The Greatful Dead

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The Greatful Dead A simple definition of a sub-culture is a group of people who have norms, values, and beliefs that are distinct from those of the main stream culture. A subculture is a group of people who have a distinct way of life. Dead heads fit into this category. They believe that there are many interpretations of reality, and that everyone's interpretations are somewhat valid, but none of them are real. There are two reasons why this sub-culture has continued to exist for as long as it has, the first being a historical one. The Greatful Dead was the house band for many of the electra acid tests, and they were closely tied to everything that happened in Ashbury throughout the sixties. The Dead are the aires of the cultural change, the cultural excitement, and the cultural creativity that occurred throughout the sixties and seventies. Therefore, they are the natural picks for people who are at odds with the main stream 1990's culture. The Greatful Dead have made several decisions throughout their journey that have contributed to their longevity. The decisions they have made contributed to the loyalty among their fans, rather than mass-popularity. One example of this is how the Dead have allowed taping of their shows, which has given people a way to keep in contact with the concert experience between concert dates. It has given people the opportunity to experience concerts over and over again, and to remember just how exhilarating they all are. The Dead also play different music every night. This motivates many people to go to more than one or two shows in a row. For many dead heads, two or three a week is more like it. Right from the beginning, the Greatful Dead gave their fans a name. In the earl... ... middle of paper ... ...in the subculture. The concert is a chance to feel a part of something larger than yourself. It is the opportunity to feel like you belong, the opportunity to share among equals, and the opportunity to have what may approach a spiritual experience. Concerts are joyous occasions where everyone feels unified and as one dead head put it,"when you go to a show, you are there with everybody else, you are not there by yourself". All of the things that the Greateful Dead did such as allowing taping, playing different music every night, and developing common symbols, causes people to stay in touch with each other. It gives them the opportunity to create a community in which they are welcomed and respected. Dead heads are not just loyal to the band and to the music, they are loyal to the community that they have created, belong to, and that means something to them.

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