Umphrey’s McGee Celebrates 25th Anniversary With JHa, Rarities, David Crosby Tribute & More

The band played two special shows at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, New York.

By Andy Kahn Jan 23, 2023 7:47 am PST

On Saturday, January 21, 2023, Umphrey’s McGee took the stage at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, New York for the band’s 2,644th known public performance. The concert, the second of two straight at The Cap, took place exactly 25 years to the day after the first Umphrey’s McGee show, which was held in South Bend, Indiana at the much smaller (and since closed) Bridget McGuire’s Filling Station.

Frequent UM collaborator, saxophonist/vocalist Jennifer Hartswick, was part of the festivities on Saturday, which also saw the band play a couple of older, rarely played originals. Friday’s concert at The Cap featured an acoustic tribute to David Crosby in the form of a debut Crosby, Stills & Nash cover.

25 Years Of Umphrey's McGee

“Bridgeless” opened the first set on Saturday and was left unfinished until the evening’s encore. The rest of the set was a pendulum swing between older originals, “13 Days” and “White Man’s Moccasins” and newer repertoire additions, “Escape Goat” and “Unevolved,” the latter closing the set with its second setlist appearance after its debut last November.

Set two started in a similar older/newer volley between the staple “Wappy Sprayberry” and “Pure Saturation,” which like “Escape Goat” appeared on UM’s 2022 studio album, Asking For A Friend. Next came a pairing of classic Umphrey’s McGee originals “Dear Lord” which made its live debut on January 29, 1998, and had not been seen in a setlist since a November 2021 show in South Bend, followed by “The Other Side Of Things” which was first played in April 1998 but has only been performed five times since 2000.

Guitarist Jake Cinninger joined percussionist Andy Farag for a percussive jam with drummer Kris Myers that emerged out of “TOSOT.” UM then delivered a standalone “Puppet String” ahead of Cinninger taking an extensive solo to tee up another old-school staple, “Divisions.” Hartswick was brought out for the remainder of the set as Cinninger and guitarist Brendan Bayliss went acoustic for “Bullhead City” accompanied by JHa on vocals.

Instrumental original “1000 Places to See Before You Die” was played for just the 11th time and featured Harstwick adding trumpet. The set ended with Hartswick reprising her role from last summer at Red Rocks, once again joining the band for a second performance of Queen and David Bowie’s “Under Pressure.”


00:00:00
Sean Roche (See 73 videos)
Umphrey’s McGee (See 791 videos) and Jennifer Hartswick (See 73 videos)

00:00:00
Sean Roche (See 73 videos)
Umphrey’s McGee (See 791 videos) and Jennifer Hartswick (See 73 videos)

00:00:00
Sean Roche (See 73 videos)
Umphrey’s McGee (See 791 videos) and Jennifer Hartswick (See 73 videos)

Prior to the encore, The Capitol Theatre’s Peter Shapiro and radio personality Gary Dell’Abate of the Howard Stern Show presented the band with a cake and led the audience in singing “Happy Birthday To You.” After the ceremonial start to the encore, UM dialed up “Den” ahead of a transition into the aforementioned return to finish “Bridgeless.”

Friday’s encore at The Cap began with Cinninger and Bayliss on acoustic guitars accompanied by keyboardist Joel Cummins on backing vocals for the band’s debut cover of Crosby, Stills & Nash’s “Helplessly Hoping.” The cover was performed in honor of David Crosby who died last week at age 81. The first night’s second set began with a 30-minute sequence consisting of “Front Porch” into “Resolution” back into “Front Porch.” The improvisation-heavy set also featured a nearly 10-minute “2nd Self” and 17-minute “Higgins” closer.


00:00:00
Sean Roche (See 73 videos)
Umphrey’s McGee (See 791 videos)

Friday, January 20 Audio (Taped by Steven Weld)

Setlists (via All Things Umphrey’s)

Saturday, January 21

Set One: Bridgeless > 13 Days, Escape Goat-> White Man’s Moccasins > Unevolved

Set Two: Wappy Sprayberry > Pure Saturation > Dear Lord > The Other Side of Things > Drums[1], Puppet String, Jam[2] > Divisions, Bullhead City[3], 1000 Places to See Before You Die[4], Under Pressure[5]

Encore: Den > Bridgeless

Notes:

  • [1] with Jake on percussion
  • [2] just Jake
  • [3] with Jennifer Hartswick on vocals, and Brendan and Jake on acoustics
  • [4] with Jennifer Hartswick on trumpet
  • [5] with Jennifer Hartswick on vocals
  • Before Den, venue owner Pete Shapiro and radio personality Gary Dell’Abate presented the band with a cake and led the crowd in singing “Happy Birthday” for the band

  • Friday, January 20

    Set One: Small Strides, Conduit > Day Nurse[1], FF-> Mail Package[2], It’s Not Your Fault > JaJunk[3]

    Set Two: Front Porch > Resolution > Front Porch, The Linear > 2nd Self, Higgins

    Encore: Helplessly Hoping[4], The Weight Around[5] > The Floor

    Notes:

  • [1] with Workin’ Day and Night (Michael Jackson) teases
  • [2] with Miss Tinkle’s Overture tease
  • [3] with Top Gun Anthem (Harold Faltermeyer) tease
  • [4] debut, Crosby, Stills, & Nash; just Brendan and Jake on acoustics and vocals, along with Joel on vocals, played in remembrance of David Crosby
  • [5] with Brendan on acoustic
  • Closing Time (Semisonic) quote from Brendan before Helplessly Hoping
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