While a large portion of the audience lumbered through the slow-moving vaccination check/entry line, Billy Strings and his band hit the stage promptly at the 7:30 start time at Redmond, WA’ Marymoor Park on Saturday. They opened the show with a loving nod to hometown hero, Jimi Hendrix, with a smoking cover of “Love or Confusion” on the 51st anniversary of the guitar god’s passing.

What followed was a blistering set of Strings’ originals and covers such as Flatt & Scruggs’ “Doin’ My Time” and a tasty extra-long hoagie sandwich of The String Cheese Incident‘s “Black Clouds” into The Stanley Brothers’ “Clinch Mountain Backstep”, and back into “Black Clouds”. Another first set treat was the “waltz”, “Mary of the Wild Moor”, which came as a coy name check to the venue, Marymoor Park.

After a short break, Billy was back with another nod to the Northwest with a moving cover of Pearl Jam’s, “Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town”, and later in the set came another NW tear-jerker with Mother Love Bone’s, “Crown of Thorns” that morphed its way into Billy’s own “Love and Regret”. The “Turmoil & Tinfoil” > “Enter The Dragon” >” Turmoil & Tinfoil” sandwich to close the second set had the Gore-Tex clad crowd in hardcore hoe-down mode.

Billy Strings – “Elderly Woman Behind The Counter In A Small Town” (Pearl Jam) — Redmond, WA — 9/18/21

[Video: HippieG253]

Billy Strings – “Little Maggie” (The Stanley Brothers) — Redmond, WA — 9/18/21

[Video: BenJammin’s Concert Channel]

Billy Strings – “Crown Of Thorns” (Mother Love Bone) — Redmond, WA — 9/18/21

[Video: HippieG253]

The first real rain in months arrived in the Seattle area in the 24 hours before the show, and it remained in the forecast. Thankfully, the rain held out for almost the entire show, as Jupiter and Saturn shined in the East and the magnificent waxing gibbous moon rose in glorious form. As the boys took the stage for the encore, the rain started up, and we were treated to another nod to Jimi with a soulful cover of “Hey Joe” that flowed into a mind-melting “Third Stone From the Sun”, a perfect ending to a solid and inspiring show.

Billy Strings is off to Salt Lake City, UT on September 22nd. For tickets and a full list of tour dates click here.

Billy Strings – “Hey Joe” (Jimi Hendrix) — Redmond, WA — 9/18/21

[Video: HippieG253]

Setlist: Billy Strings | Marymoor Park | Redmond, WA | 9/18/21

Set One: Love Or Confusion (Jimi Hendrix) [1], Thirst Mutilator > Running, Doin’ My Time (Jimmie Skinner), On The Line, Mary Of The Wild Moor (Blue Sky Boys) [1], Hollow Heart, Black Clouds (The String Cheese Incident) > Clinch Moutain Backstep (The Stanley Brothers) > Black Clouds, Love Like Me, Highway Hypnosis

Set Two: Elderly Woman Behind The Counter In A Small Town (Pearl Jam) [1], Home Of The Red Fox (Bill Emerson) > Little Maggie (The Stanley Brothers), Crown Of Thorns (Mother Love Bone) > Love And Regret, End Of The Rainbow (Frank Wakefield), Running The Route, I’ll You Remember You, My Love, In My Prayers (Hank Snow), Turmoil And Tinfoil > Enter The Dragon (Lalo Schifrin) > Turmoil And Tinfoil

Encore: Hey Joe, Third Stone From The Sun

[1] FTP