Joe Russo’s Almost Dead Shares Official Recording Of 2019 New Orleans Run Finale

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Joe Russo’s Almost Dead‘s 101st installment of the Taper’s Thursday live recordings series features the band’s April 27, 2019 performance at Mardi Gras World Ballroom in New Orleans. The concert was the second of two JRAD shows held during Jazz Fest at the Mardi Gras World Ballroom and is highlighted by an unusual rendition of “Viola Lee Blues.”

The Grateful Dead tribute act started the first set with a jam that gave way to an expansive “Good Lovin’.” Next up was a wild “St. Stephen” that spanned over 20 minutes and segued into the “China Cat Sunflower”/”I Know You Rider” pairing. JRAD’s second set on April 27 also began with a jam and this one led into an adventurous “Here Comes Sunshine.” The quintet then focused on a bluesy bit of improvisation before unveiling their slow and throbbing take on “Viola Lee Blues.”

“Throwing Stones” is a standout in the Almost Dead repertoire as the band uses the Bobby tune as a springboard to dynamic jam spaces. In New Orleans, keyboardist Marco Benevento led the exploration before guitarists Scott Metzger and Tom Hamilton let it rip. The set continued with a “Reuben & Cerise” featuring a Marco solo and a swampy “Feel Like A Stranger.” JRAD closed out the frame with a gorgeous “Stella Blue” sung by Hamilton. For the encore, the five-piece dusted off their cover of Spacehog’s “In The Meantime” and said farewell with “One More Saturday Night.”

Listen to Joe Russo’s Almost Dead’s April 27, 2019 performance in New Orleans tanks to Peter Costello and Eric McRoberts:

Setlist (Compiled by Pete Costello)

Set One: Jam > Good Lovin’, St. Stephen@ > China Cat Sunflower > I Know You Rider

Set Two: Jam > Here Comes Sunshine# > Blues Jam$ > Viola Lee Blues% > Throwing Stones^, Reuben & Cerise > Feel Like A Stranger, Stella Blue&

Encore: In The Meantime*, One More Saturday Night

  • @ – With a China Cat Tease (TH), Unfinished
  • # – With a Playin’ Tease (TH)
  • $ – With a Tennessee Jed Tease (SM)
  • % – Different musical arrangement than normal
  • ^ – With a China Cat Tease (MB)
  • & – With an “Epic” (Faith No More) Tease (MB)
  • * – Spacehog Cover, second time played by Almost Dead. Not played since 2018-07-19 Celebrate Brooklyn Festival, Prospect Park, Brooklyn, NY, a gap of 35 shows; With a “Love Supreme” (John Coltrane) Tease (TH)
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    Joe Russo’s Almost Dead