Rock Skully, the man who signed the Grateful Dead to their first management contract, passed away Tuesday (12/16) after a lengthy battle with lung cancer. The raspy voiced, free speaking Skully was well known among the group's fan base. He managed the group during its first 20 years, signing them after seeing them for the first time at a Ken Kesey Acid Test. His unorthodox approach to managing the band rankled some in the industry some believe it factored into the group's performance at Woodstock being left out of the film about the 1969 festival. Skully and David Dalton collaborated on the book Living With The Dead.