Buffalo Philharmonic and Grateful Dead tribute band to present “lost” 1970 concert

Posted on: February 25, 2020

On February 25, the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra will perform a program re-creating a concert by the orchestra with the Grateful Dead in 1970—a rare instance in the band’s history for which a live-performance tape does not exist. The original 1970 performance featured the Grateful Dead lineup of Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Ron “Pigpen” McKernan, Bill Kreutzmann, and Mickey Hart with the Buffalo Philharmonic at Kleinhans Music Hall and then-music director Lukas Foss. Though no detailed set list exists for the original event, the BPO pieced one together based on reviews and articles from the time. The concert, part of the orchestra’s BPO Rocks series, will feature the Grateful Dead tribute band Crazy Fingers and the Buffalo Philharmonic guest conducted by Bradley Thacuk. The show is not an exact re-creation; it will feature “Dark Star,” part of the original set list, as well as other Grateful Dead favorites. “That show became not only a monumental piece of Dead fan history, but it also marked one of the earliest collaborations between a rock band and an orchestra,” says Daniel Hart, executive director of the BPO.