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You’re doing something right when you’re invited to play at the White House. As part of the “Red, White, and Blues” night, President Obama and PBS hosted performances from Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews, Jeff Beck, Gary Clark, Jr., Shemekia Copeland, Buddy Guy, Mick Jagger, B.B. King, Keb Mo, and more to celebrate 2012’s Black History Month. A stand-out performance from the night features Susan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks, and Warren Haynes doing a stunning rendition of “I’d Rather Go Blind” by Etta James, alongside the White House band featuring Booker T Jones, who acted as bandleader for the night’s series.The three musicians complement one another incredibly in this blues number, as Tedeschi and Haynes exchange vocal harmonies and Trucks showcases his effortless slide-guitar playing – smiles, and goosebumps, all around.Also, check out Trombone Shorty performing “St. James Infirmary” in The White House’s East Wing:
Load remaining images Last night Dark Star Orchestra ended their winter tour with an exclamation point at the Riverside Theater in Milwaukee by playing an original Grateful Dead setlist. The show had a little bit of everything- staples, rarer tunes, Jerry Garcia Band numbers, and of course, fan favorites. It was a great show that left Deadheads remembering days of yore.The first set opened with “Samson and Delilah.” Immediately, fans were questioning what show this was, what year it came from. A scorching “Althea” followed. “Passenger” was next, and many were thinking it must be an early 80s show. However, it was quite evident that it was an original set list when they played the next song, “Let Me Sing Your Blues Away.” The only song Grateful Dead song ever written by keyboardist Keith Godchaux, it was only performed a few times in 1973. Dark Star’s execution was excellent. Another rarely played song in the first set was “Easy to Slip” from Bob Weir’s 1978 solo record, Heaven Help The Fool. Guitarist/singer/Bob Weir-look-a-like Rob Eaton nailed the vocals. A long, jammed-out version of “Shakedown Street” closed the set and foreshadowed the jamming that would come in the second.What Deadhead wouldn’t be happy with a “Jack Straw” opener, followed by an incredible “Scarlet Begonias” into “Fire on the Mountain?” Dark Star Orchestra was covering these favorites with absolute precision, and they were having a great time doing it. One of the most poignant moments from the show occurred when they played “Shining Star.” Originally played by the Manhattans, the Jerry Garcia Band brought it into the realm of Deadheads. Last night Dark Star played it very well. The vocals by Jeff Mattson, Rob Eaton, and Lisa Mackey were superb. The drum beat in “Not Fade Away” thundered as the crowd clapped along. Sandwiched between the rocking song was a gentle and brilliant “Stella Blue.” The night ended fittingly with the “Music Never Stopped” encore.Ultimately, Dark Star Orchestra is a top-notch Grateful Dead experience. It is fun to see both old Deadheads who used to tour with the original GD dancing along with a new, younger generation of fans that never had the opportunity to see the Dead play. Dark Star is quite the tribute to the ultimate jamband, and they will continue to be so as long as they keep playing.Setlist: Dark Star Orchestra at Riverside Theater, Milwaukee, WI – 3/5/16Set I: Samson and Delilah, Althea, Passenger, Let Me Sing Your Blues Away, Ramble on Rose, Beat It On Down the Line, Strange Man, Dire Wolf, Easy to Slip, Shakedown StreetSet II: Jack Straw, Scarlet Begonias >Fire on the Mountain, Estimated Prophet, Shining Star, Drums > Space, Not Fade Away > Stella Blue > Not Fade AwayEncore: Music Never Stopped[All photos courtesy of Daniel Ojeda]
Update 4/21/16: In the wake of Prince’s death, take a moment and watch one of the most jaw-dropping videos of his career. This sort of clip ultimately defines Prince’s abilities as a musician, coming from out of nowhere and performing an incredible guitar solo, then tossing his guitar nonchalantly in the air just seconds before the video ends. Prince is a true legend, and his music will not soon be forgotten. RIP.More than a decade ago, a bevy of musical legends joined forces on stage to help honor George Harrison’s induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In what could be considered one of the most remarkable Rock Hall induction ceremony performances of all time, Prince, Tom Petty, Steve Winwood, Jeff Lynne and George’s son Dhani Harrison took the stage in 2004 to perform an incredibly powerful rendition of The Beatles’ “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.” Prince’s solo is just out of this world, concluding with him mysteriously tossing his guitar into the air.Watch the groundbreaking performance below.
We’re less than one month away from the release of Day Of The Dead, the massive, 59-track tribute album to the Grateful Dead curated by alternative rockers The National. The album is due out on May 20th via 4AD, and so far six of the 59 tracks have been shared. Among them, covers by Phosphorescent & Jenny Lewis, Courtney Barnett, Bruce Hornsby, The War On Drugs and The National have us thoroughly optimistic for the new release.Five Amazing Singles From The 59-Track Grateful Dead Tribute Album Have Been ReleasedDay Of The Dead Tribute Shares Spellbinding Rendition Of ‘Terrapin Station’ [Listen]Today, five new singles have been released, including versions of songs by Jim James, Charles Bradley, Perfume Genius, and more! Check out all five, streaming below:Jim James & Friends – CandymanCharles Bradley & Menahan Street Band – Cumberland BluesUnknown Mortal Orchestra – Shakedown Street Perfume Genius, Sharon Van Etten & Friends – To Lay Me Down Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy & Friends – Rubin & CheriseTo pre-order the release, head here.
A full gallery of images can be seen below. After bringing out debuts and not repeating songs on each of their first four shows, Dead & Company has settled into a deep pocket groove on their summer tour. With a song collection that has surpassed the triple digit milestone, Dead & Company keep fans on their toes by offering up a variety of classic Grateful Dead originals, covers and so much more.The band came out firing at Hartford, CT’s XFINITY Theater last night, opening with “Hell In A Bucket” before bringing out some favorites like the John Mayer led “Cold Rain and Snow” and a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Queen Jane Approximately.” The set also featured Johnny Cash’s “Big River,” and some great tunes like “Row Jimmy,” “Mississippi Half-Step” and “Cumberland Blues.”Set two brought out more Grateful classics, as a pair of favorites “Estimated Prophet” and “Eyes of the World” opened things up. After some blues rock hit the venue with “Deal” and “Viola Lee Blues,” it was Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann who shined during the “Drums” improv, before welcoming the band back to “Space” out. Finally they got back to work, closing out the show with “The Wheel,” “Black Peter,” and “U.S. Blues.” A “Touch Of Grey” encore closed out this fiery show.Full audio can be streamed here:Watch some highlights below.Cold Rain and Snow via Matt FrazierQueen Jane Approximately by Matt FrazierBig River via Matt FrazierRow Jimmy by Matt FrazierEyes Of The World by Matt FrazierCheck out the full setlist below, courtesy of setlist.fm.Additional photos from the show can be viewed below, courtesy of Chad Anderson Photography. Load remaining images
Dead & Company Debuts ‘Dire Wolf’, ‘Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door’ In Alpine Valley Opener [Full Audio/Videos]
The full setlist can be seen below.Edit this setlist | More Dead & Company setlists[Cover photo via Dave DeCrescente] Throughout the off-season, Dead & Company promised fans that they would be introducing new material throughout their summer tour. Now a few weeks into their touring, it’s impressive that the band continues to find new gems to pull out of the rough. Last night was no exception, as the band made their debut at the Alpine Valley Music Theatre in East Troy, WI, playing the famed venue with a passion.After opening with “Cassidy” and treating their fans to classics like “Brown Eyed Women” and “I Need A Miracle,” Dead & Co brought out their first-ever edition of “Dire Wolf.” Guitarist John Mayer handled the song’s lead vocals with ease, as his blues rock persona is a perfect fit for the tune. Watch footage below, courtesy of Sojahsey1.The show was jam-packed with Grateful Dead classics, including “Ramble On Rose,” “Box Of Rain” and “The Music Never Stopped” to close out the first set. More classics came through in the second half, including the opener “Deal,” and “Eyes of the World,” “St. Stephen,” “The Other One,” “Help On The Way > Slipknot! > Franklin’s Tower,” and, of course, “One More Saturday Night.” The band also brought out two Bob Dylan classics in “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall” and the encore, “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door.”Check out video footage of “Eyes Of The World,” courtesy of Sojahsey1, and full audio from WMWV Radio.
A few years ago, Brendan Bayliss of Umphrey’s McGee and Jeff Austin–at the time a member of Yonder Mountain String Band–formed a new musical project called 30db. The project was a great outlet for the two songwriters, even if it only lasted for a short period of time. After unofficially parting ways in 2012, the pair performed a show under the 30db moniker last winter in Chicago. Now, one year later, 30db is back, with a show at Schuba’s, also in Chicago, slated for December 22nd.This is sure to be a special night of music from two of the scene’s best songwriters. For more information and to purchase tickets to the show, click here.
Load remaining images Guitarist Warren Haynes is not only one of the hardest working musicians in the industry, but he’s also one of the kindest and most giving. Last weekend, he hosted the 28th annual Christmas Jam at the US Cellular Center in Asheville, North Carolina. This annual event benefited the Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity, with proceeds going towards constructing energy-efficient homes, as well as purchasing and developing land for Habitat subdivisions. More than $2 million dollars have been raised from this event for the organization, helping 36 families in the process.The marathon event, known for going well into the wee hours, offered pre-parties, which warmed up music lovers all over the city, before the sold out main event began around 6 PM. Asheville Music Hall, One Stop, and Jack of the Wood venues featured music from various artists all day long, with 100% of the proceeds also going towards Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity. Not one single artist made a dime from their involvement, a true testament that the giving spirit is alive and well in the music community. Some locals referred to the weekend as the New Year’s Eve of Asheville, due to the high energy that was swirling around town.Pianist Holly Bowling not only kicked off the festivities with her inspiring musical configurations, but performed between acts throughout the entire evening, ensuring the music truly never stopped. Host, Warren Haynes, made his debut appearance at the jam performing solo with his lone guitar, starting his show off with “The Real Thing.” The venue was attentive, as you could hear a pin drop while he performed.Jamey Johnson and Alison Krauss brought a country flair to the venue as they kicked off their set with “High Cost of Living,” and brought fans to their feet, singing right along with “When You Say Nothing At All.” George Porter Jr., Eric Krasno, Terence Higgins, Branford Marsalis and John Medeski proceeded to blow the roof off with their set, as Marcus King wasted no time in joining the stage and kicking ass with his incredible guitar talent.Porter’s deep growling tones enticed the audience to join in during their set, especially when “Sugaree” made an appearance, which brought heavy hitter Bob Weir to the stage. The cheers from the audience deafened the venue, causing an explosion of intense energy in the building. This extended tune was crammed with jammy goodness, with both Krasno and Porter showing off their goods. “Iko Iko” finished off this hot and heavy set, with Weir staying until the set ended.Michael McDonald took to the stage after a quick sound check and brief intermission. He began with speaking of equality in the nation and peace for all. His set was nothing but magical, and included Audley Freed and Don Was, alongside Higgins and Medeski. Marsalis took to the stage when he broke into “I Keep Forgettin’.” “What A Fool Believes” and “Taking It to the Streets” made sure to keep everyone dancing the night away with these heavy fan favorites. Steve Kimock and Duane Trucks brought the house down as they joined Was and Weir, after Weir performed solo on “Easy to Slip.” Krauss joined on both vocals and fiddle during a simply beautiful rendition of “Peggy-O.” Her fiddle sang across the strings, as her tender vocals created a perfect harmonious balance during the melody. Dry eyes were in short supply throughout the crowd. Haynes, Bowling and Marsalis also joined in mid-set to perform along with several Grateful Dead tunes, including “He’s Gone” and “Ripple.” Weir was on fire and performed with full on energy throughout the night. The venue reacted with gratitude and thankfulness for his appearance the entire evening. Meanwhile, Marsalis added a flair of brass, taking the audience on a wild ride that combined Weir’s flip flop guitar tones, elevating the music into deeper layers of jamming for the audience.The Last Waltz crew took to the stage, and the audience took to their feet. The stage was crammed with musicians, including Haynes, Was, Higgins, McDonald, Medeski, Johnson, and bringing out Mark Mullins and Levee Horns. The whole cast of characters wasted no time as they went right into “Up On Cripple Creek,” once again bringing deafening cheers from fans. Horns were stuffed into “Georgia On My Mind,” including tuba. Bringing out even more musicians, the end of this magical set brought Bob Margolin, who was part of the original Last Waltz, and Smoky Greenwell. “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” finished out this mind-blowing set, which no one wanted to end.After Bowling’s last between-set performance, Gov’t Mule closed out the incredibly long evening of music and magical surprises. Everyone made an appearance on stage, with even more appearances by Rocky Lindsley, Mike Barnes, Jeff Sipe, Paul Riddle, and Tony Coleman. The tune that closed the entire event was “Mountain Jam.” What an event it was.Christmas Jam is a marathon, not a sprint. If you’ve never been, be prepared to get lots of sleep ahead of time. If you’re a repeat attendee, the magic keeps fans coming back again and again. Put this on your list of must see events next year, especially because the proceeds give back to the community. For more information on Christmas Jam, please visit their official website.Words and photos by Sarah Bourque.
LCD Soundsystem have just announced seven nights at the new Brooklyn Steel, starting THIS Friday! Only two months after the venue’s opening, which featured five shows from LCD Soundsystem, the Brooklyn Steel will once again host the electronic rock band on June 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 23, and 24. The band used their initial stage presence to perform a few songs off their upcoming record, which fans will assumably hear more from across these upcoming shows.Frontman James Murphy‘s most recent update states: “we’re done with the record. like, totally done with the music and mixing. just some art stuff to finish, but it’s been mastered already and the lacquers are winging their way to the pressing plant (which is, i think, where they’ll make the mothers and stampers, etc.).” Read the full statement here.LCD Soundsystem has so far shared two songs from the forthcoming new album, “call the police” and “american dream.” Hear them both below:Do not miss LCD Soundsystem for another hometown throwdown. Tickets to the upcoming shows go on sale 6/15 at 10AM EST. All ticketing information can be found on the Brooklyn Steel website.