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A celebration of the Grateful Dead's music, 'Day of the Dead' was created and curated by brothers Aaron and Bryce Dessner of The National. A life-long love affair with the Dead, shared with the Devendorfs, was born in those teenage years and crested when The National were invited to play a HeadCount.org fundraiser with Bob Weir in March 2012. The band assembled for this event learned over 25 Grateful Dead songs, and most of those players went on to form the 'house band' heard on many of Day of the Dead's tracks. The compilation is a wide-ranging tribute to the songwriting and experimentalism of the Dead which took four years to record, and features over 60 artists from varied musical backgrounds, 59 tracks and is almost 6 hours long. Produced by Aaron Dessner, and co-produced by Bryce Dessner and Josh Kaufman, many of the tracks feature an all-star house band made up of Aaron, Bryce, fellow National bandmates and brothers Scott and Bryan Devendorf, Josh Kaufman, and Conrad Doucette along with Sam Cohen and Walter Martin. The record shows the broad reaching impact and legacy of the Grateful Dead, both culturally and musically. It features tracks from War on Drugs, Courtney Barnett, Bonnie Prince Billy, Tim Hecker, Bill Callahan, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Phosphorescent, Lucinda Williams, Kurt Vile, Mumford and Sons and more.
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