Dark Star Orchestra Announces European Tour Celebrating ‘Europe ‘72’ 50th Anniversary

The Grateful Dead tribute act will perform in the UK, France, Germany and Italy this September.

By Scott Bernstein Mar 21, 2022 1:00 pm PDT

Grateful Dead tribute act Dark Star Orchestra confirmed details of nine European tour dates spanning September 13 – 25. The run comes in honor of Grateful Dead’s famed 1972 European tour that was documented on the iconic triple live LP, Europe ’72.

DSO starts the trip across the Atlantic at Shepherd’s Bush Empire in London on September 13. The band then plays the Olympia in Paris on September 17 before heading to Germany for shows in Cologne on September 18, Frankfurt on September 19, Berlin on September 20 and Munich on September 23. It’s then off to Italy to conclude the excursion with concerts in Milan on September 23, Florence on September 24 and Rome on September 25. Tickets for DSO’s European tour dates go on sale this Friday, March 25 at 6 a.m. ET.

The nine-stop tour includes four shows in cities the Grateful Dead played during their run through Europe that came between April 7 and May 26, 1972. Notably, the Grateful Dead performed at the Olympia on May 3, 1972 — the same venue where DSO will take the stage on September 17. “It is an honor of my lifetime to pay tribute to such a transformative event that we all have come to know as Europe ‘72,” Dark Star Orchestra keyboardist Rob Barraco stated in a press release.

Dark Star Orchestra will recreate GD setlists used on their Europe 72 tour at all nine of their own September performances. Additionally, DSO will present the Dead’s April 8, 1972 setlist 50 years to the day later during their appearance at Skull & Roses Festival in Ventura, California and will do the same on May 13, when they utilize the Dead’s May 13, 1972 setlist at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, New York.

DSO lead guitarist Jeff Mattson will use Jerry Garcia’s “Alligator” axe during DSO’s performances at Skull & Roses and at The Capitol Theatre. The 1955 Fender Stratocaster which Jerry used during the Dead’s 1972 tour of Europe comes on loan from Grateful Guitar Foundation’s Andy Logan.

“Grateful Guitars is thrilled that Dark Star Orchestra is celebrating the Grateful Dead’s legendary Europe ’72 tour’s 50th anniversary,” noted Logan. “We’re excited to celebrate some specific show anniversaries this year in the United States and especially to ‘take that ride again’ and tour Europe with the band and our loving tribe. We know this will enliven Deadheads around the world and will help ensure this music thrives for generations.”