Perpetually stoked late-night TV host/Deadhead neophyte Jimmy Fallon made a surprise appearance on Thursday night at Brooklyn Bowl Nashville, where he joined local Grateful Dead cover band Stolen Faces on vocals for a rendition of “Tennessee Jed”.

Stolen Faces’ Phil stand-in seemed genuinely amused as he introduced their “new buddy, Mr. Jimmy Fallon,” who proceeded to stride onstage in his tie-die crew neck sweatshirt and sunglasses and dole out hugs to the band members.

After riling up the audience (“Come on, Nashville, how you doing?!”), Fallon hammed it up for the Tennessee crowd with an affected southern drawl. Hijinks appeared to be Jimmy’s main objective as he showed off his moves (like a John Belushi Grateful Dead sit-in of old) and even made a (relatively unsuccessful) attempt at a stage dive.

Fallon may or may not have had some trouble on the later lyrics (happens to the best of ’em), but his famous enthusiasm still won out. “This is my favorite verse,” an affably embarrassed Jimmy quipped after whiffing on a chunk of lyrics leading into the Jerry Garcia/Robert Hunter classic’s final stanza. “It just shows that the Grateful Dead were funny, and that’s exactly what’s the point of all this.” Per Relix, Jimmy wound up sticking around to sing along with “They Love Each Other”.

Watch Jimmy Fallon sing “Tennessee Jed” at Brooklyn Bowl Nashville below.

Jimmy Fallon Sings “Tennessee Jed” with Nashville Grateful Dead Cover Band Stolen Faces – 2/17/21

[Video: Relix]

Jimmy Fallon’s love affair with the Grateful Dead is a relatively new chapter for the comedian. With the help of his famous friend and avowed Deadhead Andy Cohen (of Bravo fame), Fallon took a crash course on the music of the Dead ahead of Dead & Company‘s 2019 Halloween shows at Madison Square Garden.

Fallon issued his review of the Dead & Co Halloween experience on the following Monday’s The Tonight Show, during which he showed the audience a photo of him and Andy in full Día de Muertos facepaint with John Mayer backstage at the concert.

“I went… It was unbelievable,” Jimmy began. “I went with my friend, Andy Cohen. He told me to go to the show and [I] was like, ‘I can’t, I’m just gonna be a poseur, I don’t really know all the songs.’ He was like, ‘I’ll give you three songs every week for the next two, three months, and get you ready for this concert—Halloween night, Madison Square Garden.’ And most of them, they played, so I knew almost all the songs. It was totally great, I wore full-on makeup. Cynthia and Jacob did our makeup here, on The Tonight Show. … So it was so fun! I kinda went to this concert and no one knew who I was, [they] couldn’t recognize me. So it was really an interesting concert for me. I loved it, and I gotta say, the band was fantastic. They were just on point that night. John Mayer is just phenomenal, this guy’s unbelievable. They all—I mean, Bob WeirMickey [Hart]… everyone was great.”

Fallon continued, “I will say, the thing that made it great was the fans. And I know people talk about that, but the community that they have, they’re so nice. Sure, they’re probably on something [crowd laughs], but they are so nice. They had no idea it was me, and they were like, ‘What’d you think the next song’s gonna be?’ And I didn’t really know, so I just kept saying, ‘Fire on the Mountain’? And they go [nodding], ‘That’s a good call, that’s a good call, bro! That’s cool, bro, I like that idea! I like what you’re thinkin’, man!’ They were so nice, and dancing, and it was Halloween, so people were, like, dressed up, and it was just… What an experience! I haven’t ever had an experience [like that]. If you get a chance, go see Dead & Company. They were fantastic.”

After thanking the band and the Tonight Show makeup artists, Jimmy Fallon closed by acknowledging Cohen and confirming his newfound fandom: “I wanna thank Andy Cohen for kinda changing my life there. I’m a Deadhead now, I love it.”

He’s apparently been frequenting Dead-adjacent shows ever since. Not long after his first Dead & Co show, Fallon showed up at The Capitol Theatre to proved some antics during a Joe Russo’s Almost Dead show, though his contributions came during a non-Grateful encore of Neil Young, Bruce Springsteen, and The Beatles songs. Jimmy Fallon “getting on the bus” was one of the storylines we highlighted in our annual “Strange Sagas” retrospective in 2019, and we’re glad to see that for Jimmy Fallon, the Grateful Dead love never stopped.