Dark Star Orchestra completed the first half of their April Fool’s New Years run at The Paramount in Huntington, NY on Thursday, March 31st with two sets of Grateful Dead classics.
The band was originally scheduled to play a four-night New Years run in New York, with two shows on December 29th-30th at The Paramount followed by two shows at The Palace Theatre in Albany, NY on December 31st and January 1st, but the run was postponed after several members of the band’s touring party tested positive for COVID-19. The December 29th-30th shows in Huntington were rescheduled for March 30th-31st, and the three-set show planned for New Years Eve in Albany was rescheduled for April 1st (April Fools’ Day), along with the January 1st New Years Day show, which was rescheduled for April 2nd.
Thursday’s show opened with a cover of the Grateful Dead’s cover of “Why Don’t We Do It In The Road” by The Beatles, followed by Dead staples “Jack Straw” and “Ramble On Rose”. DSO then busted out “Keep On Growing” by Derek and the Dominos, which the Dead played only four times, before the Bob Weir classic, “Black-Throated Wind”. They wrapped up the first set with more Dead-adjacent covers, including “Big Railroad Blues” by Cannon’s Jug Stompers, “Little Red Rooster” by Willie Dixon, and “Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues” by Bob Dylan, with “China Cat Sunflower” and “I Know You Rider” to conclude.
As usual, DSO got into more improvisation in the second set, using Dead originals as their launch pad. The set opened with the odd-timed “Estimated Prophet”, “Eyes of the World”, and “Saint of Circumstance”, followed by “Rubin and Cherise” (a Jerry Garcia Band song, technically). The band then got extra far out during “Drums/Space”, before returning to Earth to play The Beatles’ “Hey Jude”. They wrapped up set two with “Uncle John’s Band”, “Stella Blue”, and “Truckin'”, and tagged the show with an encore featuring “Piece of My Heart” (by Erma Franklin and popularized by Big Brother and the Holding Company with Janis Joplin on vocals).
Dark Star Orchestra’s April Fool’s New Years run will conclude on Saturday, April 2nd at The Palace Theatre in Albany, NY. The band has an upcoming appearance at Skull & Roses Festival in Ventura, CA on April 8th and tour dates at the Sherman Theater in Stroudsburg, PA; The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, NY; The Caverns in Pelham, TN; and more.
DSO’s Dark Star Jubilee will take place on May 27th-29th at Legend Valley in Thornville, OH, and the band will embark on a Europe ’72 50th Anniversary Tour in September that will include shows in the UK, France, Germany, and Italy.
View photos from Dark Star Orchestra’s April Fool’s New Years show at The Paramount in Huntington, NY on March 31st below, and for a complete list of upcoming tour dates and to purchase tickets, head here.