Greensky Bluegrass Busts Out Jason Isbell & The Band Covers And Welcomes Billy Strings In Jim Thorpe

By Scott Bernstein Feb 1, 2019 7:04 am PST

Greensky Bluegrass returned to Penn’s Peak in Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania on Thursday night for a show filled with rarities. Billy Strings kicked off the action with his band before joining GSBG towards the end of the evening.

The five-piece opened their first of two sets in Jim Thorpe with a near 20-minute “Leap Year” that wound up as the improvisational highlight of the evening. Next up was a cover of Jason Isbell’s “Elephant” that marked GSBG’s first performance of the tune since February 26, 2015. A tribute to The Band came soon after as a take on Steppin’ In It’s “The Ghost Of Richard Manuel” was followed by “The Shape I’m In.” The group put the focus on material from All For Money to end the first set, including “Cathedral Eyes,” “Collateral Damage” and “All For Money.”

Greensky began the final set of the night with All For Money’s “Courage Of The Road” featuring the recently released album’s “It’s Not Mine Anymore” in the middle. Later in the frame, the five-piece worked Eric Brace’s “My Sally” within their own “Tarpology.” Billy Strings then emerged for the inspired song sequence of Greensky’s “While Waiting” and Billy’s “While I’m Waiting Here.” The now six-piece ensemble brought the set to a close with a cover of The Band’s “The Weight.” GSBG last covered “The Weight” way back on November 26, 2016. For the encore, Greensky went at it alone on “What Happened To Jim?” in a play on the venue’s location of Jim Thorpe and “New Rize Hill.

Full Show Audio (Taped by Keith Litzenberger)

Billy Strings

Greensky Bluegrass

Setlists (via Phantasy Tour)

Billy Strings

Set One: Nellie Kane, Dust In A Baggie, Pyramid Country> Black Clouds, Ten Degrees & Getting Colder> Turmoil & Tinfoil, On The Line> Train 45

Greensky Bluegrass

Set One: Leap Year, Elephant, Better Off, Ghost of Richard Manual> Shape I’m In, Cathedral Eyes, Clinch Mountain Backstep, Collateral Damage, All for Money

Set Two: Courage for the Road> It’s Not Mine Anymore> Courage for the Road, Steam Powered Aeroplane, Wish I Didn’t Know, Tarpology> My Sally> Tarpology, While Waiting1> While I’m Waiting Here2,1, The Weight1

Encore: What Happened to Jim?, New Rize Hill

1- w/ Billy Strings (guitar, vocals), 2- First time played

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