Billy Strings & Micah Nelson Cover ‘Blue Skies’ Near Boston

Watch Billy and Micah team up for the Irving Berlin classic.

By Nate Todd Sep 17, 2022 11:56 am PDT

Billy Strings continued his run on Willie Nelson’s traveling Outlaw Music Festival on Friday. The guitarist and his band welcomed Micah Nelson for a cover of the Irving Berlin classic “Blue Skies” at the Xfinity Center in Mansfield, Massachusetts.

Billy Strings — fresh off his Artist Of The Year Americana Awards win — teamed with Micah Nelson following Billy’s sit-in with Willie at the previous Outlaw Fest stop in Hartford, Connecticut. To kick off their set in Mansfield, Strings and company — bassist Royal Masat, mandolinist Jarrod Walker, banjoist Billy Failing and fiddler Alex Hargreaves — delivered four songs from Billy’s 2021 album Renewal, beginning with “The Fire On My Tongue” and “Secrets” ahead of a paring of “Fire Line” and “Running The Route.”

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The lone song, “Enough To Leave,” from Strings’ Grammy-winning 2019 album Home followed. Strings then linked up John Hartford’s “All Fall Down” and the traditional fiddle tune “Cattle In The Cain.” Next, a two song excursion on “While I’m Waiting Here” and a raucous “Meet Me At The Creek” clocked in at around 20 minutes.

Billy then remarked, “Me and Micah had a really good hang last night, played a lot of Tony Hawk Pro Skater…really good conversation that led us to thinking maybe we should jam a song together today.” Micah then added guitar and sang on the Irving Berlin standard “Blue Skies.”

Micah’s dad Willie Nelson included a cover of “Blue Skies” on his 1978 album Stardust. Billy has covered the song once before during an April 2022 concert in San Diego with Royal Masat on lead vocals. Masat held down the bassline for the Outlaw Fest edition. After Micah manned the first verse and chrous, he and Billy teamed up on some tasty guitar harmonies to kick off a round of solos from Walker and Hargreaves before Strings and Nelson teamed up on vocal harmonies for the chorus ahead of the song’s conclusion — capping off the set.

Watch fan-shot video of Billy Strings and Micah Nelson on “Blue Skies” below and listen to full-show audio via G-Man:


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Amy Karibian (See 34 videos)
Billy Strings (See 726 videos) and Micah Nelson (See 5 videos)

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Setlist (via BillyBase)

Set: The Fire On My Tongue Secrets Fire Line Running The Route Enough To Leave All Fall Down Cattle In The Cain While I’m Waiting Here Meet Me At The Creek Blue Skies[1]

Notes:

[1] With Micah Nelson on lead vocals

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