Are They really Dancing?

Grateful Dead bear have come to be some that the most recognizable and also well love symbols linked with the band. They"ve ongoing to it is in cool all these years even though they"re so cute as to seem nearly corny. In which method they"ve retained their i know good status in spite of the heat fuzzy feelings they create, probably due to the fact that of their association through the mind expanding music and society of the GD scene.

You are watching: What are the grateful dead bears


It"s been said that the thankful Dead bears an initial appeared as a design on Owsley"s blotter acid yet I was under the impression that he marketed his mountain in the kind of pills the resembled small barrels. At least that"s what I check out somewhere, I might be wrong, probably only he knows because that sure.

Owsley is, that course, the well known "LSD millionaire" who was the sound engineer for the band once they an initial started out. A male of countless talents, he to be both a chemist and also the sound wizard affiliated with the production of the Dead"s well known PA device - the "wall of sound". It"s claimed that the massive amounts of high top quality acid he developed in his laboratory were largely responsible because that the start of the summer the love and also the totality San Francisco scene in the Sixties.


It"s famed that Owsley"s nickname is Bear. He was provided this moniker through his friend in his childhood since he grew a most body hair in ~ a young age. The surname stuck and people still refer to him as Bear to this day. I"ve review that Owsley occurred a very unique type of dance at concert while high ~ above acid. Supposedly his friends called it the "dancing bear" and also this is where the ax originates from. Whether any kind of of this is true - i really don"t know. There"s always been a lot of an enig surrounding Augustus Owsley Stanley III.


The first official appearance of the thankful Dead bears together we understand them to be on the ago cover the the album Bear"s choice. They were created by Bob thomas - an old girlfriend of Bear"s that was an completed artist and musician in his own right. He additionally created the "Steal your Face" - the Dead"s famous skull and lightning bolt logo design - and also painted the cover for the album Live/Dead.

Bear"s selection was a tribute to Pigpen who had actually recently pass away and also all the tracks were selected by Owsley. He additionally recorded the music and produced the whole album. In keeping with the album"s theme Thomas incorporated bears in the sheathe art. He was inspired by a generic command slug because that a be afflicted with he found in a printer"s box of fonts.


There"s five various bears - every one is a different color and drawn in a different marching position. They room arranged in a details order because that the marching positions to flow naturally. The proper order is purple, green, yellow, orange, red. If you lined them up in a upper and lower reversal book and also flipped v them quickly they would look choose they were in reality marching along. I uncovered this as soon as I had all the photos in one folder on mine computer and I conveniently clicked through them. I assumed the result was pretty cool - and also yes, ns know, I"m really easily amused...


On the back cover that the album the bears room seen marching in a circle. I say marching instead of dancing since on Owsley"s website he claims "...the bear on the album cover are not really "dancing"...their positions are rather obviously those that a high-stepping march." If you walk to Owsley"s website you deserve to see a photo of the actual printer"s slug, given to Owsley through Thomas before he died.

Whether they"re marching or dancing, thankful Dead bears have discovered a long-term spot in American popular music culture. If friend have any kind of interest in the music that the grateful Dead or classic rock at all, you"re probably familiar with them. They"ve involved represent much more than simply the Dead and also the counterculture, practically joining the mainstream. They can be seen almost everywhere from posters, stickers, crucial chains and also coffee mugs come shirts and also even neckties. Number of companies have actually been producing limited editions that stuffed grateful Dead bears and also it appears they"ve come to be quite collectible.

See more: How To Read Draft Marks On A Ship ? How To Read Ship'S Draft Marks

If you"re interested, you deserve to find numerous of these incredibly cool and also collectible bears at