Tag Archives: Bob Weir

Yahoo! offers highlight reel from TRI “Move Me Brightly” Garcia tribute ft. Weir, Lesh, Mike Gordon & more

For those that were either uninformed, asleep at the wheel, totally inept at the internet or simply busy doing other things, Yahoo! Music has now released highlights from the beautifully produced and perfectly executed “Move Me Brightly,” the Jerry Garcia tribute that was put on by Y! Music and Bob Weir’s TRI Studios.

The night featured a stellar cast of those that one would expect including most of the living members of the Grateful Dead and those associated with various side projects, but also musicians who were ranged from sort of surprising to “holy shit, really?” folks, and included: Mike Gordon (Phish), Chris Tomson (Vampire Weekend), Craig Finn and Tad Kubler (Hold Steady) and Jim Lauderdale, amongst others. There were some notable absentees, but musically, it made no difference.

Below is a setlist of what can be seen and heard in the highlight reel that has been culled from the four hour set.

To watch and read more about the evening (including a misspelling of Furthur), click here to visit Yahoo!’s (pretty stellar) attempt at being mildly cool and semi-relevant again.  It would be much better if they had included “Bird Song” from the evening, though. But hey, this is some serious progress so nit-picking is probably not the most appropriate thing to do at this point.


Highlight Reel Setlist
(courtesy of Yahoo!)


1. The Wheel > Cumberland Blues – Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Joe Russo, Neal Casal, Jason Abraham Roberts, Jeff Chimenti, Donna Jean Godchaux, Jonathan Graboff

2. Dupree’s Diamond Blues – Cass McCombs, Mike Gordon, Joe Russo, Sam Cohen, Jeff Chimenti, Josh Kaufman, Neal Casal

3. Ship of Fools – Bob Weir, Donna Jean Godchaux, Jeff Chimenti, Neal Casal, Joe Russo, Mike Gordon, Jonathan Graboff

4. Friend of the Devil – Jim Lauderdale, Cass McCombs, Harper Simon

5. Mission in the Rain – Jonathan Wilson, Mike Gordon, Joe Russo, Donna Jean Godchaux, Neal Cassal, Jeff Chimenti

6. Shakedown Street – Bob Weir, Joe Russo, Mark Gordon, Jeff Chimenti, Harper Simon, Chris Tomson, Donna Jean Godchaux, Adam McDougal, Sam Cohen, Josh Kaufman

7. Terrapin Station – Cass McCombs, Donna Jean Godchaux, Mike Gordon, Joe Russo, Jonathan Graboff, Sam Cohen, Josh Kaufman, Jeff Chimenti

8. He’s Gone – Bob Weir, Mike Gordon, Donna Jean Godchaux, Jeff Chimenti, Joe Russo, Sam Cohen, Josh Kaufman, Jonathan Graboff

9. Eyes of the World – Bob Weir, Jim Lauderdale, Mike Gordon, Donna Jean Godchaux, Jeff Chimenti, Joe Russo, Sam Cohen, Josh Kaufman, Jonathan Graboff, Adam McDougal, Harper Simon

10. Scarlet Begonias – Bob Weir, Craig Finn, Donna Jean Godchaux, Joe Russo, Mark Gordon, Josh Kaufman, Sam Cohen, Tad Kubler, Jeff Chimenti, Adam McDougal, Jonathan Graboff

11. Days Between – Bob Weir, Neal Cassal, Jeff Chimenti, Sam Cohen, Josh Kaufman, Mike Gordon, Joe Russo, Jonathan Wilson, Jonathan Graboff

12. Franklin’s Tower – Bob Weir, Jason Abraham Roberts, Donna Jean Godchaux, Joe Russo, Jonathan Wilson, Mike Gordon, Chris Tomson, Josh Kaufman, Sam Cohen, Harper Simon, Neal Casal, Jim Lauderdale, Jonathan Graboff, Adam McDougal, Jeff Chimenti




Bob Weir, 4/28/12

Bob Weir
NYCB Theatre
Westbury, NY
April 28, 2012



Bob Weir’s solo dates have been the subject of significant cancellations over the past year, the Grateful Dead founding member was all Bobby when making a stop at Westbury’s NYCB Theatre.

Breaking away from the dazzling lights, effect pedals and the like, it was Weir stripped down– rare and well received.




I: Truckin > Spoonful > Truckin, My Brother Esau, Dark Hollow, Me and My Uncle > She Belongs to Me, Looks Like Rain > Easy to Slip

II: Corrina, Loose Lucy > He’s Gone > Ashes and Glass > A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall, Weather Report Suite Prelude/Part I > Let It Grow

Encore: One More Saturday Night, Ripple


Click HERE to download an audience recording of this show.


Click the thumbnail(s) to view photos from the show by Vernon Webb

Follow Vernon’s photo journey on Facebook



Sailing Deep with 7 Walkers: An Honest Tune Interview with Bill Kreutzmann & Papa Mali (Video)

When the 7 Walkers came on the scene, it was like a breath of fresh air. Finally, a founding member (Bill Kreutzmann) of one of the most important bands of the century (Grateful Dead), if not all time, was creating new material. Furthermore, he was doing so with lyricist, Robert Hunter, one of the most profound songwriters to ever put pen to paper, but who had released very little material for far too long of a time period.

Putting together an all-star lineup, made up of guitarist and vocalist Papa Mali, multi-instumentalist Matt Hubbard  and bassist Reed Mathis who was replaced by funk legend, George Porter, Jr., due to Mathis’ Tea Leaf Green commitments.

What happened with the addition of Porter was an all new depth of Kreutzmann and Mali’s original Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup vision… “getting even more of each other’s  funk on each other’s Grateful Dead and vice versa.”

While on Jam Cruise 10, David Shehi sat down with Kreutzmann and Mali for a lengthy discussion on many topics, from a new album that is in the works to Grateful Dead vault releases. Most notably though was Kreutzmann’s setting the record straight in regards to his relationship with Bob Weir, Mali’s openness about the importance of Bill in his life, and Kreutzmann’s tearful candor when talking about the the vacancy he felt after the passing of Jerry Garcia and how that has been somewhat filled by Papa Mali and the 7 Walkers.



Sailing Deep:

An Interview with Bill Kreutzmann & Papa Mali

(7 Walkers)




Bob Weir & Scaring the Children to perform free holiday show from TRI Studios

Tune in next Wednesday, December 21 at 6 and 9pm PST (8 & 11pm EST) for a special Psychedelic Christmas present from Bob Weir’s trio “Scaring the Children” and TRI  Studios.

The show will be FREE, but you must sign up to be a member on TRI Studio’s website.


It will also require a promo code.


To watch the show, simply follow these steps.
-Click here
-Click event Psychedelic Christmas
-Click “Buy Now”
-Enter promo code to keep the event FREE: jolly for 6pm merry for 9pm


** Make sure you use these codes or you will be charged **
-Click Checkout
-Login or Sign up
-Go to your purchases to watch event.


Also, TRI will be rebroadcasting last June’s entire Furthur broadcast. Event will be next Friday, December 23rd at 4pm and 7pm PST (6pm and 8pm EST) at www.tristudios.com

This broadcast will be free as well, but no promo codes will be required for this event.




Various Artists : Warren Haynes Presents – The Benefit Concert Vol. 4

Another Christmas, another Christmas Jam (the 23rd!), and another archival release from events past, Warren Haynes Presents: The Benefit Concert Vol. 4. Get ready to get merry – this one’s a doozy.

Recorded during the 2002 installment of Warren Haynes’ annual benefit for Asheville, North Carolina’s Habitat for Humanity, this double-disc release documents an explosive night of rocking performances and inspired collaborations.  Opening with a sparse reading of James Taylor’s “Carolina in My Mind” – a clear nod to the hometown crowd in Asheville – the performances build energy song over song. A brooding “Climb to Safety” by Jerry Joseph and Dave Schools gives way to a twofer from Robert Randolph and the Family Band. But the high point of this first disc comes from moe. and the “Dark Star” jam that gives way to the festive “Mexico.”

The meat of The Benefit Concert Vol. 4 is found on the second disc in Bob Weir and Friends’ uber-funky “Shakedown Street” that segues into “Truckin’” before transforming into “The Other One.” To cap the album, Gov’t Mule’s sprawling delivery of “Sco Mule” – with help from DJ Logic, Dr. Dan Mantrazo, and Mike Barnes – emanates feral power, and the Mule closes out the collection in high style with a cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man” with help from former Skynyrd drummer Artemis Pile, along with Schools, Audley Freed, and Rob Baracco.

Oddly enough, the only downside to the Benefit Concert Vol. 4 is its brevity. At two discs and two-and-a-half hours, the release highlights the featured acts from the 2002 installment, but given the four-plus hour marathon shows for which the Christmas Jam is known, it only whets the appetite. The stellar cherry-picked performances by Bob Weir & Friends and Gov’t Mule, in particular, leave a great deal of music absent from the collection.

The annual Christmas Jam is legendary; year after year Haynes puts together a spirited party for the sold-out crowd, and creates a collaborative Mecca for the performers. While the event only comes but once a year, The Benefit Concert series is a gift that keeps on giving. Vol. 4 is a release that will have a home in this writer’s playlist well beyond the holiday season.

Warren Haynes Presents: The Benefit Concert Vol. 4 is out now on Evil Teen Records.

The Grateful Dead : The Grateful Dead Movie

Perhaps one of the best-known icons of the Grateful Dead, the  dancing skeleton was reworked as Uncle Sam by artist Gary Gutierrez for the opening animation of 1977’s The Grateful Dead Movie, where it dances, jams, and rides a motorcycle through psychedelic  scenery, leading viewers into the live performances at the core of the concert film. Years out of print, The Grateful Dead Movie is back, and the Uncle Sam skeleton’s glorious jig is now even more illuminated, thanks to Blu-Ray technology.

Filmed over a five-night stand in October 1974 at the Winterland Ballroom – and co-directed by frontman Jerry Garcia –  the film documents a high point in Dead lore. It marked the final shows before an extended hiatus, and it also marked the return of drummer Mickey Hart after a three-plus year absence. Take away all of these milestones, though, and what you have is a solid documentary with stellar playing by the band. Choice cuts like “Eyes of the World,” with its cascading breakdowns, and the heart-tugging  “Stella Blue” highlight the performance footage, which are interspersed with film of the crew setting up the Wall of Sound, blissed out audiences reveling during the performances, and often-comical commentary from Deadheads in attendance during the run.

The Blu-Ray release takes The Grateful Dead Movie to another level, though, with remastered audio and restored footage from the original negatives. If that wasn’t enough, a second disc includes 95 more minutes of live footage culled from this run, including meandering, improvisational readings of “The Other One,” which segues into “Spanish Jam” and “Mind Left Body Jam” before concluding, and the classic jam vehicle “Dark Star.”

The Grateful Dead Movie’s return is a reason to celebrate.  It is brighter, clearer, and sounds better than ever, a visual reminder of the magic of the Grateful Dead.

The Grateful Dead Movie is out now on Shout! Factory.

What goes around comes around : moe.down 2011

moe_down2011-17.jpgLabor Day is set aside to reward the hard-toiling members of America’s workforce, but somebody seems to have forgotten to tell the band moe. For 12 years now, they’ve spent Labor Day weekend hosting the giant party known as moe.down to thank to their dedicated fans, the moe.rons.

Held in upstate New York where the band formed and found their over two-decade-old voice, this year marked the second in its current location just outside of Mohawk, NY in the shadows of the Gelston Castle ruins overlooking the valley below that, for the weekend, is filled with eager music fans looking to celebrate the conclusion of the summer season in style, dance and song.

Continue reading What goes around comes around : moe.down 2011

Ratdog and Keller close their tour with a bang in LA

Ratdog/Keller Williams

The Greek Theatre

Los Angeles, California

July 28, 2007


Words by Joy Rosenberg and photos by Keith Berson / keithberson.com  


Los Angeles’ Greek Theatre, a 6,200-capacity, open-air theatre at the base of a steep mountainside in Griffith Park, is one of the first public park conservations in the nation.  Its motto is "Live music under the stars in the heart of Los Angeles," and with almost 80 years of concerts, the crowd at the July 28 Keller Williams/Ratdog show was one of the most congenial ever to take in some of the finest music to echo off its slopes.




Keller Williams took the stage to open the last show of this summer tour, predicting things to come as he sang "Freakiness will hopefully ensue" from among his stockpile of instruments, setting out on his one-man mission to create groove loops that would have everyone dancing in the balmy, late-afternoon heat.

Keller’s joy in performing is so evident that it almost doesn’t matter what he’s playing—although covers of "Stayin’ Alive" and a solo version of "Pancho and Lefty" (made famous as a duet between Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard) were a tasty way to kick off the evening as the crowd slowly filtered in through the gates.

It appeared that Keller’s act would be a short one, until Bob Weir joined him on stage and the two paired their acoustic guitars for intimate campfire versions of "Monkey and the Engineer" and "Cadillac," which featured Keller on the Jew’s harp. 

As if to say the evening would break all the rules, Keller said, "We don’t have time for one more, but we’re going to do it anyway—’cause that’s how it goes!"  With that, they broke into "Dark Hollow," with Keller on mouth trumpet, a rare and appreciated treat for the audience just as the stage lights came on and the sun prepared to set over the hillside.

The almost-full moon shone increasingly brightly as the other members of Ratdog took their places behind their instruments to the cheers of the now-full theatre.  The lineup featured Steve Kimock, who has been standing in for Mark Karan, as the guitarist has been undergoing treatment for cancer

Ratdog’s set began with a signature jam opener that eventually coagulated into the dramatic first chords of "Help on the Way/Slipknot!"  An extended jam in the middle provided the first taste of Kimock’s precise riffing as it deftly locked in with Robin Sylvester’s bass, itself coming through strong from the get-go.  It was evident that this was going to be a night of precise musicianship and tight jamming.

The funk that would eventually comprise the second set was foreshadowed with Kenny Brooks’ deep sax as the band slid into "Easy Answers."  At one point, Weir was down on one knee, wailing on his guitar to the cheers of an enthusiastic audience that gave him rock star applause.  The tempo sped up and the crowd was out of its seats and dancing for "Frankie and Johnny." 

A beautifully-executed triumvirate followed: "Lazy River Road," followed by "Cassidy" and "Bird Song."  These flowed seamlessly into each other and the familiar tunes lifted the audience into a state of bliss, evidenced by cheers and whistles throughout the crowd.  Bobby sang, "Laugh in the sunlight…Fly through the night," just in time for the sun to finally set and the moon to take over. 

Set one ended with "Good Lovin’," and the Greek Theatre, from the first row all the way to the highest bleacher, was up shakin’ it as hard as they could, egged on by Bobby’s repeated shouts of "Who needs it?" that echoed the song’s chorus.

When Ratdog said they would take a short break, they actually meant it!  It wasn’t long before Jay Lane’s ominous, commanding drums and Weir’s sparse chords became "Masters of War," the lyrics still as acerbic and apropos as when Dylan wrote it more than 44 years ago.  This heavy political statement interrupted the party vibe of the evening, but no doubt served to remind the audience to remain conscious of world events even as they enjoy the good times. 

From the same vein came "Black Throated Wind," which featured loud crowd cheers on the advice, "What’s to be found running around?  You carry your pain wherever you go…You ain’t gonna learn what you don’t want to know."

For instant fun injection, just add Keller.  He returned to the stage to lighten the mood and add wacky distortion from his guitar to a slow, thumping bass line that led to a seriously funked-up "Althea."  It culminated in a tight, fast-paced crescendo that bordered on chaotic and had all seven musicians jamming at the top of their games.  Kimock was on fire here, every note effortless, lubricated, and defined.




At the height of the jam, Brooks’ sax laid down the mountains and Jeff Chimenti’s piano coated them with a sprinkling of snow.  All 6,000+ people could be heard singing along, "This place is getting hot!" 

The band used that momentum to segue into a joyous "Scarlet Begonias."  If there was prior doubt that the party was on, it was gone at this point.  Weir could barely be heard over all the attendees singing at the top of their lungs in unison, "Had one of them flashes, I’ve been here before, been here before."  The ecstatic audience howled to the dominant moon as Kimock led the band into a crescendo. 

Keller took the mic, improvising trumpet sounds with his mouth—with the sax picking up the cue—and soon the two "horns" were trading phrases, with Keller leading and Brooks echoing impressively.  The piano followed closely behind, eventually merging the duo back into the melee.

Michael Franti & Spearhead’s guitarist David Shul, in town working on an album, emerged in the middle of it all and added to the sound as Kimock, now wailing, skimmed the top.  Sylvester’s bass held the anchor of the still-funked out jam that had been carried over from "Althea" and with a prominent lick, Kimock signaled the end of the megajam and the band segued into a quieter lull that emerged slowly, to the delight of all, as "Dear Prudence." 

An abrupt but deft chord change switched gears yet again, this time back into a "Cassidy" reprise that threw everyone for a loop.  No one in Los Angeles that night believed they would get through the night without a "One More Saturday Night," and Weir delivered.  Changing some of the lyrics, he addressed the president as "George," and advised him: "break out your boogie shoes!"

After briefly leaving the stage, the band came out for one encore, wrapping up the "Slipknot!" from the first set and seguing to "Franklin’s Tower."  As if giving a farewell wish to the west coast before leaving, Weir sang, "May the four winds blow you safely home." 

In an inspiring moment of camaraderie and family, the entire cast and crew—arms around each others’ shoulders—held up a handmade sign on a long white sheet that read in block lettering, "Good Vibes MK," a wish for Mark Karan’s speedy recovery. 

Ratdog is clearly a tightly-knit family, and the crowd was a part of that, all the way to the last note of the tour.







Reminiscing at 10KLF

10,000 Lakes Festival

Detroit Lakes, Minnesota

July 18-21, 2007


Minnesota is known for many things, with lakes among the most popular.  Celebrating summer with good music has always been the way I like to remember my home state best, so heading back for 10,000 Lakes Festival is always a treat.  

This year marked the fifth 10KLF, with ticket sales at an all-time high.  I attended inaugural festival, so it was fun to come back four years later to see how the event had matured.  It was evident that plenty of progress has been made in developing and fine-tuning the grounds, an integral part of what makes the event special.  Surrounded by mature oak trees, green grass, and water, the temperature generally stays cool, making 10KLF an ideal summer fest respite for bands and fans alike.

This year the weather was warmer, but certainly not hot enough to slow the attendees down.  The festival grounds buzzed with seemingly non-stop activity that flowed through the huge festival field and the five campgrounds surrounding it and into the vending area, which was packed with a plethora of great food and craft vendors.

The four main stages were a good length apart, but not far enough that you get exhausted just thinking about moving to the next show.  But if a fest guest were too tired to walk back to their campground, a golf cart cabbie was readily available to give their dogs a rest.

The line-ups at 10KLF consistently provide something for everyone to enjoy.  I managed to take in 18 bands this year without seeing one mediocre performance; not a single show was even close to lackluster.  

I pulled in at dusk on Wednesday to the bluegrass-meets-rock sounds of Blueground Undergrass.  The first evening was mellow but very uplifting, and as the venue began to fill, it rippled with anticipation.

During the afternoons, the shows were played with plenty of verve under the blue and sunny skies.  Galactic, New Riders of the Purple Sage, Outformation, Everyone Orchestra, Keller Williams, Little Feat, and Toubab Krewe all brought an infectious enthusiasm to the midday settings. Crowds gathered early in front of all stages, and sheer ecstasy and rowdy applause could be found at every turn.  Even by day four, when you would expect partiers to show signs of fest weariness, the crowd’s energy remained surprisingly high.




The schedule for every evening was thoughtfully planned.  If someone truly wanted to see all of the evening bands, it was possible – providing, of course, you had the stamina to get you through it.  There was very little overlap of headliners, so you never really had to choose one over another.  Over nine hours of top notch performances were flowing every night

On Thursday evening Zappa Plays Zappa contributed two and a half hours of Frank’s tunes, played to perfection.  This delightful din, fronted by Frank's son Dweezil was followed by a very rambunctious two and a half hour set from Umphrey’s McGee. The Disco Biscuits finished out the night and provided a sort of pulsating electronic lullaby to those who went back to their camps to rest off the well danced day. 

moe. supplied just the right amount of Friday night spunk to prepare adoring String Cheese Incident fans for an emotional three and a half hour set. The usual celebratory weirdness you expect at a SCI show was present in full-force, and it was interesting to witness, knowing that the end of an era for both band and fans was unfolding right in front of me.

There was a sentimental vibe emanating from the audience, and the band was clearly enjoying the warm, err, fuzzies.  Anyone who wasn’t feeling too sentimental to continue rocking out went on to enjoy a riveting high energy performance by The Tragically Hip, but if pure stings strummed heavily in a foot stomping, front porch manner was more your style, the choice to see MN’s own Trampled by Turtles was also available.  TBT was extraordinary and it was pure pleasure to witness their exuberant fans enjoying the heck out of the show.  


Saturday night was definitely set up to be a grand finale.  Gov’t Mule started the evening off with every bit of force they are capable of.  The wind picked up and blew a refreshing breeze over the rhythmically warmed.  Just when I thought the show couldn’t get any better, Derek Trucks emerged on stage to add his slide on "32-20 Blues."  The band was in a rockin’ good mood and did not hold back as they prepared the crowd to embrace Bob Weir and Ratdog.  

Ratdog kicked off their set with "Help On The Way > Slipknot," and never looked back.  An absolutley unforgettable guest appearance by Warren Haynes on "Big Railroad Blues" closed out the first set, working the audience into a massive dancing frenzy in the process.  The second set saw Weir's playful side surface.  No Minnesota performance by any Grateful Dead member would be complete without a Bob Dylan tune, and "A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall" quickly turned into an enormous feel good sing along.  Ratdog has been on the road with Keller Williams for several weeks, and the one-man band joined his tourmates to close out the second set on "Bird Song," "Cassidy," and "One More Saturday Night." 

A 30 min fireworks display was launched after Ratdog’s last note and revved the audience into gear for a phenomenal midnight set from The Derek Trucks Band. The music sounded fantastic under the starry sky, and the band was in great form, smiles beaming from the stage for the entire show.  

The raw and raunchy funk of Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk was also available during the same midnight time slot to assure that all dancers with even an once of energy left could set their souls afire in front of any active stage.  And if one last set was what a lingering guest needed, a great late night/early Sunday morning set came from The Lee Boys.  Nothing is quite as satisfying as a dose of sacred steel in the wee morning hours to close out a phenomenal weekend.  

I left 10KLF feeling tired, yet rejuvenated all the same.  The mind set of the staff who run the show definitely contributed to the culture of the event, and I didn’t meet a single employee who was not glad to be there or enjoying their job.  If there really is such a thing as “Midwestern nice” the people who put on 10KLF fit the definition.  No details were overlooked at this party, and my, what a party it was!


All photos by Candise Kola



All Good ’07 in review

All Good Music Festival 

Marvin's Mountaintop  

Masontown, West Virginia  

July 13-15, 2007 


In Masontown, West Virginia, the major economic engine is coal mining. 

But in mid-July, thousands of people converge on the nearby Marvin's Mountaintop in the beautiful, rolling Appalachian Mountains to cleanse their souls by basking in the sun, vibes, and music that the All Good Music Festival provides each year. 

This year, the annual catharsis commenced with Thursday performances by British psychedelic trance-jammers The Ozric Tentacles and the Grateful Dead cover band, the Dark Star Orchestra.  The DSO, known for re-creating historic Dead shows in their entirety, transported the festival revelers to De Kalb, Illinois and the Field House at Northern Illinois University as they recreated the Grateful Dead show from October 29, 1977. 

On Friday, Yonder Mountain String Band delivered an energetic set of their Colorado jamgrass.  As always, Yonder was fun to watch as they kept the large crowd going strong, even when a thunderstorm rolled in and dumped heavy rain accompanied by lightning and thunder.  YMSB dipped into their entire catalog, from older tunes like "Bolton Stretch" to offerings from their new album like "Angel." 

A highly anticipated set from the trio, Keller and the Keels (Keller Williams with Larry and Jenny Keel) featured the Tom Petty cover-medley from their album Grass — a mish-mash of "Last Dance with Mary Jane" into "Breakdown" and back into "Last Dance with Mary Jane."  That was followed by an unexpectedly crowd-pleasing Jon Denver cover (!): "Take Me Home, Country Road" with its fitting West Virgina reference. 

Yonder Mountain's Jeff Austin joined the band as they covered his band's "New Horizon."  But the peak of this set was the final two songs when Bob Weir joined the band for smoking renditions of the Grateful Dead's "Loser" and "Dupree's Diamond Blues." 

Lotus was up next on the Magic Hat Stage.  They only had a 45-minute set, but came out on fire.  From the opening "Jump Off" until the closing "Sunrain," the band displayed power and energy.  Jesse Miller's thundering bass and the excellent guitar riffs and percussion were great all night, even though the set was short. 

Bob Weir and Ratdog headlined Friday on the All Good Stage, with Steve Kimock on lead guitar in place of the ailing Mark Karan.  Steve Kimock never fails to impress on guitar, and boy, did this combination work.  Bob's great voice combined with a bunch of classic Grateful Dead songs and Kimock echoing of Jerry Garcia riffs blew the crowd away.  After their starting intro, the band went into a nice "Casey Jones."  

The "real" show started with a very psychedelic "Dark Star" sandwich, Kimock screaming on the guitar.  They then navigated through a series of Dead classics including "Hell In A Bucket," "Me And My Uncle," and a sick "Tennessee Jed." 

Keller Williams joined Ratdog for a while, giving Weir a rest, and when Bob came back out and Keller departed, Ratdog went into a great rendition of the Beatles' "Come Together."  This long but excellent sandwich closed with the reprise of "Dark Star." 




As soon as the music stopped, the Benevento/Russo Duo started playing on the adjacent Magic Hat stage, only to be interrupted by Rat Dog saying "not so fast, we have one more."  This was an awkward moment for the fest but the "Touch of Grey" was worth it.  

Some seemed a little upset that Ratdog was perceived to be "breaking into someone else's already short time slot."  However, Benevento and Russo played very well despite the miscommunication, and were the talk of the crowd the next day as being the new find of the weekend. 

Friday ended with the late-night set from Sound Tribe Sector 9.  They played their trance-y brand of music well into the early morning and kept the crowd dancing into the wee hours. 

Saturday started off with some great reggae from SOJA and groove- rock from Assembly Of Dust

Perpetual Groove followed on the All Good Stage, though the daylight didn't exactly serve a band accustomed to light-show-enhanced late night sets. However, this was the band's first show in West Virginia, and it was one to remember.  P-Groove started with a great version of "A Day the Way," followed by the classic guitar-driven "Robot Waltz."  They played the new "Under Lock and Key", "Save for One" from their latest album Live Love Die, and ended the short set with "Out Here."  P-Groove put on a decent performance, but, perhaps because of the early slot, never really got into their groove and showed little deep jamming.    

Next up on the All Good Stage was Grace Potter & The Nocturnals.  It was good to see a band fronted by a female musician/vocalist and they brought out a large crowd.  Potter played both piano and guitar and led the band through a theatrical high-energy performance.  A highlight was the crowd-pleasing "Nothing But The Water" parts 1 and 2, where everyone in the band playing the drums in the middle of the tune.  More than one person walked away from that show comparing Potter to Janis Joplin, and nobody was disagreeing. 

Southern rockers the Drive-By Truckers mixed things up a bit following Grace Potter, providing the contrast that makes festivals like All Good great.  They brought a change of pace, delivering some high energy rock and roll fueled by Jack Daniels. Shifting gears again, Les Claypool and his band were up next, and showcased the bassist's quirky style, amplified by Mike Dillion's great percussion and Skerik's crazy facial expressions.

New Monsoon brought some San Francisco style to the Magic Hat Stage, albeit for a short but sweet 45 minute set.  The departure of the percussionists has forced New Monsoon to evolve— gone is the Indian tabla and Latin percussion and more prevalent is high energy rock and roll with screaming guitars and occasional banjo.  Lead guitarist Jeff Miller stood out as they ran through "Bridge of the Gods," the bluegrass-tinged "Romp," and closed with the fest-favorite "Traveling Gypsies." Michael Franti & Spearhead perform a high energy blend of modern day reggae, hip-hop, and funk that's just perfect for outdoor festivals.  If anyone can get the crowd to into the performance, it's Michael Franti; when he says jump, thousands of people do and when he says light up your lighter, thousands of points of light are seen across the crowd.  An often-repetitious setlist not withstanding, Franti is a top-notch performer.  Highlights were "East to the West," "Time to Go Home" (with a video intro of President Bush speaking the lyrics) and "Light Up Ya Lighter" with everyone doing just that. 

Immediately following was one of the better sets of the festival, courtesy of Tea Leaf Green.  They came out punching hard with "Franz Hanzerbeak," then tore it up with the lyrical sensation "Garden" trilogy and ended with a fantastic "If It Wasn't For The Money."  This performance was extremely energetic with great sound, and the energy from both band and crowd was awesome.    

Saturday's main event up on the All Good Stage was moe.  The Buffalo, New York act came right out of the gate blazing, starting with a killer "Rebubula" sandwich and into a "32 Things," "Spine of a Dog" and back into "Rebubula," making their way into a awesome "Plane Crash," and ultimately back into "Rebubula."  A nice "Akimbo" closed the set.  Their "Crab Eyes" encore was amazing, with featuring the sizzling dual guitars from Chuck Garvey and Al Schnier.  A camera strategically placed in Jim Loughlin's percussion kit gave the audience a front-row seat through the drum heads to the underside of his hands.  

The next couple hours….well into the early morning… provided one of the highlights of this year's fest – the Late Night All-Star Jam hosted by moe.  moe. started things off with fan favorite "Meat," followed by some hardcore Beat Box from The Bridge.  "Woodstock" with Reid Genauer of AOD was great.  P-Groove returned for a great Brock rap with a Kayne West "We Don't Care" which passed into a heavy hitting "Sex In The 70's" from Tea Leaf Green. 

The highlight of this all star jam was probably a superb rendition of Neil Young's classic "Cortez The Killer" from the talented vocalist Grace Potter.  moe. came back out to finish with a reprise of "Meat" and a "Godzilla" encore.  The set was perfect way to end a Saturday night at a great festival.

On Sunday, Soulive performed their set as the skies darkened and thunderstorms began pounding during their first song—a great version of "Steppin." The music was stopped for about 15 minutes for safety reasons and fear of lightning strikes.  But once the rain stopped, they returned to the stage for about another 45 minutes of great jazz- rock.  Eric Krasno is one of the best guitar players out there today and he delivered several power-packed solos.  Toussaint joined the band on vocals for several new songs.  They closed out with the classics "Jesus Children of America" and "Feel Like Makin' Love."  The crowd wanted more but apparently they couldn't stay as they had a plane to catch.  

The festival closed with just the third show of Leftover Salmon's brief reunion tour.   While the band had been hiatus for several years, it was clear they hadn't lost a thing, putting on one of the best sets of the festival.  The band walked onstage with a "Howdy West Virginia," and when they sang the lyrics "And the West Virginia waters went down, down, down" the final downpour of the weekend showered the crowd.  Luckily, the rain held up until the set was almost complete.


Click on for the photo galleries – photos by Brad Kuntz{mospagebreak}