ARU And Sco-Mule Reunions Key Christmas Jam Finale

You can always count on Warren Haynes to put together a musical extravaganza for his annual Christmas Jam in Asheville and he really outdid himself with this weekend’s two-night affair at the U.S. Cellular Center. Haynes thought big for the 25th Christmas Jam, loading the lineup with interesting pairings and reunions. Following an eventful Friday night, there were plenty of treats in store for Saturday’s finale.

[Photo by Ian Rawn]

Trumpeter Craig Sorrells accompanied Haynes for the “Hope She’ll Be Happier” opener, before Warren turned the stage over to jam legends Aquarium Rescue Unit for their first performance together in over two years. ARU loaded the set with classics from their ’90s repertoire and welcomed many guests including Bill Evans and Roosevelt Collier for “Compared To What/Yield Not To Temptation” and Casey Driessen, Collier, Evans, Mike Seal, Dr. Dan Matrazzo, Billy Thornton, Ron Holloway, Haynes and Sorrells for “Space Is The Place.” O.A.R. made their Christmas Jam debut last night, where they covered Led Zeppelin’s “Fool In The Rain” along with the event’s host as part of their set.

Michael Franti was joined by a backing band of Jay Bowman , Ron Holloway, Ron Johnson, Casey Driessen, Jeff Sipe and Ike Stubblefield for most of an eight-song set. Warren, Artimus Pyle and Chris Pyle helped out on “Life Is Better Without You” towards the end of the performance. The evening continued with the promised Gregg Allman & Friends set. The “friends” consisted of Haynes, Audley Freed, Johnson, Sipe and Count M’butu. Gregg worked through a five-song set that was heavy on classics from the Allman Brothers Band repertoire including “Statesboro Blues,” “Dreams” and “One Way Out.” Allman’s ABB band mate Oteil Burbridge relieved Johnson on bass for the final two songs of the set.

Grace Potter and the Nocturnals were the evening’s penultimate performers. Potter and her band delivered an eight-song set that featured a cover of “Gimme Some Lovin’.” The long-awaited Sco-Mule reunion made up the majority of Gov’t Mule’s Christmas Jam-closing performance. Scofield and the Mule played “Hottentot,” “Doin’ It To Death,” “Sco-Mule” and “Kind Of Bird,” before Potter sat in with Warren and his band on “Whisper In Your Soul” and “Gold Dust Woman.” All proceeds from the weekend will benefit Habitat For Humanity.

Check out a full gallery of photos from Ian Rawn:

Here’s the setlist from last night’s event:

Warren Haynes & Craig Sorrells
Hope She’ll Be Happier

Aquarium Rescue Unit
Fixin’ To Die
Elevator To The Moon
Basically Frightened
Compared To What/Yield Not To Temptation with Bill Evans & Roosevelt Collier
Space Is The Place with Casey Driessen, Roosevelt Collier, Bill Evans, Mike Seal, Dr Dan Matrazzo, Billy Thornton, Ron Holloway, Warren Haynes & Craig Sorrells
Right Now with Mike Seal, Casey Driessen, Roosevelt Collier, Bill Evans, Ike Stubblefield, Billy Thornton, Ron Holloway, Craig Sorrells & Mike Barnes

O. A. R. (Of A Revolution)
About Mr. Brown
Dareh Meyod (Pawn Shop)
Black Rock
Fool In The Rain with Warren Haynes
That Was A Crazy Game Of Poker

Michael Franti & Friends -Jay Bowman , Ron Holloway, Ron Johnson, Casey Driessen, Jeff Sipe & Ike Stubblefield
I Got Love For You
I Don’t Wanna Go
Sound Of Sunshine with Mike Barnes
11:59 only Michael Franti & Mike Barnes
Let It Go
Life is Better With You with Artimus Pyle, Chris Pyle & Warren Haynes
Say Hey, I love You
Hey World

Greg Allman & Friends -Warren Haynes, Audley Freed, Ron Johnson, Jeff Sipe & Count M’butu
Statesboro Blues
Just Another Rider with Bill Evans, Ron Holloway, Craig Sorrells & Greg Hollowell
Soulshine with Bill Evans, Ron Holloway, Craig Sorrells & Greg Hollowell
Stormy Monday
Dreams with with Bill Evans & Oteil Burbridge; without Ron Johnson
One Way Out with Oteil Burbridge; without Ron Johnson

Grace Potter & The Nocturnals
Medicine >
The Divide >
Big White Gate
Stop The Bus >
Paris (Ooh La La) >
The Lion The Beast The Beat >
Nothing But The Water (I)
Gimme Some Lovin

Gov’t Mule
Hottentot with John Scofield & Dr. Dan Matrazzo; without Danny Louis
Doing It To Death with John Scofield & Dr. Dan Matrazzo; without Danny Louis
Sco-Mule with John Scofield, Dr. Dan Matrazzo & Ron Holloway
Kind Of Bird with John Scofield & Bill Evans
Whisper In Your Soul with Grace Potter
Gold Dust Woman with Grace Potter