The Grateful Dead performed hundreds of original songs, hundreds of times over, throughout a storied thirty-year career. Still, there’s something special about the very first time the band played each song. For songs like “Golden Road (To Unlimited Devotion)” and “Fire On The Mountain,” both of which are staples of the Dead’s canon, we can only imagine what it was like to hear them with fresh ears.

Interestingly, both of those songs were debuted on the same day, March 18th, exactly ten years apart. “Golden Road” came first, jumping out on a 3/18/67 setlist at the Winterland Arena in San Francisco, CA. The band was just making a name for themselves, with the potent guitar tones of Jerry Garcia and the blues-drenched piano of Ron “Pigpen” McKernan. With that sound in mind, “Golden Road” makes its power-packed debut.

Listen to the full audio of that show below:

Grateful Dead – 3/18/1967 – [Full-Show Audio]

[Audio: Grateful Dead]

In the following ten years, the Dead would see a lot of changes. Pigpen would succumb to a combination of alcoholism and disease, and the band relied on Keith and Donna Jean Godchaux to augment their sound. Deadheads lined up in scores, eager to drop out and follow the band on cross-country tours. By 1977, they had reached a new peak, playing incredible shows and writing even more incredible music.

Can You Name Every Grateful Dead Original? Take This Quiz And Find Out

With the new Terrapin Station album on the way, the Grateful Dead were in the heart of their career when they returned yet again to the Winterland on this day in 1977. There, coming out of a monster “Scarlet Begonias,” the group debuted the first full-on version of the Mickey Hart original, “Fire On The Mountain.” Coming out of an experimental creation called “Happiness Is Drumming,” the Hart-penned tune would prove its longevity many times over. Based on a simple two-chord progression, “FOTM” has provided the vehicle for jamming and has even summoned a volcano!

Listen to the debut of “Fire On The Mountain” below:

Grateful Dead – 3/18/1977 – [Full-Show Audio]

[Audio: Grateful Dead]

This concludes another exciting “On This Day” chapter in the Grateful Dead’s history. Enjoy the music!

[Originally published 3/18/16]