To honor a man like Joe Russo, it would take a lot more than one concert or even two. Instead, FANS has organized an all-day, nine-hour webcast event dubbed Defender of the Beat which will celebrate Russo’s far-reaching influence throughout live music with a continuous stream of legendary performances. Set to air on December 18th—Russo’s 44th birthday—the free stream will run from 1—10 p.m. ET.
The jam-packed lineup will feature unforgettable performances from throughout Russo’s bountiful career including many shows at such lauded stages as Brooklyn Bowl, The Capitol Theatre, LOCKN’, and many more. Defender of the Beat will host archival sets from Benevento/Russo Duo, The Black Crowes, Chris Hardford’s Band of Changes, Furthur, and more.
Related: Mike Gordon Sits In With The Benevento Russo Duo In Vermont, On This Day In 2006 [Audio/Videos]
Though Russo has had his hands in a lot of pots over the years in terms of touring acts, what makes Defender of the Beat particularly exciting is the amount of special one-off performances. The stream will air footage of The Last Waltz tribute from The Warfield Theater in 2012; Jam The Vote with DJ Logic, Eric Krasno, George Porter Jr., Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Robert Randolph, and more; Jazz & Colors with Krasno and Phil Lesh; Joe Russo’s Almost Dead with Bob Weir, John Mayer, Oteil Burbridge, and Stuart Bogie; Joe Russo’s Hooteroll? + Plus!; One Night Only with George Porter Jr., John Medeski, Karl Denson, and Warren Haynes; (No*So*No) with Krasno and Mononeon; Phil & Friends with Chris Robinson Brotherhood, Derek Trucks, Krasno, The Infamous Stringdusters, John Kadlecik, Medeski, John Scofield, John Fishman, Jordan Levine, Nels Cline, Page McConnell, and Susan Tedeschi; The Stirrers (Neal Evans, Krasno); and There’s A Reward: A Celebration of the Life & Music of Neal Casal.
A note on the stream’s page reads,
Russo’s prolific career has seen him defend the beat and uphold noble virtues like compassion and loyalty. On his day of birth, in the name of rock ‘n’ roll, we honor him with a full day and night of music from venues likes Brooklyn Bowl, LOCKN’, and The Capitol Theatre. Of course, a birthday party would not be complete without well wishes from some of Joe’s closest friends and collaborators.
The stream will also see special appearances from Russo’s many collaborators who will stop by for a kind word. These guests include Dan Horne, Dave Dreiwitz, Dave Harrington, Krasno, Jackie Greene, Jason Crosby, Jeff Chimenti, Marc Brownstein, Marco Benevento, Peter Shapiro, Scott Metzger, Simon Posford, Tom Hamilton, and many more.
Tune in to the free Defender of the Beat birthday stream for Joe Russo on December 18th beginning at 1 p.m. ET on FANS or via YouTube below:
Defender of the Beat: Joe Russo Birthday Live Stream