Today, alongside the physical and digital release of Wake Of The Flood (50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition), Grateful Dead fans can explore the pivotal album in more distinct detail than ever before. Available at dead.net, Playing In The Band: Wake Of The Flood is an interactive mixing board that delivers an experience of the LP's songs in their most revelatory form. As a continuation of the group's pioneering devotion to complete accessibility – and the latest showcase of their influential ability to share their music and open their archives in brand new ways – Dead Heads can listen, learn and jam along to “Eyes Of The World,” “Stella Blue,” "Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo” and more Wake Of The Flood classics. With the option to solo and combine an array of the album's original multitrack recordings, Playing In The Band's mixing board allows one to fill in for any band member on their instrument of choice. The user could hone their skills and musical mastery of the catalog in real time with Jerry Garcia, Bill Kreutzmann, Phil Lesh and Bob Weir, or they could sit back and hear all of the individual elements that make Wake Of The Flood one of the Grateful Dead's most beautiful, deeply textured and collaborative albums: from Jerry Garcia's pastoral pedal steel to Martin Fierro's saxophone and flute, to the fiddle of bluegrass legend Vassar Clements, the band's first-ever use of synths and more.
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Out now via Rhino, Wake Of The Flood (50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition) arrives as a two-CD and digital set, featuring the album's seven remastered songs and Jerry Garcia's previously unreleased demos for "Eyes Of The World" and "Here Comes Sunshine." The deluxe edition also includes a bonus disc of live material from the final night of a brief tour that immediately followed Wake Of The Flood's release. Recorded at Northwestern University's McGaw Memorial Hall on November 1st, 1973, it captures one of the most creative, inspired jams of the entire run, with "Morning Dew">"Playing In The Band">"Uncle John's Band">"Playing In The Band." Additionally, Wake Of The Flood (50th Anniversary Remaster) is available as a 180-gram black vinyl LP, limited edition 12" vinyl picture disc, limited edition "coke bottle clear vinyl" exclusive to Barnes & Noble, and Dead.net Exclusive, limited edition "Watermark" Custom Vinyl. All pressings of Wake Of The Flood (50th Anniversary Remaster) feature Plangent Processes tape restoration and speed correction and are newly mastered by GRAMMY® Award-winning engineer, David Glasser, and produced for release by Grateful Dead Legacy Manager and Audio Archivist, David Lemieux.
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Furthermore, in celebration of Wake Of The Flood's 50th Anniversary, the Grateful Dead vaults were recently reopened to reveal a treasure trove of previously unheard studio material. For the third edition of The Angel's Share series, more than two hours of expertly-curated session tapes were released for the first time ever on all DSPs worldwide. Similar to previous installments that accompanied milestone reissues of Workingman's Dead and American Beauty, Wake Of The Flood: The Angel's Share brings together the outtakes, alternate versions, and in-studio conversations behind the creation of the album. Unexpected moments and revelations can be found in takes of "Let Me Sing Your Blues Away," Keith Godchaux's first and only vocal on a Grateful Dead studio record, and Bob Weir's continually evolving "Weather Report Suite." Also featured is the track "Phil's Song (Unbroken Chain)" that appeared later on The Mars Hotel. As the curtains are pulled back, Wake Of The Flood: The Angel's Share transports the listener to August 6-17, 1973 at Sausalito, CA's Record Plant, turning it into a fly-on-the-wall experience of the band's joyous and collaborative process.
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Following the recent passing of founding member Ron "Pigpen" McKernan and the temporary exit of drummer Mickey Hart, the Grateful Dead recorded Wake Of The Flood during a period of transition and immense ambition. As the debut album that would be released on their own record label, Grateful Dead Records, it was a crucial first piece and proof of concept for the independent ecosystem and massive community the band were building. A lot hinged on the LP, yet the music on Wake Of The Flood and Wake Of The Flood: The Angel's Share shows a fearless sense of experimentation and optimism. After playing for a record-setting crowd of 600,000 people at Watkins Glen just weeks prior – the biggest concert in North American history at that time – the Dead introduced a fresh studio lineup that included new members Keith and Donna Godchaux on keys and vocals. Together they ushered in a new era of the Grateful Dead, one defined by hope, growth, endurance and accessibility.
In addition to the 2+ hours of tapes featured on Wake Of The Flood: The Angel's Share, the complete 6+ hours of never-before-heard material from Wake Of The Flood sessions will drop on October 15th, exactly 50 years after the album was first released. The recordings will stream live as a YouTube Live Exclusive Event, synced up to the original tape box so viewers can experience it all in real time.
In tandem with Wake Of The Flood's 50th Anniversary, the Good Ol' Grateful Deadcast's current eighth season has been wholly dedicated to the album. While the first two episodes focused on the famed Watkins Glen performances, the latest installments of the podcast have offered track-by-track breakdowns of the LP in full, featuring such special guests as Donna Godchaux, late tour manager Sam Cutler and more.
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