Dead & Company’s Bill Kreutzmann Exits Cincinnati Concert Early

Jay Lane filled in for the Grateful Dead founding drummer.

By Nate Todd Jun 23, 2022 11:17 am PDT

Dead & Company continued their Summer Tour 2022 on Wednesday at Riverbend Music Center in Cincinnati. Drummer Bill Kreutzmann sat out the second set and encore due to a pulled muscle with Jay Lane filling in for the Grateful Dead founding drummer.

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Kreutzmann, guitarists Bob Weir and John Mayer, drummer Mickey Hart, bassist Oteil Burbridge and keyboardist Jeff Chimenti “Let The Good Times Roll” to kick off the first set. Dead & Company debuted the Sam Cooke song in New York City on summer tour last year and it has become a go to opener for the band. The 2022 Cincinnati iteration saw D&C continuing their revolving lead vocals on the tune with Mayer handling verse one, Bobby on two and Jeff Chimenti wrapping up the third.

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Mayer then helmed the traditional “Cold Rain And Snow” and also provided some tasty soloing before Weir took everyone down to New Orleans with the tour debut of “Iko Iko.” The first Grateful Dead original of the evening came in the form of the beloved ballad “Ship Of Fools,” which saw John and Oteil swapping verses. Mayer also led a triumphant solo section with some bluesy riffage.

D&C then went from a “cruel sea” to a “Big River.” Although Johnny Cash penned the song about the Mississippi, which D&C serenaded the night previous in St Louis, the song was certainly apropos at Riverbend Music Center on the banks of another great American waterway, the mighty Ohio. The classic Bobby-led tune counted as the biggest bustout of the evening, last time played on September 13, 2021.

Mayer then led the band through the favorite “Here Comes Sunshine,” with the guitarist adding some scorching blues licks on the funky breakdown. Bobby then stepped back to the mic as the band floated through his “Cassidy” and stretched their legs with some classic Dead minor-key jamming before transitioning smoothly into the final “flight of the seabirds” to close out the first frame.

Read on after The Skinny for the rest of the recap and more.

The Skinny

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The Setlist

Setlist Notes
  • [1] with Jay Lane on drums in place of Bill Kreutzmann

Setlist info via Phantasy Tour.

The Venue

Riverbend Music Center [See upcoming shows]

20,500

3 shows
6/16/2016, 6/04/2018, 9/11/2021

The Music

7 songs

9 songs

16 songs
11 originals / 5 covers

1974

8.38 [Gap chart]

None

Iko Iko, Ship Of Fools, Big River, Looks Like Rain, I Need A Miracle, Black Muddy River

Big River LTP 09/13/2021 (23 Show Gap)

The Grateful Dead - 1, Aoxomoxoa - 1, American Beauty - 1, Wake of the Flood - 1, From the Mars Hotel - 1, Shakedown Street - 2, In The Dark - 1,

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Dead & Company emerged for the second set sans Kreutzmann and with Jay Lane in tow. Billy took to social media in real time to share the news that he’d pulled a muscle at Folsom Field in Boulder and needed to sit out the second set but noted that he’s “not giving up this drum chair anytime soon.” Read his Instagram post below:

Jay Lane, who’s been a trusty stand-in for Billy when he’s needed it over the past few tours, got behind the kit as Mayer rolled off the rocking opening riff to “Deal” to get the second set underway. After leading the band through the card game, John continued to show off his blues repertoire on the lead guitar before pulling on the reins a bit ahead of a slow boil build up with some honky tonk piano touches from Chimenti. Dead & Company then cooled down with Bobby’s stellar tune “Looks Like Rain.” The tour debut featured a characteristically spirited vocal performance from Weir punctuated by Mayer flying high on the fretboard.

The vintage pairing of “St. Stephen” and “The Eleven” followed. Mayer reeled off crunchy, looping lines on his front pickup during a firey jam before the band dropped expertly back into the main “Stephen” riff. Bobby then led the group through the psychedelic “The Eleven,” which boasted some great free for all jamming from the sextet ahead of the very danceable coda where the song’s 11/8 time signature really shines. D&C then headed into “Shakedown Street” to complete a sequence of “St. Stephen” > “The Eleven” > “Shakedown Street,” which they offered to open night one at Shoreline earlier in the tour. “Shakedown” contained an infectiously funky jam with Mayer working the auto-wah.

From there, honorary Rhythm Devils Jay Lane and Oteil Burbridge helped Hart on “Drums” before Mickey took front and center on “Space,” offering his signature Beam sequence. The rest of the band trickled back into to fill out “Space,” out of which emerged the first “I Need A Miracle” of 2022. Weir also helmed his killer interpretation of Reverend Gary Davis’ “Death Don’t Have No Mercy.” The Bobby tunes kept rolling to close the set with “Sugar Magnolia.” The band would return for an encore of another fitting river song, the poignant “Black Muddy River.” Mayer sung the tour debut to bring the evening to a close. Dead & Company heads to Chicago’s storied Wrigley Field on Friday. Livestreams are available via nugs.net.

Watch pro-shot video of the first and second set openers below:

Let The Good Times Roll

Deal

Poster

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