The Obama team was instrumental in the band's latest comeback as the Dead (no longer Grateful, alas). The estranged band members were invited to play an Obama rally in Pennsylvania in October, and things went so well that the core surviving members -- guitarist Bob Weir, bassist Phil Lesh, drummers Hart and Bill Kreutzmann -- decided to keep rolling. They returned to play the Inaugural Ball Jan. 20 in Washington, and this month embarked on a 23-date tour that includes concerts May 4-5 at the Allstate Arena. The touring lineup also includes singer-guitarist Warren Haynes (of Gov't Mule and the Allman Brothers) and keyboardist Jeff Chimenti (of Weir's band RatDog).
Dead Ahead is a concert video by the Grateful Dead. It was recorded at Radio City Music Hall in New York City on October 30 and October 31, 1980, and released in 1981. An expanded version was released in 2005. In contrast to other Dead concert videos, Dead Ahead contains acoustic as well as electric song performances.
In September and October 1980, the Grateful Dead did a concert tour of shows with three sets each, one acoustic set followed by two electric sets. The acoustic sets were the first the band had performed since the early '70s. The tour comprised 15 shows at The Warfield in San Francisco, 2 shows at the Saenger Theatre in New Orleans, and 8 shows at Radio City Music Hall in New York.
Dead Ahead contains songs from the last two New York concerts, October 30 and October 31, 1980. Although the video was compiled from multiple performances, and is shorter than one of the three-set concerts, it follows the general format of one of the shows, starting with some acoustic material and proceeding to a longer section of amplified music, including a somewhat edited Drums and Space .