Words & Photos by Rod Snyder

Phil Lesh and the Terrapin Family Band are out on a limited run of shows on the East Coast. They started in Washington D.C. on October 25th and will finish up at the Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, NY on Halloween. The Family Band includes Phil’s son Grahame Lesh – sharing lead guitar duties with Ross James – Nikki Bluhm on vocals, New Jersey native Robert Randolph on the pedal steel guitar, and rounding out the sextet, Alex Koford on drums and Jason Crosby on keys.

At the BB&T Pavilion in Camden, the air was filled with a potpourri that can only be associated with The Dead. Though the stage was not decked out in Halloween decor, some of the patrons came dressed for the part. Glowing, alien balloons bounced through the air, while the band played and the occasional fan on LSD would sit down next to you and start rambling about some deep stuff.

The band played a nice mix of mostly, early Grateful Dead tunes and covers from other bands. The second set would feature The Preservation Hall Jazz Band – after all, doesn’t everything sound better with some brass mixed into it?

One of the highlights for me was the jam at the end of Shakedown Street. Randolph & The Jazz Band traded licks, each outdoing the other. Halfway through the second set, Phil and his family left the stage and the PHJB did a few of their own tunes, before Phil and Co. came back for more. Preservation Hall left the stage at this point and the band played a few more older tunes, before ending the show after midnight.

Despite being 77 years young, Phil Lesh shows now sign of slowing down. Having his son join the band, along with some of the best musicians out there, helps for sure.

Set 1:
Tennessee Jed
Sweet Jane
After Midnight
Dire Wolf
China cat sunflower
Born cross eyed

Set 2:
Shakedown Street
Minglewood blues
New speedway boogie
Casey Jones
Preservation Hall Jazz Band (3 songs)
Unbroken chain
The Wheel
let it grow

Morning dew


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