Wilco rounded out its weekend on Martha’s Vineyard with a set at Beach Road Weekend that featured a guest appearance from Jason Isbell. The singer-songwriter and 400 Unit bandleader joined the Chicago folk-rockers on “California Stars”.
Isbell came to the Lighthouse Stage well prepared for the sit-in. As JamBase notes, he has joined Wilco on the Woody Guthrie-penned track on a number of occasions including Minneapolis’ Basilica Block Party in 2015 and Mountain Jam festival in 2016. After closing down the Black Dog Stage himself, Isbell jetted over to lend his guitarwork to Wilco’s collaboration with Billy Bragg, which appeared on their 1998 joint album, Mermaid Avenue.
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Letting Jeff Tweedy handle the vocals, Isbell locked into an instrumental conversation with Wilco guitarist Nels Cline. After he added some Southern grit to Cline’s shimmering guitarwork, their guitar tones enveloped one another and ultimately built into a roaring climax egged on by drummer Glenn Kotche. By the time the final hook came around, Tweedy had to yell over the chorus of guitars.
Watch Wilco welcome Jason Isbell for “California Stars” at Beach Road Weekend. The sit-in came two days after Tweedy and Cline joined Phil Lesh and Friends for a full-set PHILCO collaboration at the inaugural Sacred Rose in Bridgeview, IL.
Wilco, Jason Isbell – “California Stars” (Woody Guthrie) – 8/28/22
Setlist: Wilco | Beach Road Weekend | Vineyard Haven, MA | 8/28/22
Set: Handshake Drugs, I Am My Mother, Cruel Country, I Am Trying to Break Your Heart, Hints, War on War, If I Ever Was a Child, Via Chicago , Story to Tell, Hummingbird, Bird Without a Tail / Base of My Skull, Jesus, Etc., Impossible Germany, California Stars , Box Full of Letters, Falling Apart (Right Now), Spiders (Kidsmoke)
 w/ “Many Words” coda
 w/ Jason Isbell