Michael Cleveland Joins Billy Strings For Entire Louisville Show

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Fiddle player Michael Cleveland joined Billy Strings for the latter’s entire show at Headliners Music Hall in Louisville, Kentucky on Saturday night to close out a three-night run at the venue and wrap up his winter tour. The Grammy-winning fiddler resumed his role with Strings after joining the guitarist for his second set at Headliners the night before.

Billy got things going with the classic “Dust In A Baggie.” Strings and company then got into cover material with Jerry Reed’s “Likes Of Me,” the Grateful Dead’s “Bird Song” and the first of several nods to Kentucky bluegrass legend Bill Monroe with “I Haven’t Seen Mary In Years.” The aptly named “Dos Banjos” saw Strings and banjo player Billy Failing both playing the eponymous instrument. The first set also contained a cover of the Billy Nershi-penned String Cheese Incident song “Black Clouds,” which saw Cleveland unleashing some fierce fiddle reminiscent of the late great Vasser Clements. The solo got a smile and more than a few nods from Billy. The band then closed out the first frame with another Monroe number, “I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky.”

The second set got underway with more Monroe in “Dusty Miller,” and, after Strings’ “Highway Hypnosis from his 2019 album Home, Monroe’s “Foot Print In The Snow.” The Stanley Brothers tune “I Only Exist” came next ahead of Home tracks “Away From The Mire” and “Long Forgotten Dream.” A fitting “Fiddlin’ Around” followed ahead of more Stanley Brothers with “Nobody’s Love Is Like Mine” before the set closer, an extensive “Meet Me At The Creek” from Strings’ debut solo album Tinfoil & Turmoil. Billy, Cleveland and company retook the stage for an encore of Bill Monroe’s “Roll On Buddy, Roll On” to close out the evening and Billy’s winter tour.

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Check out audience-shot video from the show below:

Bird Song Captured by Music City Maven

Dos Banjos Captured by Music City Maven

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Black Clouds Captured by Music City Maven

Highway Hypnosis Captured by Music City Maven

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Away From The Mire Captured by Music City Maven

Meet Me At The Creek Captured by Music City Maven

Roll On Buddy, Roll On Captured byT Shaw’s Progressive Bluegrass

Setlist via Phantasy Tour

Set One: Dust In A Baggie, Likes Of Me, Bird Song, I Haven’t Seen Mary In Years, Tipper, Doin’ Things Right, Dos Banjos[1], Taking Water, Black Clouds, Back To Old Kentucky

Set Two: Dusty Miller, Highway Hypnosis, Footprints In The Snow, I Only Exist, Away From The Mire, Long Forgotten Dream, Fiddling Around, Nobody’s Love Is Like Mine, Meet Me At The Creek

Encore: Roll On Buddy, Roll On

Notes: Whole show with Micahel Cleveland (fiddle)

[1] BS, BF duo

Tour Dates for Billy Strings