Deal

My Three Decades of Drumming, Dreams, and Drugs with the Grateful Dead
Narrated by: Peter Berkrot
Length: 13 hrs and 5 mins
4.6 out of 5 stars (401 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

On their 50th anniversary comes a groundbreaking rock-and-roll memoir by one of the founding members of the Grateful Dead.

The Grateful Dead are perhaps the most legendary American rock band of all time. For 30 years, beginning in the hippie scene of San Francisco in 1965, they were a musical institution, the original jam band that broke new ground in so many ways. From the music to their live-concert sound systems and fan recordings, they were forward-thinking champions of artistic control and outlaw artists who marched to the beat of their own drums.

Bill Kreutzmann, one of their founding members and drummer for every one of their over 2,300-odd concerts, has written an unflinching and wild account of playing in the greatest improvisational band of all time. Everything a rock music fan would expect is here, but what sets this apart is Bill's incredible life of adventure, which was at the heart of the Grateful Dead experience. This was a band that knew no limits, and Bill lived life to the fullest, pushing the boundaries of drugs, drums, and high times, through devastating tragedy and remarkable triumph.

But at this book's beating heart is the music - theirs and others. Some of the greatest musicians and concerts were a part of the Grateful Dead's career, from sharing the stage with Janis Joplin, Bob Dylan, and the Who, to playing in the Acid Tests, the Monterey Pop Festival, Woodstock, and Altamont. Bill's life is a chronicle of American music and pop-culture history, and his epic personal journey is one of sonic discovery and thrilling experiences.

©2015 Bill Kreutzmann (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about Deal

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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Decent but not great

The narrators voice was really annoying making Billy sound like a total hillbilly crack addict. Some chapters in the early years drag on a bit but overall pretty good story

6 people found this helpful

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Awesome 1st hand account of the long strange trip!

Who was your favorite character and why?

Billy, of course!! I was pleasantly surprised to hear that the music meant the same thing to him as it does to me!

Have you listened to any of Peter Berkrot’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I was a little disappointed that Billy didn't do the narration but I thought Peter Berkrot did a fine job! He captured the important emotions toward the end of the book for sure.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

My husband and I listened to it traveling to all the shows we went to this summer (Chicago and Phish shows after that). It was a long read but full of beautiful memories and tales from the road. It was never boring or boastful. Great to share the listen with someone so we could discuss what we were hearing!

Any additional comments?

This is a MUST READ for any deadhead. It offers a unique perspective that you won't find when you read Phil's "Search for the Sound". I definitely came away from it with a newfound love and appreciation for Billy K.

4 people found this helpful

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Decent book awful narration

My god the narrator is annoying as heck. Almost makes it unlistenable. Some decent stuff in here but Bill takes some cheap shots at his band mates both alive and dead which don't really add anything and come off as petty meanness more then anything else. Would read Phil's book or one of the other available histories before picking this one up

2 people found this helpful

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Grate inside story of a truly amazing band

I thoroughly enjoyed this tale through the eyes of Grateful Dead drummer Bill Kreutzmann. It spans the length of his career with the band and goes on into the 2000s for the last couple of chapters. I think it was fairly well written and it kept me entertained for its entirety. I would suggest reading this book to any deadhead or anyone wanting a look into the movement that they were part of.

2 people found this helpful

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The Narrator

The book was okay but had a tough time getting through it because the narrator has such an annoying voice.

1 person found this helpful

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beautiful

brought me to tears numerous times. so honest and beautiful. truly a story for everyone.

1 person found this helpful

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Grateful Dead fans this is a must

Learned so many new things about Bill and the Grateful Dead. What a life he’s living. I laughed a lot, cried a little, and feel happy just knowing more of the GD story.

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Not well written

For people who don’t recognize really good writing or solid narrative structure, this book will be just fine. For those who are deadheads or at least big fans, it will be just fine. Yes, the information in the book is great and interesting. Yes, Bill Kreutzmann is one of the coolest guys in the world. The problem is apparently Bill actually did the writing I’m assuming. Usually celebrities use a biographer or at least a good editor. There are many issues with editing, storytelling. It is basically an endless stream of micro anecdotes. The anecdotes are very streamlined, which might be effective for gathering the information, but on the other hand it doesn’t build up for a good narrative. Also, there is a hint of arrogance and Narcissism That doesn’t always sit well. Again not sure if it’s Bill or Someone else who actually did the writing.

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Great story bad narrator

Peter’s voice is very hard to bare most of the time... but great stories in this one

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A different side to the same story.

I have read alot of books about the dead, this was a different side to that story. It was a great story, entertaining and never got boring.