What a Long Strange Trip It's Been

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What a Long Strange Trip It's Been
A dimly-lit silhouette of a skeleton
Greatest hits album by Grateful Dead
Released September 1977 (1977-09)
Recorded 1967–1972
Genre Psychedelic rock, country, folk, jam
Length 85:38
Label Warner Bros.
Producer Grateful Dead and Paul L. Wexler
Grateful Dead chronology
Terrapin Station
What a Long Strange Trip It's Been
Shakedown Street
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars [1]
Robert Christgau B[2]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars [3]

What a Long Strange Trip It's Been, subtitled The Best of the Grateful Dead, is a compilation album by the Grateful Dead. Initially, it was a two-record LP released September 1, 1977 by Warner Bros. Records. Even though the band left Warner Bros. after their contract was up in order to form their own label, Grateful Dead Records, Warner Bros. continued to release older material from during the contract period.

It marked the first album release of the studio version of "Dark Star," as well as the alternate single mix of its b-side "Born Cross-Eyed."

The title of the compilation comes from the lyrics of one of Robert Hunter's most famous songs, the line from "Truckin'": Lately it occurs to me: What a long, strange trip it's been.

The album was reissued, both as a 2-CD set and on cassette tape, by Warner Bros. in 1989 when the band was revitalized by their latest albums, In the Dark and Built to Last.

Track listing[edit]

Side one
  1. "New Minglewood Blues" (traditional, credited to McGannahan Skjellyfetti) – 2:34
  2. "Cosmic Charlie" (Jerry Garcia and Robert Hunter) – 5:30
  3. "Truckin'" (Garcia, Hunter, Phil Lesh, and Bob Weir) – 5:03
  4. "Black Peter" (Garcia and Hunter) – 5:42
  5. "Born Cross-Eyed" (Weir) – 2:55
Side two
  1. "Ripple" (Garcia and Hunter) – 4:10
  2. "Doin' That Rag" (Garcia and Hunter) – 4:40
  3. "Dark Star" (Garcia and Hunter) – 2:41
  4. "High Time" (Garcia and Hunter) – 5:12
  5. "New Speedway Boogie" (Garcia and Hunter) – 4:05
Side three
  1. "St. Stephen" (Live, February 27, 1969) (Garcia, Hunter, and Lesh) – 5:22
  2. "Jack Straw" (Live, May 3, 1972) (Hunter and Weir) – 4:48
  3. "Me and My Uncle" (Live, April 29, 1971) (John Phillips) – 3:03
  4. "Tennessee Jed" (Live, May 3, 1972) (Garcia and Hunter) – 7:11
Side four
  1. "Cumberland Blues" (Live, April 8, 1972) (Garcia, Hunter, and Lesh) – 5:41
  2. "Playing in the Band" (Live, April 6, 1971) (Mickey Hart, Hunter, and Weir) – 4:38
  3. "Brown-Eyed Woman" (Live, April 14, 1972) (Garcia and Hunter) – 4:37
  4. "Ramble On Rose" (Live, May 26, 1972) (Garcia and Hunter) – 6:01

Production details[edit]

  • "New, New Minglewood Blues" from The Grateful Dead.
  • "Dark Star" and "Born Cross-Eyed" from "Dark Star"/"Born Cross-Eyed" 7" single.
  • "Cosmic Charlie" and "Doin' That Rag" from Aoxomoxoa.
  • "St. Stephen" recorded live in concert and from Live/Dead.
  • "Black Peter", "High Time" and "New Speedway Boogie" from Workingman's Dead.
  • "Truckin'" and "Ripple" from American Beauty.
  • "Me and My Uncle" and "Playing in the Band" recorded live in concert and from Grateful Dead.
  • "Jack Straw", "Tennessee Jed", "Cumberland Blues", "Brown-Eyed Woman" and "Ramble On Rose" recorded live in concert and from Europe '72.


Grateful Dead
Technical personnel



Year Chart Position
1977 Pop Albums 121[citation needed]


Certification Date
Gold[4] August 24, 2001