Joe Russo’s Almost Dead Dusts Off Rarities & Jams On Living Colour At Brooklyn Bowl On This Date In 2018

By Nate Todd Mar 8, 2021 4:01 pm PST

Joe Russo’s Almost Dead kicked off a three-night run at New York City’s Brooklyn Bowl on this date in 2018. The March 8 concert saw the Grateful Dead tribute act bust out a number of rarities and jam on Living Colour’s “Cult Of Personality.”

The 2018 Brooklyn Bowl opener took place on the anniversary of Grateful Dead co-founding member Ron “Pigpen” McKernan’s death. JRAD — drummer Joe Russo, guitarists Scott Metzger and Tom Hamilton, keyboardist Marco Benevento and bassist Dave Dreiwitz — got the show underway with a trio of songs from the Pigpen era beginning with the McKernan-sung “Alligator” and continuing with a well-jammed “St. Stephen” into the Dead rarity “Dupree’s Diamond Blues,” which JRAD dusted off for the first time since their second-ever show on December 27, 2013 at the Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, New York. The band then tackled the tricky Blues For Allah instrumental “King’s Solomon’s Marbles” which segued into just the second-ever performance of the Waylon Jennings popularized “Only Daddy That’ll Walk The Line,” which the band unveiled at Brooklyn Bowl in early 2015. The first frame wrapped with “Touch Of Grey.”


The second set began with a rowdy “The Golden Road (To Unlimited Devotion),” an early original the Dead only performed a handful of times, which led into one of the highlights of the evening, “Jack Straw.” Next, JRAD transitioned into “Hell In A Bucket” before pairing “Scarlet Begonias” with “I Know You Rider.” Tom Hamilton then led the band through the poignant “Stella Blue,” which included a tease of “Winter War Games” from Hamilton’s band American Babies, to close out the second set. Almost Dead would reemerge for a three-song encore that kicked off with Bob Dylan’s “Tonight, I’ll Be Staying Here With You,” which made its first JRAD appearance of 2018. The band then jammed a bit on a Bo Diddley beat that led into “Man Smart, Woman Smarter,” for International Women’s Day. The Bo Diddley beat provided a natural segue into “Not Fade Away,” which saw the band jamming on Living Colour’s “Cult Of Personality” before returning to “NFA” to bring the evening to a close.

Listen to the entire show below via Peter Costello and Eric McRoberts:



Set One: Alligator > St Stephen > Dupree’s Diamond Blues, King Solomon’s Marbles > Only Daddy That’ll Walk The Line > Touch of Grey

Set Two: The Golden Road (To Unlimited Devotion) > Jack Straw, Hell In A Bucket > Scarlet Begonias > I Know You Rider, Stella Blue

Encore: Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You > Man Smart, Woman Smarter > Not Fade Away

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