Audio | Nels Cline Guests With Phil Lesh & Friends

Phil Lesh granted our wish of performing Dead songs with Wilco guitarist Nels Cline over the past two nights at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, NY. Cline sat in with Phil Lesh & Friends for the second sets and encores on Thursday and Friday nights. Both sets and encores featuring Nels only contained material from the Grateful Dead's live repertoire.

Lesh and Cline were joined by guitarists John Kadlecik and John Scofield as well as keyboardist John Medeski, percussionist Jordan Levine and drummer Joe Russo for Nels' time on stage. All three guitarists brought completely different approaches to the Dead's music with Kadlecik utilizing his eerie Jerry-like tone, Nels providing an experimental edge (only urged on by Medeski) and Scofield laying down plenty of jazz and blues-tinged licks. The trio's guitar work meshed well and there was plenty of improvisation both within most of the tunes and connecting the songs.

Official recordings of both shows are available via and are highly recommended. The first audience recording of Cline collaborating with Phil & Friends has surfaced thanks to taper Jon Pasternak. Jon's recording of Thursday night's show can be downloaded here. We've shared streaming audio of "Dark Star (V1)", "Scarlet Begonias" (our personal favorite of the night) and "St. Stephen" to give a taste of the Lesh/Scofield/Cline/Russo/Medeski/Levine/Kadlecik collaboration:

Here's the setlists from both shows via Philzone:


Set One (w/ Ross James): The Golden Road (To Unlimited Devotion) jk > Pride of Cucamonga pl > New Minglewood Blues rj > Pride of Cucamonga pl, Ramble On Rose jk, Californian Skies rj > Here Comes Sunshine jk > Box of Rain pl

Set Two (w/ Nels Cline & Jordan Levine): Jam > China Cat Sunflower jk > Mason's Children pl > Dark Star pl > Scarlet Begonias jk > St. Stephen all > Reuben and Cerise jk > Dark Star pl > Morning Dew jk > Fire on the Mountain jk

Cody's Story

Encore: Liberty jk


Set One (w/ Ross James): Brown Eyed Women, Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodleoo, Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall, New Speedway Boogie, Wharf Rat, Samson & Delilah, Turn On Your Lovelight

Set Two (w/ Nels Cline & Jordan Levine): Jam > Cumberland Blues, Cold Rain & Snow, Viola Lee Blues > Eyes Of The World > Jam > The Wheel > So Many Road > Help On the Way > Slipknot! > Franklin's Tower

Encore: Ripple

Phil Lesh and Friends return to Rumsey Playfield in NYC's Central Park this afternoon to conclude a four-show swing through the New York Metro Area.

[Published on: 5/31/14]

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