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Lockn’ Festival, Arrington, VA 8/26/18  (Live) Digital

Lockn’ Festival, Arrington, VA 8/26/18 (Live) Digital

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Summary

Given the Lockn’ Festival’s policy of encouraging and facilitating memorable collaborations and guest appearances, it was only fitting that Dead & Company would close out the 2018 edition with a very special guest indeed sitting in for the band’s entire second set – iconic jazz saxophonist Branford Marsalis, who has been a member in good standing of the extended family since his first appearance with the Grateful Dead at the Nassau Coliseum on March 29th, 1990. On that unforgettable night, Branford had not only never having played any of the Dead’s material, but didn’t even meet the band members until he was onstage with them – which didn’t stop him from playing the music as though he was born to it. Branford made several subsequent appearances with the Dead as well as some of its musical successors over the years and is always a welcome presence, as was very much the case at Lockn’.

Even before Branford joins them for the second half, the band sets the table in style, opening things up with a first set including such jam-friendly vehicles as “Playing In The Band” and “Uncle John’s Band” as well as standbys of their more song-oriented side like “Loser,” “Mr. Charlie,” “Tennessee Jed” and “Althea,” before closing out the set with a joyous “Sugar Magnolia.”

With Branford on board, we jump into Set Two with an impeccably funky “Shakedown Street,” before diving into deeper improvisational waters with “Bird Song” (which was Branford’s maiden voyage with the Dead on that memorable evening at Nassau), and then one of the most jazz-adjacent pieces in the repertoire, “Eyes Of The World.” “Terrapin Station” follows, with Branford’s soprano sax weaving a particularly enchanting web on the “Lady With A Fan” sequence. The Drums and Space segment continue the exploratory feel, making for a beautiful transition to a stunning “Morning Dew.” That would suffice as a set closer right there, but the band’s got more up its collective sleeve, as they launch into a “Not Fade Away” that features some especially playful interplay with Branford. A rare triple encore of “Brokedown Palace,” “U.S. Blues” and “Ripple” makes for a special close to the night, and to Lockn’ 2018.

Details

FLAC is High Def 48/24

Track Listing
  1. Playin' In The Band
  2. Uncle John's Band
  3. Loser
  4. Mr. Charlie
  5. Tennessee Jed
  6. Althea
  7. Sugar Magnolia
  8. Shakedown Street
  9. Bird Song
  10. Eyes Of The World
  11. Terrapin Station
  12. Drums
  13. Space
  14. Morning Dew
  15. Not Fade Away
  16. Brokedown Palace
  17. U.S. Blues
  18. Ripple