On Sunday, June 28th, over 50 artists and tens of thousands of fans came together for Justice Comes Alive, a one-day, virtual festival harnessing the power of music to bring about collective change in response to racial inequality. The donation-based streaming event generated $55,000 and counting in funds for the participating artists, who remain out of work as the pandemic continues, as well as a number of social justice-oriented causes via PLUS1 For Black Lives Fund.

The 12-hour live-stream marathon featured new contributions by an array of amazing artists from around the world including Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh and the Terrapin Family Band, who performed a remote rendition of the Dead’s Jerry Garcia– and Robert Hunter-penned protest anthem, “New Speedway Boogie”. The band—which featured TFB/Midnight North members Grahame Lesh (guitar/vocals), Elliott Peck (vocals) and Nathan Graham (drums) alongside Phil, keyboardist Jason Crosby, and guitarist/vocalist Ross James—performed in split-screen style from different locations—aside from Phil and Grahame, who gave their performances from the same scenic rooftop.

While the song was initially written in 1970 in response to the violence at Altamont, it proved an eerily appropriate selection for this event, which was spurred by the ongoing racial injustice that persists in our country 50 years later.

As the Ross James told Live For Live Music about the performance, “One of my favorite things about the songs of the Grateful Dead is how they manage to evolve and take on new meanings based on what’s happening on a personal or societal level. This tune is a perfect example of that. One way or another, this darkness has got to give.”

Watch Phil Lesh & The Terrapin Family Band perform “New Speedway Boogie” for Justice Comes Alive below. If you enjoyed the performance and have the means, consider making a donation to Plus1 For Black Lives Fund via www.JusticeComesAlive.com.

Phil Lesh & The Terrapin Family Band – “New Speedway Boogie” (Grateful Dead) – Justice Comes Alive

Presented by Live For Live Music in partnership with PLUS1 and Nugs.TV, Justice Comes Alive was conceived as a way to harness the power of music to bring about collective change in response to racial inequality. All funds raised from Justice Comes Alive will be split evenly between the artists on the bill and the PLUS1 For Black Lives Fund, which was developed to address and continue the fight against anti-Black racism and violence in the U.S.

Directly supporting organizations like Equal Justice InitiativeImpact Justice, and The Bail Project, the PLUS1 For Black Lives Fund focuses on empowering Black communities, movement building, keeping people out of the criminal justice system while dismantling it more broadly, and a collective, international narrative change toward the equitable treatment of Black people. 30% of the PLUS1 for Black Lives Fund is also committed to small grants for Black and Indigenous-led grassroots efforts combating racism. For more information on Justice Comes Alive, head here.