Bill Graham's famous 'breakfast served at dawn' promise was a time-honored New Year's tradition by the time the Grateful Dead, Blues Brothers and New Riders of the Purple Sage closed Winterland in 1978. On the stroke of midnight, balloons cascaded from the ceiling to the strains of Sugar Magnolia, and the Dead, partiers nonpareil, made it abundantly clear why live Dead was superior to studio Dead. John Belushi and the Blues Brothers and NRPS were part of the glorious last concert, and Bill Graham made an appearance to thank the crowd for the last 13 years.
Born in Detroit, Stanley Miller became known as "Mouse" after illustrating countless notebooks with his signature rodent sketch. Miller found an outlet for his creativity in pin-striping cars and airbrushing hot rod designs on posters and T-shirts. Mouse migrated to San Francisco in 1964, where he first met the artists associated with Family Dog, the organization producing dance concerts at the Avalon Ballroom. With collaborator Alton Kelley, Mouse experimented broadly with composition, lettering and imagery: Kelley came up with the ideas and Mouse executed the designs. Mouse and Kelley helped to establish the psychedelic style of expression under the name Mouse Studios.