The Eleven

Lyrics: Robert Hunter
Music: Phil Lesh

These are the words as set out in Robert Hunter's "Box Of Rain":

No more time to tell how
This is the season of what
Now is the time of returning
With our thought jewels polished and gleaming

Now is the time past believing
The child has relinquished the reign
Now is the test of the boomerang
Tossed in the night of redeeming

Eight-sided whispering hallelujah hatrack
Seven-faced marble eye transitory dream doll
Six proud walkers on jingle-bell rainbow
Five men writing in fingers of gold
Four men tracking the great white sperm whale
Three girls wait in a foreign dominion
Ride in the whalebelly
Fade away in moonlight
Sink beneath the waters
To the coral sands below
Now is the time of returning
In practice, the Grateful Dead missed out some of the lines and sang the two halves interspersed. My best effort at how they sang it is:
Weir & Lesh
No more time to tell how
This is the season of what
Garcia
Eight-sided whispering hallelujah hatrack
Weir & Lesh
Time of returning
Thought jewels polished and gleaming
Garcia
Six proud walkers on the jingle-bell rainbow (note a)
Weir & Lesh
Time past believing
The child has relinquished the reign
Garcia
Five men writing with fingers of gold (note a)
Weir & Lesh
Now is the test of the boomerang
Garcia
Three girls waiting in a foreign dominion
{Weir & Lesh
{Tossed in the night of redeeming
{Garcia
{Riding in the whalebelly, fade away in moonlight
Garcia
Sink beneath the waters to the coral sands below
Notes
(a) in outtakes from "Aoxomoxoa", Garcia sings the lines "Five men writing ..." and "Four men tracking ..." but not "Six proud walkers ..."

The liner notes to "Live/Dead" reproduce the lyrics in the order set out by Robert Hunter, but with some minor variations that reflect the way Garcia sang some of the lines:
Seven-faced marble eyed transitory dream doll
Six proud walkers on the jingle-bell rainbow
Five men writing with fingers of gold
Four men tracking down the great white sperm whale
Three girls waiting in a foreign dominion
Riding in the whalebelly
With "The Other Ones" Bob Weir sings the lyrics in the order Hunter set them out (using the version in the "Live/Dead" liner notes). Phil Lesh & Friends sing the lyrics with the two parts overlapping in the way the Dead did the song

Grateful Dead and Related Recordings
     Date Album
     23 Jan 1968 Road Trips Volume 2, Number 2 (bonus disc)
     14 Feb 1968 Road Trips Volume 2, Number 2
     23 Feb 1968 Dick's Picks Vol 22
     24 Feb 1968 Dick's Picks Vol 22
     16 Mar 1968 So Many Roads (1965-1995)
     17 Mar 1968 Download Series Vol 6
     13 Aug 1968 Aoxomoxoa (note 1) (note 2)
     24 Aug 1968 Two From The Vault
     23 Jan 1969 Download Series Vol 12
     26 Jan 1969 Live Dead
     11 Feb 1969 Fillmore East 2-11-69 (note 2)
     27 Feb 1969 Fillmore West 1969 -The Complete Recordings
     28 Feb 1969 Fillmore West 1969 - The Complete Recordings
      1 Mar 1969 Fillmore West 1969 - The Complete Recordings
      2 Mar 1969 Fillmore West 1969 - The Complete Recordings
     26 Apr 1969 Dick's Picks Vol 26
     27 Apr 1969 Dick's Picks Vol 26
     23 May 1969 Road Trips Volume 4, Number 1
     24 May 1969 Road Trips Volume 4, Number 1
      8 Nov 1969 Dick's Picks Vol 16
     11 Dec 1969 Dave's Picks Volume 10 (bonus disc)
     20 Dec 1969 Dave's Picks Volume 6
     17 Jul 1998 The Strange Remain (The Other Ones)

Recordings from dead.net Tapers Section

"The Dead" Concert Recordings

Ratdoglive CDs and downloads
 
Phil Lesh and Friends Recordings
     30 Mar 2002 There And Back Again (note 3)
     19 May 2006 Live At The Warfield

Phil Lesh and Friends Digital Download Series

Furthur Digital Downloads and CDs
 
Other Recordings
     Date Album Recorded By
     1989 Juggling Suns Solar Circus
     2001 Great Sky River Jazz Is Dead
Notes
(1) bonus track on remastered album, first released as part of the box set The Golden Road (1965-1973)
(2) jam only - no lyrics
(3) included on a bonus disk with early copies of "There And Back Again"
(4) a recording from Mickey and the Heartbeats playing at the Matrix on 30 Oct 1968 (jam only: no lyrics) has also been issued on CD, though not officially by the Dead


Futher Information
For an online discussion of the lyrics to this song see the deadsongs.vue conference on The Well.
For more information on recordings see Matt Schofield's Grateful Dead Family Discography
For information on references in the lyrics see David Dodd's Annotated Grateful Dead Lyrics
For online chords and TAB see www.rukind.com

 


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