Stay Grassy, San Diego: Bob Weir Welcomes Greensky Members & Tal Wilkenfeld
GSBG's Anders Beck, Paul Hoffman and Michael Bont sat-in on the first three songs of last night's second set.
Bobby Weir and Wolf Bros have loaded California shows on their current fall tour with guest appearances and last night’s concert in San Diego was no exception. Greensky Bluegrass‘ mandolinist Paul Hoffman, dobroist Anders Beck and banjo player Michael Bont sat-in with the band during the second set at Humprey’s By The Bay on Wednesday as did bassist Tal Wilkenfeld.
Hoffman, Beck and Bont were in San Diego preparing to launch GSBG’s fall tour at the same venue tonight. The jamgrass quintet will honor the Grateful Dead with their Halloween concert at The Warfield in San Francisco this Saturday, October 29.
The Greensky trio emerged at the start of last night’s second set to accompany Weir, drummer Jay Lane, bassist Don Was, keyboardist Jeff Chimenti, pedal steel guitarist Barry Sless and harmonica player Matthew Kelly on “Friend Of The Devil” and “Stealin’.” The latter is a traditional song dating back to the 1920s popularized by the Memphis Jug Band that the Grateful Dead played live early in their career. A GD studio version was issued by Scorpio Records in 1966. Last night marked Weir’s first “Stealin'” performance since a RatDog show on March 2, 2014.
Wednesday’s second set continued as The Wolfpack strings and horn section emerged to augment Bob Weir & Wolf Bros along with Beck, Hoffman, Bont and Kelly on an adventurous “Cassidy.” The GSBG members then vacated the stage and Australian musician Tal Wilkenfeld came out on bass and vocals for a brass and string-infused “Estimated Prophet.” Wilkenfeld previously joined Wolf Bros at a series of 2018 concerts. Bob Weir & Wolf Bros along with The Wolfpack went it alone next for a “Goin’ Down The Road Feeling Bad” that gave way to a cover of The Beatles’ “Dear Prudence.”
From there, the ensemble jammed “Terrapin Station” into “So What” and back again. Weir hadn’t performed the Miles Davis classic since the Dead took on the song at Hampton Coliseum back on March 27, 1988. The group ended the frame by concluding the “Not Fade Away” they left unfinished to open the show. Bobby led the core band through “Black Muddy River” for the evening’s encore.
Watch fan-shot footage of the Greensky guys joining Weir & Wolf Bros on “Friend Of The Devil”:
Earlier in the night, the complete troupe of musicians kicked off the concert with the aforementioned unfinished “Not Fade Away.” Weir, Lane, Chimenti, Sless, Kelly and Was then worked through “Big River,” “Little Red Rooster” and “Mission In The Rain.” The Wolfpack returned to add to a take on RatDog era tune “Ashes & Glass” featuring Roy Hamilton’s “Don’t Let Go” within. Last night’s first set came to a close with the “Weather Report Suite”/”Let It Grow” pairing.
Stream official audio of last night’s show below:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f9k9Hf6uAMo
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Setlist (via Bob Weir Instagram)
Set One: Not Fade Away V.1-2 > Big River, Little Red Rooster, Mission In The Rain, Ashes & Glass > Don’t Let Go > Ashes & Glass, Weather Report Suite > Let It Grow
Set Two: Friend Of The Devil*, Stealin’*, Cassidy*, Estimated Prophet**, Goin’ Down The Road Feeling Bad > Dear Prudence, Terrapin Station > So What > Terrapin Station, Not Fade Away V.3
Encore: Black Muddy River
- * w/ Paul Hoffman on mandolin, Anders Beck on dobro and Mike Bont on banjo
- ** w/ Tal Wilkenfeld on bass