Watch Oteil Burbridge And Friends Mashup Nirvana & Grateful Dead Covers Near Philadelphia

“Friend Of The Lithium Devil” was sung by multi-instrumentalist Jason Crosby at Ardmore Music Hall on Thursday.

By Scott Bernstein Sep 22, 2023 11:10 am PDT

Bassist Oteil Burbridge brought Oteil & Friends‘ current fall tour to the Philadelphia area on Wednesday and Thursday for concerts at Ardmore Music Hall. Last night’s second set began with “Friend Of The Lithium Devil,” a mashup of the Grateful Dead‘s “Friend Of The Devil” and the Nirvana classic “Lithium” helmed by multi-instrumentalist Jason Crosby.

The lineup for Oteil & Friends’ visit to Ardmore found the Dead & Company/The Allman Brothers Band bassist joined by Crosby on keyboards and fiddle, guitarists Duane Betts and Steve Kimock, drummer John Kimock, keyboardist Melvin Seals and vocalist Lamar Williams Jr. Oteil Burbridge is touring in support of Lovely View Of Heaven, an album that was released last Friday featuring nine Jerry Garcia/Robert Hunter ballads.

Jason Crosby has performed “Friend Of The Lithium Devil” with a variety of projects including Eric Krasno & The Terrapin Family Band, Phil Lesh & The Terrapin Family Band, Doobie Decibel System and Jason Crosby & Friends. Crosby handled lead vocals mixing the “FOTD” verses and “Lithium” chorus while vamping of electric piano. He then picked up his fiddle for a solo and plucked the instrument while singing portions of both songs to the delight of the crowd.

Watch “Friend Of The Lithium Devil” video captured by 2nd Rail Productions below:

2nd Rail Productions (See 5 videos)
Oteil & Friends (See 28 videos) , Oteil Burbridge (See 53 videos) , Jason Crosby (See 75 videos) , Steve Kimock (See 154 videos) , Duane Betts (See 23 videos) and John Kimock (See 41 videos)

Melvin Seals fronted a cover of Little Milton’s “That’s What Love Will Make You Do” to get Thursday’s concert under way. Seals was a member of the classic Jerry Garcia Band lineup and the song was a staple of the group’s repertoire. Oteil & Friends also played JGB favorites “My Sisters & Brothers,” “Run For The Roses,” “Positively 4th Street” (Bob Dylan), “Midnight Moonlight” (Peter Rowan) and “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” (Bob Dylan) within the first set as well as the traditional “New River Train” and The Allman Brothers Band’s “Blue Sky.”

Burbridge and his band followed the mashup with traditional folk song “Coming ‘Round The Mountain” and ABB instrumental “Les Brers In A Minor.” Next up in the second set were the Jerry Garcia Band arrangements of Eric Clapton’s “See What Love Can Do” and The Mighty Clouds Of Joy’s “Mighty High.” Oteil then belted out “Stella Blue” before the ensemble coupled The Allman Brothers Band’s “Southbound” and “In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed.” The night concluded with a take on the Grateful Dead’s “Scarlet Begonias.”

Listen to an audience recording of last night’s show taped by Rich Stoler here:

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Setlist (via Rich Stoler)

Set One: That’s What Love Will Make You Do, New River Train, My Sisters & My Brothers, Run For The Roses, Positively 4th Street, Blue Sky > Midnight Moonlight, Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door

Set Two: Friend Of The Lithium Devil, Coming ‘Round The Mountain, Les Brers In A Minor, See What Love Can Do, Mighty High, Stella Blue, Southbound, In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed > Scarlet Begonias

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