The Meaning of the Grateful Dead’s ‘Days Between’

Having defined the psychedelic rock scene of the ’60s with their fusion of genres and talent for improvisation, the Grateful Dead continues to influence rock music to this day.

As a result, rock fans worldwide will undoubtedly remember the untimely passing of one of the band’s members, Jerry Garcia, on August 9, 1995. Ever since, Deadheads (the name given to fans of the band) have honored Garcia with a symbolic event known as Days Between.

To learn more about the meaning of Days Between and the inspiration behind it, read on!

Honor Jerry Garcia during the Days Between week of specials on the Grateful Dead Channel

Days Between is all about celebrating and remembering Jerry Garcia, one of the founding members of Grateful Dead, which formed in Palo Alto, CA, in 1965.

As the band’s lead guitarist and vocalist, Garcia was known for both his musical and technical skills. Additionally, many admired Garcia’s talent for improvisation. Because of this, people often viewed Garcia as the leader of the band, something he strongly denied.

After his death in a drug rehabilitation facility in 1995, Deadheads looked for a way to honor Garcia, and so Days Between was born. Days Between refers to the period of August 1-9. Garcia was born on August 1, 1942, and died on August 9, 1995, so these dates are seen by fans as a symbolic representation of Garcia’s life.

The name Days Between comes from the band’s song of the same name. First performed in 1993, the song is one of the final works to come from Garcia and his bandmate Robert Hunter. The song is full of nostalgia and longing — a fitting soundtrack to honor Garcia’s life.

Want to celebrate Days Between? Tune in to Grateful Dead Channel (Ch. 23) for the band’s music, unreleased concert recordings, and even rare archival interviews with Jerry Garcia himself. For more, check out SiriusXM!

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