Bob Weir And Wolf Bros continued their debut North American tour in Syracuse on Thursday night in the new band’s ongoing quest to create fresh identities for the Grateful Dead live catalog. Weir, along with drummer Jay Lane and bassist Don Was filled their 18-song performance at the Landmark Theatre on Thursday with plenty of Dead favorites like “Jack Straw”and “Loose Lucy”, in addition to a mix of covers like their spin of Neil Young‘s “Down by the River” to open their two-song encore with help from local 26-year-old harpist Mikaela Davis.
Footage of the band playing the rock song from Young’s 1969 Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere album on Thursday night can be watched below. Viewers can immediately pick up on Davis’ presence on stage, as the notes from her harp clearly flutter throughout the venue atop the band’s rhythm section to heavy audience applause. Davis even takes the lead on vocals as the song’s first verse begins at the 0:35 mark. Weir can be seen and heard stepping up to join Davis during the song’s anthemic chorus, which is followed by a wonderfully rich harp solo adventurous enough for any passionate Dead fan.
The band’s rendition of “Down by the River” wasn’t the audience’s first introduction to Davis last night. The musician from Rochester also joined in to play with the trio at the end of the first set to sit in on covering Jerry Garcia‘s “Bird Song”, and returning in the second half of the show to help play on “Wharf Rat” (also see below) followed by early Dead favorites “China Cat Sunflower” > “I Know You Rider”. She also stayed on stage following the Neil Young cover to close the show with a cover of the Garcia’s beloved folk ballad “Ripple”.
The band also sprinkled in a few other tasteful covers into the night’s set including Bob Dylan‘s “All Along the Watchtower” and The Temptations‘ Standing on Shaky Ground”.
Bob Weir and Wolf Bros – 11/8/18
Bob Weir And Wolf Bros with Mikaela Davis – “Down by the River” [Neil Young Cover]
Bob Weir And Wolf Bros with Mikaela Davis – “Wharf Rat”
Weir and his Wolf Bros comrades continue their fall trek this weekend with a two-night run at the famous Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, New York on Friday and Saturday. Fans should expect the band to possibly continue their tour tradition of welcoming a special guest to join them for at least one of the nights, as they’ve already jammed with artists like Jane’s Addiction’s Perry Farrell, Margo Price and John Oates so far on this tour.
Setlist: Bob Weir and Wolf Bros | Landmark Theatre | Syracuse, New York | 11/8/18
Set One: Jack Straw, Gonesville, Me And My Uncle, Peggy-O, Deep Elem Blues, Althea, Loose Lucy, Bird Song(with Mikaela Davis)
Set Two: Easy To Slip, Two Djin, All Along The Watchtower, The Music Never Stopped > Shakey Ground, Wharf Rat (with Mikaela Davis) > China Cat Sunflower (with Mikaela Davis) > I Know You Rider (with Mikaela Davis)
Encore: Down By The River(with Mikaela Davis), Ripple (with Mikaela Davis)