The String Cheese Incident made a trip over the Rocky Mountains to the East Coast for a run of headlining concerts over the weekend. The four-show stretch across four states saw the debut of a new song, a nine-year bust-out of “Las Vegas”, and more.

After starting the weekend early on Thursday in Charlottesville, VA where Cheese offered up the live debut of its latest single “Roll Around the Sun” and welcomed dobro player Jay Starling of Leftover Salmon, the band hit the Jersey Shore on Friday for a show in Atlantic City. The talk of the East Coast run has been Michael Kang‘s new custom five-string electric mandolin from Walker Guitars and the slight but noticeable change in tone that has come with it.

The new weapon of choice served Kang well on Friday at the Hard Rock Live at the Estess Arena in A.C. Amid classics like “Rhythm of the Road”, “Black and White”, and Rusty Wier‘s “Don’t it Make You Wann Dance”, Cheese went old-school with “Cottonmouth”. Ahead of the song, Bill Nershi shouted out its co-author Christina Callicott who was in the audience that night. In the second set, String Cheese Incident performed its song for the Atlantic City of the West, “Las Vegas”, for the first time since Valentine’s Day 2015. After closing the second set with a “Desert Dawn” teaming with “Get Lucky” (Daft Punk) teases, the night came to an end with a regrettably brief “Bollymunster” as the band jutted up against the venue’s curfew.

Moving up the East Coast, The String Cheese Incident traveled to Boston on Saturday for a show at MGM Music Hall at Fenway. The Colorado-bred band wasn’t kidding when it opened Saturday’s show with “So Far From Home”, igniting a set highlighted by an extensive “It Is What It Is” jam that found its way into “Sirens” ahead of set-closer “Colorado Bluebird Sky”.

The band came perilously close to delivering a repeat-free four-night trip along the East Coast, but couldn’t resist doubling down on plugging its latest single, with the second-ever performance of “Roll Around the Sun” arriving on Saturday in Boston. Beyond that, Cheese kept things fresh in the second set with huge showings of “Rivertrance”, “The Big Reveal”, and “Just One Story” for a jam-heavy second set. Saturday’s encore perfectly encapsulated the multitudes contained within The String Cheese Incident, as the folk-inspired “Eventually” gave way to the all-out EDM dance party of “Hi-Ho No Show” to put a bow on Saturday.

The String Cheese Incident — MGM Music Hall At Fenway — Boston, MA — 5/18/24 — Full Audio

[Audio: Mike D (VT)]

There’s an adage about being diligent to always attend concerts on the day after Saturday that has been so monotonously repeated that it has lost all meaning and become a farce unto itself. That said, Sunday Cheese is an entirely different animal. Closing out the weekend at the State Theatre in Portland, ME, the band still had plenty of tricks left including dusting off Pure Prairie League‘s “Pickin’ to Beat the Devil” for the first time since May 27th, 2022. There were more surprises in the first set, as Bill Nershi introduced another new song, jokingly saying “We don’t even know how to play it. Mike’s just gonna make it up as we go.” Either The String Cheese Incident is the greatest group of improvisers ever assembled or the band actually did know how to play the song, gliding along Kang’s breezy feel-good number “We’ll Be Talkin’ ‘Bout Tonight”.

The String Cheese Incident — “Can’t Wait Another Day” [Pro-Shot] — 5/19/24

The back half of the show featured a couple relevant covers, starting with The Police‘s “Walking on the Moon”. Cheese debuted the Reggatta de Blanc cover at the same Portland venue on Halloween night in 2000. The band has performed the cover only a handful of times in the nearly quarter century since, most recently at its Suwannee Hulaween festival as part of its “Full Moon Family Reunion” Shebang set. Finally, the night wrapped with a fitting nod to late Allman Brothers Band guitarist Dickey Betts during the encore as the band delivered its second-ever take on the Allman’s “Revival”—a cover also debuted at last year’s Hulaween Shebang.

The String Cheese Incident — “Revival” (Allman Brothers Band) [Pro-Shot] — 5/19/24

Check out some photos of Cheese’s Saturday and Sunday shows courtesy of photographer David Gray and fan-shot videos from throughout the weekend. The band’s tour continues on Tuesday in Pittsburgh ahead of festival appearances at Solshine: A Music & Arts Reverie and CaveJam. For tickets and a full list of tour dates visit Cheese’s website.

The String Cheese Incident — “This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody)” (Talking Heads) — 5/18/24

[Video: Rob Tatro]

The String Cheese Incident — “Sirens” — 5/18/24

[Video: Rob Tatro]

The String Cheese Incident — “Pickin’ To Beat The Devil” (Pure Prairie League) — 5/19/24

[Video: K T]

View Videos

Setlist: The String Cheese Incident | Hard Rock Live At The Estess Arena | Atlantic City, NJ | 5/17/24

Set One: Close Your Eyes, Rhythm of the Road > Don’t It Make You Wanna Dance (Rusty Wier), Black and White, Cottonmouth [1], The Remington Rider, Birdland (Weather Report), Water > Colliding

Set Two: Sweet Spot, Cedar Laurels > One Step Closer > Let’s Go Outside, Las Vegas [2], ‘Round the Wheel > Desert Dawn

Encore: Bollymunster

[1] Played for song’s co-author Christina Callicott who was in the audience
[2] LTP 2/14/15

Setlist: The String Cheese Incident | MGM Music Hall At Fenway | Boston, MA | 5/18/24

Set One: So Far From Home, Born on the Wrong Planet, I Will Follow You, Bhangra Saanj, It Is What It Is > Sirens, Colorado Bluebird Sky

Set Two: Roll Around the Sun, Rivertrance, Ain’t I Been Good To You, The Big Reveal, This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody) (Talking Heads) > Just One Story, Jellyfish, Rosie

Encore: Eventually, Hi-Ho No Show

Setlist: The String Cheese Incident | State Theatre | Portland, ME | 5/19/24

Set One: Can’t Wait Another Day, Pickin’ to Beat the Devil (Pure Prairie League), Lend Me a Hand, We’ll Be Talkin’ ‘Bout Tonight [1], Little Hands > Dudley’s Kitchen, Best Feeling > Texas

Set Two: Bumpin’ Reel, Walking On the Moon (The Police), Miss Brown’s Teahouse, Way That It Goes, Into the Blue, Joyful Sound > All We Got

Encore: Revival (Allman Brothers Band)

[1] Debut