Did David Crosby play with the Grateful Dead? Late musician's collabs explored

Caitlyn Hart January 20, 2023
Did David Crosby play with the Grateful Dead? Late musician's collabs explored
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Amid news of the passing of David Crosby, music lovers are looking back at the career of a legend. As the world mourns we look as Crosby’s career and ask – was he in the Grateful Dead?

The sad news of Crosby’s death was confirmed on Wednesday (January 18, 2023) by a source close to the rocker. Since then, tributes have been rolling in for the man who helped shape the sound of rock in the Sixties and beyond.

As the world mourns, people have been looking back at Crosby’s career including what bands he was a member of. One band keeps coming up, the Grateful Dead. So let’s take a look at Crosby’s career and find out if he was a member of the band.

Photo by David Crotty/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Crosby Stills & Nash, Grateful Dead fans mourn David Crosby

David Crosby, born August 14, 1941, was a singer, songwriter and guitarist. The man who helped shape the sound of Sixties rock and beyond died on Wednesday night at the age of 81.

Crosby left a lasting imprint on music, not just with his solo work but through the bands he helped form and his collaborations. He was a founding member of both The Byrds and Crosby, Stills & Nash.

Crosby joined The Byrds alongside Gene Clark, Michael Clarke, Chris Hillman and Jim McGuinn in 1964. He appeared on the band’s first five albums and produced the original line-up’s 1973 reunion album. After parting ways, Crosby went on to form Crosby, Stills & Nash with Stephen Stills and Graham Nash in 1968.

As news of Crosby’s death makes headlines, fans have been mourning the loss of the rock icon. Fellow music legends and Hollywood stars such as Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys and Christina Applegate have taken to Twitter to express their condolences.

Was David Crosby in the Grateful Dead?

No. David Crosby was never a member of the Grateful Dead, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t work with them during his career.

The collaboration between Crosby and Grateful Dead lead singer Jerry Garcia came to be known as David And The Dorks. It was a short-lived venture that also featured Grateful Dead members Phil Lesh, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann. It isn’t clear which drummer played in David And The Dorks but Garcia has talked about their concerts and mentioned both drummers.

This venture was short-lived with the band playing a few concerts in San Francisco Bay Area clubs. They played three nights in a row at the Matrix and one concert at the Pepperland in Marin County. Just as quickly as it happened it was over and Garcia and Crosby never jointly led a band in concert again.

Tributes roll in

David Crosby was a legend who not only helped to shape the sound of Sixties rock but the music we hear today.

As news of his death circulates, fans and friends have taken to social media to pay tribute.

Many of Crosby’s friends such as Nils Lofgren have been paying tribute to Crosby on Twitter. Nils tweeted: “Dear Croz, Rest in Peace and Song old friend. Much Love and Healing to Jan and Django, from Nils and Amy.”

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Caitlyn is a freelance journalist and editor. She has a degree in multimedia journalism from Glasgow Caledonian University and a HND from the City of Glasgow College. Her work has featured in various publications including The Gazette (Johnstone and Renfrewshire), The Ferret, Glasgow Standard, MXDWN UK, and Money Jar magazine. She has a varied portfolio that has covered everything from light-hearted entertainment news to hard-hitting investigative pieces. When Caitlyn isn’t working she can be found exercising with her cocker spaniel, which is a match made in heaven as both are nosy, sociable, and never take no for an answer. Caitlyn also enjoys yoga, reading, binging Netflix, and drawing/ painting in her spare time.