On Friday, October 6, 2017, the Mempho Music Festival kicked off its inaugural festivities at Shelby Farms Park in Memphis, TN. When the festival shut down on Friday night, a supergroup of musicians dubbed the “Mempho All-Stars” headed over to the local Minglewood Hall for an off-site, late-night performance in celebration of the Grateful Dead. 

The “Mempho All-Stars Play Dead” was supercharged by Oteil Burbridge (Dead & Company, Allman Brothers Band, ARU), Steve Kimock (RatDog, Phil Lesh & Friends), Robert RandolphEric Krasno (Soulive/Lettuce), Brandon “Taz” NiederauerJeff Sipe (Aquarium Rescue Unit), Wally Ingram (Bob Weir & Phil Lesh Duo, Timbuk 3, Stockholm Syndrome, David Lindley, Sheryl Crow), Ike StubblefieldPeter Levin (Gregg Allman Band), Rev. Jeff Mosier (Aquarium Rescue Unit, Blueground Undergrass), Papa Mali (7 Walkers), Eric McFadden (P-Funk Allstars, Anders Osborne), DJ LogicLeslie MendelsonLamar Williams Jr. (Les Brers), and MonoNeon (Prince, Ghost-Note).

The setlist was appropriately selected by Steve Kimock, who led the rotating cast of characters through Grateful Dead classics and covers, opening the show with Charles Johnson-penned Jerry Garcia Band favorite “My Sisters & Brothers (Promise Land)” with Leslie Mendelson on lead vocals. Oteil Burbridge took vocals next for “Deep Elem Blues” and an unforgettable “Althea” before Eric Krasno and Leslie Mendelson stepped into the spotlight for a “That’s What Love Will Make You Do” duet. Robert Randolph then delivered an ecstatic “Tennessee Jed” on his distinctive pedal steel guitar before the band took off with an energetic “New Minglewood Blues” with Papa Mali and Eric McFadden on guitars and vocals. “New Minglewood Blues” segued into a monstrous “I Know You Rider” featuring then-fourteen-year-old guitar prodigy Brandon “Taz” Niederauer and Rev. Jeff Mosier on mandolin.

From there, guitarist/vocalist Eric McFadden played the role of Elvis Presley–Memphis’ King of Rock and Roll–for an appropriate “All Shook Up”. DJ Logic, Eric Krasno, and more then joined the stage again for a psychedelic version of “Shakedown Street” before the final big jam of the night. A nod to another local superstar, Al Green‘s “Take Me To The River” came next with Leslie Mendelson on vocals and jammed straight into an Eric McFadden-led “Not Fade Away” with the full band. To close the evening, Rev. Jeff Mosier led a beautiful “Black Muddy River”.

You can now listen to the full show audio, mixed and mastered by the legendary Terry Manning of Stax/Ardent Studios fame, below:

A similar iteration of the “Mempho All-Stars” performed Mempho’s Saturday late-night party on October 7, 2017 at the festival grounds. The Super Jam honored the fallen southern rock greats who passed away earlier this year, founding members of the Allman Brothers Band Gregg Allman and Butch Trucks, and Col. Bruce Hampton. You can listen to the full audio of that show here.

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!

Check out the setlist and gallery below, courtesy of photographer John Huba.

Setlist: Mempho All-Stars Play Dead | Minglewood Hall | Memphis, TN | 10/6/17

My Sisters & Brothers (Promise Land) ( Leslie Mendelson, Lamar Williams Jr.), Deep Elem Blues (Oteil Burbridge, Leslie Mendelson, Rev. Jeff Mosier), Althea (Oteil Burbridge), That’s What Love Will Make You Do (Eric Krasno, Leslie Mendelson), Tennessee Jed (Robert Randolph, Leslie Mendelson), New Minglewood Blues (Papa Mali, Eric McFadden) > I Know You Rider (Taz, Rev. Jeff Mosier), All Shook Up (Eric McFadden), Shakedown STreet (DJ Logic, Eric Krasno, Leslie Mendelson), Black Muddy River (Rev. Jeff Mosier)