Grateful Dead hasn’t played a show in 16 years. Yet the band just sold through all 7200 individually numbered, limited edition versions of EUROPE ’72: THE COMPLETE RECORDINGS in four days. Each box set sells for $450.
When you do the math, that’s $3,240,000. And this is merely the opening round. The band will continue to offer the 72-disc collection for $450, it just won’t come with all the cool packaging and shit.
“Well love is love and not fade away.”
The now sold out limited edition version comes housed in a replica steamer trunk reminiscent of the ones prevalently used at the time. Along with the music–a vast majority of which is previously unreleased–the travel chest contains tour memorabilia, a coffee-table book with never-before-seen photos and a comprehensive essay by noted author Blair Jackson. Both the limited edition and CD-only versions are set to ship in September.
EUROPE ’72: THE COMPLETE RECORDINGS offers a snapshot of a band at the top of its game, still ascending in the wake of three straight hit albums—Workingman’s Dead, American Beauty, and the live Grateful Dead a.k.a. “Skull & Roses”. It had been a year since the lineup had gone to its single-drummer configuration, six months since Keith Godchaux had been broken in as the group’s exceptional pianist, and this marked the first tour to feature Donna Godchaux as a member of the touring band.
I’d like to see the band makes other definitive tour collections. Europe ’90, for instance, would be one I’d make room for, given that I was in Stockholm, Essen, Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfort, Paris and London to hear every note.