A Swell Dance Concert at the 18,000 seat Nassau Coliseum was sandwiched between the Dead's successful tour of Europe in early 1972 and their release of Wake of the Flood in November, 1973. Missing from the lineup was original keyboardist Ron "Pigpen" McKernan, who had been absent from the band since the Continental tour. Pigpen, who was only 27 when he died on March 8 from liver disease brought on by hard living, was replaced by Keith Godchaux and wife Donna on keyboard and vocals, respectively.
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This item was part of Bill Graham's personal collection and shows some damage from the May 7, 1985 firebombing of his San Francisco office. The attack stemmed from Graham's open and honest criticism of President Reagan's visit to Bitburg Cemetery published in the San Francisco Chronicle.
The oversized poster was printed before the concert on very thin stock. It measures 25" x 38".
The 2nd printing is on smooth opaque cover stock and has a Wolfgang's Vault notation in the lower right hand margin. It was printed in 2008 by the Bill Graham Archives LLC in a 500 copy run. This reprint measures 20 3/8" x 30 7/8".
As the exclusive designer for the Fillmore East, Byrd produced 11 posters for Bill Graham between 1968-71. With his architectural training, powerful linework and sense of dimension and balance, Byrd said his understanding of symmetry "... Led [me] right up to Art Nouveau. Add to that my LSD experiences, and it all connected up somehow." Byrd's credits include concert poster designs for Jimi Hendrix, the Who, the Grateful Dead, movie posters for Godspell and Jesus Christ Superstar, posters for The Pasadena Playhouse productions, cover art for TV Guide, and work for Warner Bros.