Grateful Dead, SDS Ball, Utah, 1969

AOR 4.156  Grateful Dead Poster from 1969. Concert held at University of Utah, SDS Ball, kid with headphones, April 12, 1969 poster by Richard Taylor

Richard Taylor


Grateful Dead, SDS Ball, University of Utah, 1969


First prinitng, lithograph, Condition: Excellent


30 7/16" tall x 19 15/16" wide





Close-up of frame

Close-up of frame

frame at angle


This is an original poster that promoted an April 12, 1969 show that featured the Grateful Dead and Spirit of Creation. The event took place at the Union Ballroom at the University of Utah and was known as the “SDS Ball.” Richard Taylor created this poster, which was later reprinted by Kenvin Lyman. This poster is from the first print run of 300 pieces and it is quite scarce.



The SDS, or, Students for a Democratic Society, were a major left-wing organization across college campuses in the 1960s.  By the late 1960s, protests against the Vietnam War were beginning to take place on campuses all across the nation, and the University of Utah was no exception. A branch of the radical Students for a Democratic Society was organized in 1968, and immediately began trying to disrupt campus life. In October 1969, several thousand students paraded from campus to the Federal Building in downtown Salt Lake City to protest the war.



The concert is available online at with the band opening with Morning Dew and included Good Morning Little Schoolgirl, Doing that Rag, Dark Star, The Eleven and other circa 1969 favorites. The tape also features a two part fairly long story by Bob Weir (with plenty of jumping in by Pigpen) about a yellow dog.



Spirit of Creation was a three-piece “power trio” made up of Chuck Fraher John Mehler and Jay Truax.  They never recorded and were short-lived but the Salt Lake City based group opened for some of the biggest groups of the day including Three Dog Night, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Spirit, The Grateful Dead and many others.  


Back To Top