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Grateful Dead — China-Rider
Album: Europe 72
Avg rating:
7.2

Your rating:
Total ratings: 2065









Released: 1972
Length: 10:31
Plays (last 30 days): 2
Look for a while at the china cat sunflower,
Proud walking jingle in the midnight sun.
Copperdome bodhi drip a silver kimono,
Like a crazy quilt stargown through a dream night wind.

Crazy cat peekin through a lace bandanna,
Like a one-eyed cheshire, like a diamond-eye jack.
A leaf of all colors plays a golden-string fiddle,
To a double-e waterfall over my back.

Comic book colors on a violin river cryin leonardo,
Words from out a silk trombone.
I rang a silent bell, beneath a shower of pearls,
In the eagle-winged palace of the queen chinee.

--

I know you, rider, gonna miss me when Im gone;
I know you, rider, gonna miss me when Im gone;
Gonna miss your baby, from rolling in your arms.

Laid down last night, lord, I could not take my rest;
Laid down last night, lord, I could not take my rest;
My mind was wandering like the wild geese in the west.

The sun will shine in my back door someday.
The sun will shine in my back door someday.
March winds will blow all my troubles away.

I wish I was a headlight, on a north bound train;
I wish I was a headlight, on a north bound train;
Id shine my light through cool colorado rain.

I know you, rider, gonna miss me when Im gone;
I know you, rider, gonna miss me when Im gone;
Gonna miss your baby, from rolling in your arms.
Comments (325)add comment
China - Rider...  Going to see Dead & Co. tomorrow evening in Houston! Wahoo Baby!
 eileenomurphy wrote:

The image on  ...


Leave the politics out of RP.
I dislike this album cover more than just about any I've seen. Am I missing some kind of artistic subtlety?
Ohhhhhhhhh

this rocks

and ya can't beat the album cover

went and saw umphrey mcgee last nite at a outdoor ampitheatrer

first show since in 22 months

jam band playing under perfect nite stars 

vibes were everywhere

and dancing 

thank the good lord for live music in 2011 or 1972  

Fuck, okay.  I get it, I'm a god damn heathen but ffs these guys literally make me angry...
Thank you. I was there that night as well as MANY other nights on that Europe 72 tour. The Dead were at their best as a shoot-em-up barroom band. I tripped my brains out and touched the golden light. Miss you when you're gone? You bet.

This triple disc album was the best music for the money back in the day.
Did not have many albums as a young teen and this one got mega plays.
Well, that was a mess ... but a glorious mess.
Super noodling for sure. Not a huge GD fan but this one is a peach!
Fukingroovin'!

Love the Grateful Dead...grinning like the Cheshire  Cat!  Certainly, miss ya Jerry!
 chinaski wrote:
Europe '72 is one of my top three favorite albums. Thanks Bill!
 

'Reckoning' and "Dead Set" and of course all the "Tapers Bootleg"
 CowboyJJ wrote:
Did not make it to either show at the Hollywood Bowl this year, my regret runs deep.
 
WTF?
 RabbitEars wrote:
I try not to post negative stuff but I just had a realization about the GD (I'm one of those people who find them endlessly boring and same-y, and yes, I've experienced them live more than once). Pleasant but forgettable, and every song sounds a lot like another.

But listening to this particular track I can hear a bit more about why. As most past listens have been on mix cassette tapes in my car or on crackling records, hearing songs I've known for decades on RP using headphones often yields new aural excitement... Wow! This is amazing production! The separation is so interesting! With this track, I feel like the guitar is a mosquito in my right ear and the limp vocals are buried in a muddy fog on the left. As the track drags on, it feels like a competition between the left and right ear. I know people like the looseness of their playing, but when it comes to production, looseness is not groovy. The last minute of the song is just a pure mess.
 You do realize that this is from a Live Concert Tour??

How can someone listen to this and not be just happy?
 Webfoot wrote:

Does it come with ear plugs? . . . .It's a joke!
 

No Joke. I always wore earplugs when nearby the Wall Of Sound.  Ahh! The Good ol Grateful Dead Show Days!
Great days filled with daisies and green✌️
oooooh

dance music for today, march 21

spring equinox 
Everybody bangin' on their instrument exceptionally on this one
RP commenters give me hope for humanity in this country. Of course the music and audio quality aren’t too shabby, either
 RabbitEars wrote:
I try not to post negative stuff but I just had a realization about the GD (I'm one of those people who find them endlessly boring and same-y, and yes, I've experienced them live more than once). Pleasant but forgettable, and every song sounds a lot like another.

But listening to this particular track I can hear a bit more about why. As most past listens have been on mix cassette tapes in my car or on crackling records, hearing songs I've known for decades on RP using headphones often yields new aural excitement... Wow! This is amazing production! The separation is so interesting! With this track, I feel like the guitar is a mosquito in my right ear and the limp vocals are buried in a muddy fog on the left. As the track drags on, it feels like a competition between the left and right ear. I know people like the looseness of their playing, but when it comes to production, looseness is not groovy. The last minute of the song is just a pure mess.
 
Keep listening to various things.  I understand what you mean but when you realize they can completely change it up (usually live stuff) in a way you've never heard or thought possible that's when you have that AHA moment!
 Queue wrote:
This song just makes me feel better.
 
I always have to stop when I hear this. Just beautiful.
 djanecek wrote:
ordered myself a Grateful Dead face mask - cannot wait for it to arrive!
 
Does it come with ear plugs? . . . .It's a joke!
I try not to post negative stuff but I just had a realization about the GD (I'm one of those people who find them endlessly boring and same-y, and yes, I've experienced them live more than once). Pleasant but forgettable, and every song sounds a lot like another.

But listening to this particular track I can hear a bit more about why. As most past listens have been on mix cassette tapes in my car or on crackling records, hearing songs I've known for decades on RP using headphones often yields new aural excitement... Wow! This is amazing production! The separation is so interesting! With this track, I feel like the guitar is a mosquito in my right ear and the limp vocals are buried in a muddy fog on the left. As the track drags on, it feels like a competition between the left and right ear. I know people like the looseness of their playing, but when it comes to production, looseness is not groovy. The last minute of the song is just a pure mess.
Thanks, Bill
ordered myself a Grateful Dead face mask - cannot wait for it to arrive!
Ten, as 'The Eleven' is not allowed!!
“I wish I was a headlight, on a north bound train;
I wish I was a headlight, on a north bound train;
I’d shine my light through cool Colorado rain.”



I’m wondering if these Dead lyrics inspired these amazing Waterboys "Fisherman's Blues"lyrics:


“I wish I was the brakeman
On a hurtlin' fevered train
Crashing a-headlong into the heartland
Like a cannon in the rain
With the beating of the sweepers
And the burnin' of the coal
Counting the towns flashing by
In a night that's full of soul
With light in my head
You in my arms
Woo!”

 eileenomurphy wrote:
I saw the Dead at Watkins Glen! .........what a party!!!
 
With the Allman Bros. and The Band!
 MrStatenIsle wrote:
"The Dead" best describes the energy of this group. Always just sounds like a bunch of 'dudes' thoughtlessly playing instruments, but not listening to one another or trying to make music. Sorry Dead fans.  Ditto for the Allmans, perhaps fun if you're in the band playing in the garage, but for listening, no thanks.
 
Actually feel sorry for those who didn't get to experience a dead show - often the sun shining, everyone smiling, dancing and whirling in circles, no one caring what you looked like or danced like, just thousands of people in exactly the same happy place at the same time. 

The records don't capture that magic, but once you've experienced it, listening to the records can sometimes remind you of it. Sort of like describing the color blue to someone who lives in a black and white world, unless you've seen blue before, you're probably not going to get it. But if you do...
The image on the cover, reminds me of Donald Trump Jr.!
I saw the Dead at Watkins Glen! .........what a party!!!
Still 10 and always will be
My GOD we were high in those days!

Didn't think we could expand our minds out further (farther) but we did one hell of a job trying!

[EDIT]  GOD bless all you survivors
 thatslongformud wrote:
Europe '72 is the best Dead album I have (though i don't have many).  is there one that folks consider even better? 
 
this is hard to beat

to many '72 was the GD high water mark....i love all the years....but 72 is pure magic
"I know you, rider, gonna miss me when I'm gone. "

We sure do. 

 SpencerAR wrote:
With respect, I never got any major exposure to songs over six minutes in length before listening to RP.

Wow!  
 
RP will give you a GREAT musical knowledge if you listen long enough.

Bless Bill & Rebecca
Thank you RP, rock me!!
Rare are the songs that are good and last this long. This is not one of those.
With respect, I never got any major exposure to songs over six minutes in length before listening to RP.

Wow!  
"The Dead" best describes the energy of this group. Always just sounds like a bunch of 'dudes' thoughtlessly playing instruments, but not listening to one another or trying to make music. Sorry Dead fans.  Ditto for the Allmans, perhaps fun if you're in the band playing in the garage, but for listening, no thanks.
 zapeta wrote:
Awesome! Play it again, Bill!
 
I think he just did.
this song makes me feel stoned and I mean this in the BEST of ways!
Did not make it to either show at the Hollywood Bowl this year, my regret runs deep.
This song just makes me feel better.
Think I wore out this vinyl set. 

They could rattle your heart at 500 feet on only  a #2 volume. Damn! A mountain of speakers beside them, including two tie-dyed boxes; and the album sound pumping through the crowd. 
Wow. The band had a lot of "musical muscle" on this album.
My cousin Ronnie gave me this as a graduation present and I wore the hell outta that album. It had just came out and blew me away. Thank you dear cousin, RIP bud.
Long Live  RP

Status to me is only  7 - Quite Likeable but just barely  so I Skip
I wish I could sing like that. 
Awesome! Play it again, Bill!
 Chumbawamba-1984 wrote:
In some instances aging is NOT a good thing.
 
Said Chumbawamba.
Thanks for the lyrics....I was not mssing anything interesting 😸
This is the song that never ends. It just goes on and on, my friend.
Oh jerry here we run into each other again. Holden Saint peters gates open for me! Wheeee whirl twirl hop...
ohhh God i love this song, is like a fresh wind on the face rinding a bike
 chinaski wrote:
Europe '72 is one of my top three favorite albums. Thanks Bill!

And which are the two co-favorite?
Europe '72 is one of my top three favorite albums. Thanks Bill!
best live capture perhaps ever.....THANK YOU
To me  7 - Quite Likeable  
I love the shrill little guitar sound at the top of the riff turnaround. It's got so much freaking personality.
Always one of my fave Dead recordings and dam good live too.
When Jerry would sing that line "I wish I was a headlight on a Northbound train" the second time (for emphasis)... it was powerful and sublime.  Palpable raw energy.  Every. Single. Time.
 
Over 23 years now and I still get chills thinking about some of those good old GD shows.
I need one of those China-Rider bumper stickers immediately. 
 RParadise wrote:
To paraphrase David Crosby, it's electronic Dixieland.  Everyone is soloing at once, but they are all listening to each other at the same time.

Sometimes it's a mess, but more often it's brilliant.

 
If you read Phil L. book, "In search of the sound", you get a good insight into how much the band was influenced by 1950-60s jazz. 

You can kind of here how they continue the "improvisation in a groove"  style that Coltrane and Davis perfected. 
I was fortunate that the Dead came to Morgantown while I was attending WVU in April 1983.  The whole weekend was an experience!
To me  7 - Quite Likeable 
To paraphrase David Crosby, it's electronic Dixieland.  Everyone is soloing at once, but they are all listening to each other at the same time.

Sometimes it's a mess, but more often it's brilliant.
 (Banned) wrote:

Christmas music for the Chineses, dickweed!  Don't let the door slam you on the asshole fuckface.

 
Kinda ill-tempered for a Deadhead, aintcha?!
The Dead`s music is timeless ,I can always listen to that great music{#Bananajam}{#Guitarist}{#Dancingbanana}
 idiot_wind wrote:
Ooooh,  Christmas Music. 

 
Christmas music for the Chineses, dickweed!  Don't let the door slam you on the asshole fuckface.
Surprisingly good.
Far out man!!!{#Bananajam}{#Dance}{#Guitarist}{#Skull}{#Devil_pimp}
Ooooh,  Christmas Music. 
Heck yeah! Great to hear some Dead in the mix...
Just never gets old- even after almost 5 decades, they just don't make them like this anymore.  THANKS!!!
Potentially one of best songs of all time!  Obviously I am biased, but I don't understand how one can be a regular radio paradise listener and hate this song.  Seriously boggles my mind!

I wish I was a headlight on a north bound train, I'd shine my light through the cool Colorado rain... 
 CamLwalk wrote:
CAUTION:  DRIVER MAY BE EXPERIENCING AWESOME CHINA-RIDER   bumper sticker I saw once

 
You saw my Dead Sled?
CAUTION:  DRIVER MAY BE EXPERIENCING AWESOME CHINA-RIDER   bumper sticker I saw once
Smells like crappy weed, sweat, puke, beer, more sweat, bad breath, and sunburned skin, and I've never been to one of their concerts. For just that reason.
Yes! Did not really appreciate them back then. Now, I miss em when they're gone
Goes nowhere. Monotonous, meandering, off key, out of tune. Bump down. Auto PSD material. 
At the very moment I send support, The Grateful Dead comes on. Oh, irony! Obviously Bill has a sense of humor!
Still the best dance band..
 VH1 wrote:
I can only put it down to massive drug overdose in those days that this crappy band ever got a recording contract. 

Was ist with Richie Finestra by any chance? {#Beat}

 


Most Interesting Man in the World laughing. Uproariously.


You sound like my brother, who's convinced that Apple's success (undeserved!) is due to a mass hysteria/hypnosis effect. (Even though he owns a Mac notebook and an iPhone). 
 ojibwe wrote:
Just awful. Drags on and on and — well, on. If I never hear Dead again it will be too soon.

 
Just pointless.  If I never hear someone whine on and on about a song on RP, when they can easily hit the PSD, it will be too soon.
Summer nights. Outdoor concerts. Moonlight. Sweaty bodies. Women spinning like dervishes. Thousands of people. Grooves. 
And one vibe connects everything at once. And then it's gone.

 
{#Roflol} I know you rider (Pine Hill Project) followed by China Cat and I know You RIder??  Bill you're a nut, and its AWESOME!!
One of my favorite Dead songs, thanks Bill.
Its just that the music was sooooo good.
I hit the PSD button.... can you see me smile, smile, smile {#Daisy}
 ojibwe wrote:
Just awful. Drags on and on and — well, on. If I never hear Dead again it will be too soon.

 
That's why there's that PSD button.
The Dixie Chicks' bluegrass version of this is much, much better.
Just awful. Drags on and on and — well, on. If I never hear Dead again it will be too soon.
 VH1 wrote:
I can only put it down to massive drug overdose in those days that this crappy band ever got a recording contract. 

 
Yeah, the record exec just shoved his face into a huge pile of blow like Scarface, then said, "OK boys, sign rightcheer!!...".

Idiot. The Dead never did sell any records, concert tickets, merch...
 jbunniii wrote:
I want to like these guys more than I do. The guitar noodling is enjoyable enough, but the singing is too hillbilly and too repetitive. Do they have any instrumental albums along the lines of Zappa's "Shut Up and Play Your Guitar"?

 
No.  They seem to have been fine with the way their voices sounded singing the songs that they wrote themselves for themselves. 

However, if you would like to hear other voices singing GD classics, there is a brand new 5 CD project out called Day of the Dead which features 5 discs and numerous contemporary artists singing the Dead.  Members of The National curated the project and some of the artists include (The National, Lucinda Williams, The War On Drugs, Wilco, Mumford and Son, and many, many more)

Also, the album Deadicated from 1992 is quite good and some of the tracks from it are featured here on RP.

For my money, though, nobody would be better singing the Grateful Dead than Jerry and Bobby (and occasionally Phil, Pigpen, and Brent).  Donna, on the other hand, is another story.
One of the best Dead live recordings ever. Two great songs segueing perfectly together. Thanks for playing.
I can only put it down to massive drug overdose in those days that this crappy band ever got a recording contract. 

Was ist with Richie Finestra by any chance? {#Beat}
 Carl wrote:
One of the better GD renditions; however, their harmony near the end wouldn't be confused with CSN(&Y), pitch-wise.

 
I don't know if the Dead were ever known as a tight band; certainly their singing was largely meh. But today—a quiet and comfortably hot summer day—this really works for me. 

6 —> 8 
I want to like these guys more than I do. The guitar noodling is enjoyable enough, but the singing is too hillbilly and too repetitive. Do they have any instrumental albums along the lines of Zappa's "Shut Up and Play Your Guitar"?
 skyguy wrote:
I got kind sick of this for about 20 years but right now it feels pretty good. Like seeing an old friend.{#Dance}

 
ditto... making me reminisce about college in the late 80s, post "Touch of Grey", when all of a sudden every college kid thought they were a Dead Head and you could hear this blasting from dorm rooms everywhere... 
Engaging in Grateful Dead debates is exceeded in irritation only by Bernie-Hillary bitching. Just stfu and realize that there are different perspectives but there is a common appreciation that music is good. That said, I don't dig all live Dead but the combination of these two songs is just outstanding. Must've been something to be at this show.

and this following Cassidy was just what I wanted.  thanks, Bill
I got kind sick of this for about 20 years but right now it feels pretty good. Like seeing an old friend.{#Dance}
  Piranga wrote:
I just find this to be an uninteresting ramble.

  RabbitEars wrote:

endless pointless tooling

 
Endless... maybe.  Uninteresting... never.  You could just follow the drum track alone on this live wonder and be sonically satisfied.

Ah, the pop music fan.  Everything needs to be in 3 minute bites.  I hear they had this thing called American Idol but, sadly, you missed it.
 Piranga wrote:
I just find this to be an uninteresting ramble.

 
endless pointless tooling
love it!
I just find this to be an uninteresting ramble.
I thought the last song was Grateful Dead but it was Suzanne Vega. Great segue to this.
hate that my mp3s of this are separate songs
One of the better GD renditions; however, their harmony near the end wouldn't be confused with CSN(&Y), pitch-wise.
If I haven't heard the Dead for awhile and need a fix (which is rare), this is always a go to album.
Man, this is some gooood licorice!
 I didn't have this CD  and this is wonderful. dedicated deadhead. WorkEd for Bill Graham and  the dead in San Francisco Bay Area .
stop, please.
why does PSD not work for me? Who hates me this much? I'm a nice person. 
 Ahnyer_Keester wrote:
It must be me. I just don't like the Dead, even when I don't know it is them.

 No, it's not just you. I guarantee it. 


for me this is the must have Dead album
It must be me. I just don't like the Dead, even when I don't know it is them.
Fabulous.