To cap off their induction into the Austin City Limits Hall of Fame this past October, Wilco invited a jaw-dropping group of eclectic friends and guests for an ensemble performance of “California Stars.”
Everyone from Alejandro Escovedo, Margo Price, Rosanne Cash, and Lenny Kaye to Japanese Breakfast, Bill Callahan, Sheila E., Terry Allen, and Alex Ruiz joined Jeff Tweedy and the group. Nels Cline and Jason Isbell and legendary pedal steel guitarist Lloyd Maines provide solos throughout the song, while Cash, Escovedo and Tweedy trade verses. (Isbell previously joined Wilco for a performance of “California Stars” in 2016.)
Much like John Prine used to do with his song “Paradise,” Wilco often brings out guests and their opening acts to collaborate on the Woody Guthrie-penned song — a highlight of Wilco and Billy Bragg’s 1998 album Mermaid Avenue. But this collective was among the most star-studded.
Along with Wilco, the new ACL Hall of Fame class included Lucinda Williams and Alejandro Escovedo. Isbell did the honors of inducting Williams, while Margo Price joined her for a blistering take on “Changed the Locks.”
Austin City Limits 7th Annual Hall of Fame Honors airs Saturday at 9 p.m. ET on PBS. A special 90-minute episode streams online beginning Sunday at 10 a.m. ET.