ’72. This is a good version for focusing on the bass line to see how Phil Lesh played. Very melodic, syncopated.
- 5/8/77. A considerably more up-tempo version. Weir’s playing is just superb.
Eyes of the world:
- 10/74 (Grateful Dead Movie). Check out the noise canceling microphones from the Wall of Sound, arguably the most complex, best sounding, and least cost-effective PA ever designed and implemented. Also good for seeing the guy blowing up fire on stage.
- Studio Version. They clearly knew what they were doing.
- Studio version. Good for learning from.
- 6/26/76. As the poster notes, the “quintissential hybrid of rock, jazz, and reggae. There has been and never will be anything like it”.
- Jerry warming up backstage playing Crazy Fingers. He used to be a banjo player.
- 1989, New Orleans, Neville Brothers and Dixie Cups. Wave that flag, wave it wide and high.
- 2010, JazzFest, New Orleans. Joanne and I were there!
- 7/10/89. Just for the record, a Dead version. The Neville Brothers were probably shaking their heads in amusement. Four randomly chosen New Orleans high school band kids could knock out a funkier version. 🙂
- 5/8/77. The definitive live version. Listen to Phil’s “swooping” bass lines . The transition from Scarlet to Fire has been the subject of countless stoned Deadhead conversations.
- Studio Version. Rough around the edges after that 5/8/77 version, wouldn’t you say?
- 10/74 Grateful Dead Movie. Gives a visual sense for the interlocking guitar parts.
Selected Old and in the Way:
- Wild Horses (classic) Chords: Bm/G/Bm/G/Am/C/G/D etc.
- Midnight Moonlight (classic, +Tony Rice) Chords: ||: G/D/Am/D/C/F :|| ||: F/C/F/C/F/C/G :||
- Hobo Song (classic) Chords: ||: G/Em/C/Am/F/Am/G :|| ||: B7/C/Cm/G/D/G :||