Grateful Dead: “Franklin’s Tower”

ALBUM: Blues for Allah

YEAR: 1974

WRITERS: Jerry Garcia, Bill Kreutzmann, Robert Hunter

One of two singles off¬†Blues for Allah, it didn’t chart.

The memories Grateful Dead guitarist Bob Weir has of recording “Franklin’s Tower” aren’t so much about the song itself, but about making the album it was a part of. “I built a studio at my house and we moved in there and we spent, I guess, most the summer making Blues for Allah, maybe even more, four or five months, something like that. Most of the time we spent arguing over whether we should be getting the mixed nuts with peanuts in them or if we should have the cocktail mix without peanuts — wasting a lot of time and not getting down to recording. So we finally recorded the whole thing in about two weeks when the deadline started coming.”

The Dead, The Allman Brothers and The Band drew 600,000 to Summer Jam at Watkins Glen in upstate New York, on July 28th, 1973. At the time, it was the largest pop festival crowd ever.


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