In October 2017, Mempho Music Festival celebrated its inaugural year with the ultimate festival-closing set, comprised of a group of world-class musicians, dubbed the Mempho All-Stars. The late-night super jam was dedicated to three fallen Southern-rock greats who passed away earlier in the year: Allman Brothers Band founding members Gregg Allman and Butch Trucks, and celebrated “granddaddy of the jam band scene”, Col. Bruce Hampton.

Led by decorated guitarist Eric Krasno (Soulive, Lettuce), the rotating cast of musicians included bassist Oteil Burbridge (Dead & Company, Allman Brothers Band), guitarist Steve Kimock (RatDog, Phil Lesh & Friends), harmonica player/vocalist John Popper (Blues Traveler, Frogwings), steel guitarist Robert Randolph (Robert Randolph & The Family Band), drummer/percussionist Jeff Sipe (Aquarium Rescue Unit), drummer/percussionist Wally Ingram (Timbuk 3), guitarist Papa Mali (7 Walkers), DJ Logic, banjo/vocalist Rev. Jeff Mosier (Aquarium Rescue Unit, Blueground Undergrass), guitarist Eric McFadden (P-Funk Allstars, Stockholm Syndrome, Anders Osborne), vocalist Leslie Mendelson, keyboardist Peter Levin (Gregg Allman Band), keyboardist JoJo Hermann (Widespread Panic), vocalist Lamar Williams Jr. (Les Brers), bassist Tad Kinchla (Blues Traveler), and bassist MonoNeon.

The setlist featured staple numbers from the Allman Brothers Band, Col. Bruce Hampton, and Gregg Allman, as well as classic covers by Al Green and Otis Redding and, of course, a set-closing rendition of “Turn On Your Lovelight”, the cosmic curtain call from Col. Bruce’s stranger-than-fiction sendoff. The 2+ hour celebration was the perfect way to close the festival, and today, you can listen to the full show audio, mixed and mastered by the legendary Terry Manning (Stax/Ardent), whose resumé includes work with Led Zeppelin, Al Green, Otis Redding, Joe Cocker, Lenny Kravitz, Widespread Panic, and many more.

The “Mempho All-Stars” late-night super jam was produced in benefit of Mempho Music Festival’s philanthropic program “Learn to Rock,” which aims to build bridges throughout the Memphis community by educating students about the city’s rich musical history. As part of the program’s outreach, Learn to Rock—sponsored by Orion Federal Credit Union—provided hundreds of free tickets to Shelby County Schools high school students, staff, and family members, as well as the Soulsville Foundation/Stax Academy and the Memphis Music Initiative.

Mempho Music Festival, a two-day music, food, and camping experience, will return to Shelby Farms Park in Memphis, TN on October 6 & 7, 2018. Head to the website for more information, and stay tuned for more announcements!