Back in September of 2016, the Grateful Dead‘s own Bob Weir came to Nashville for an unforgettable week. First, Weir sat in with Phish for the first time in sixteen years, joining the band for the majority of their second set in what can only be described as an instant-classic performance. Next, he and his band performed a stirring set at the Americana Music Awards, at which he was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award. The ceremony took place at the famous Ryman Auditorium, which was the longtime home of the famous and influential Grand Ole Opry Country music radio program.
As such, Weir made sure to pay proper tribute to one of the artists whose career was most associated with the Grand Ole Opry, Merle Haggard. Weir performed “Mama Tried”, a Haggard classic that also stands as one of the best covers in the Grateful Dead extended live catalog. Haggard passed away in April of this year, so this performance served as a touching moment, with Weir paid tribute to one of the artists who influenced him (and so many in the music world) tremendously. Weir’s new album, Blue Mountain, is a true storytellers-album, and he lets his country roots show in a way that connects traditional Country Music and Grateful Dead music under one big musical tent.
See the video of Weir and his band performing Haggard’s “Mama Tried” below, courtesy of Austin City Limits, which will air ACL Presents: Americana Music Festival 2016 on PBS this Saturday, November 19th.