Grateful Dead 1985 Spring Tour

Grateful Dead 1985 Tour poster


The Spring Tour of 1985 started on March 21 at Hampton Roads in Virginia and ran through 13 more shows, concluding at the Philadelphia Spectrum on April 8. The Boys were still pretty nimble in those days as they played the 14 shows in just 19 days and in 6 cities.



This poster is known as fan-generated art, by Byron Erwin. The design reflected the 1981 CD, “Dead Set,” depicting both San Francisco and New York City, attached by bridges and on a hill in the middle of this sits a howling Dire Wolf. By the way, the dire wolf was a real animal, about the same size as the largest modern wolves, weighing between 130-150 pounds but becoming extinct about 9,500 years ago.



The poster is full of funny little quirks perhaps an apt reflection of what might go on during a tour with the Dead. Venues are listed inconsistently, some citing the city, some citing the arena and one, just the county, “Nassau,” which is also misspelled.  If you were on tour, you got it and hey even forgave the artist for writing “Portland OR,” instead of Maine – the “OR” is rubbed out if you take a close look.

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