Joel Cummins Covers Bruce Hornsby’s ‘The Way It Is’ & Dusts Off ‘Baby Honey Sugar Darlin’
Umphrey’s McGee keyboardist Joel Cummins included a cover of “The Way It Is” by Bruce Hornsby and UM rarity “Baby Honey Sugar Darlin'” within his Live From The Living Room livestream performance on Wednesday. Cummins also worked in classical and jazz numbers, Umphrey’s originals and a Grateful Dead cover into last night’s set.
The Illinois native performed from his living room in Santa Monica, California on Wednesday. Proceeds from the livestream were split between the Coalition For African-Americans In The Performing Arts and Team Umphrey’s.
Joel kicked off last night’s Live From The Living Room in typical fashion by working an improvisation into the first in a series of classical pieces. On Wednesday, the improv led into Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata,” which was followed by Debussy’s “Pour Le Piano Prelude” and “Pour Le Piano Sarabande.” A cover of Dave Grusin’s “Memphis Stomp” gave way to the Cummins original “D’yer Ma’ker D’yer Semba.” It was then classic rock time as Joel worked the Grateful Dead’s “Scarlet Begonias” into “In My Life” by The Beatles.
“Ringo” opened a portion of the set devoted to Umphrey’s McGee songs. Cummins fit “Stinko’s Ascension” within “Ringo” and then surprised fans with a rendition of “Baby Sugar Honey Darlin’.” Umphrey’s only played “Baby Sugar Honey Darlin'” three times since 2002 with the most recent version a take from October 18, 2018 at The Canopy Club in Urbana, Illinois.
Joel performed the title track from UM’s 2009 studio album, Mantis, next before welcoming his daughter for a quick cameo. Cummins said farewell with “The Way It Is” and the coda of Phish’s “Lizards.” Bruce Hornsby & The Range originally released “The Way It Is” as the title track to their debut studio album in 1986.
Watch Joel’s set below:
Set: Improv > Moonlight Sonata, Pour Le Piano Prelude, Pour Le Piano Sarabande, Memphis Stomp > D’yer Mak’er Semba, Scarlet Begonias > In My Life, Ringo > Stinko’s Ascension > Ringo, Baby Sugar Honey Darlin’ > Mantis, The Way It Is > Lizards Coda