In the Eighties and Nineties, the Grateful Dead played a series of Bay Area concerts celebrating the Chinese New Year. Now, Bob Weir and his group Wolf Bros will revive that tradition: On February 12th, Weir and Wolf Bros — Don Was on bass and Jay Lane on drums — will broadcast a full show from Weir’s TRI Studios in celebration of the holiday.
The performance will air at 9 p.m. EST on FANS, and will also feature Jeff Chimenti on keyboards and Greg Leisz on pedal steel.
The performance follows the Wolf Brothers’ livestream on New Year’s Eve when they played a blissful 20-song set including Johnny Cash’s “Big River,” plus the Dead’s “Ripple” and “Touch of Grey.” It was one of the most-watched performances so far on FANS. “Chinese New Year has a storied history with the Grateful Dead so it is an honor to be a part of continuing this tradition,” says Peter Shapiro, the founder of FANS.
Weir and Wolf Bros were supposed to tour in 2020 but canceled their plans as the Covid-19 virus spread. “The health, well-being, and safety of everyone in our live music community continues to be our priority,” the trio said jointly in a statement at the time. “We thank you for your continued understanding, support, and love. We can’t wait to get back on the road performing for all of you as soon as we safely can!”
In 2016, Weir released Blue Mountain, his first solo album of all-original material in more than 30 years. Back then, we asked him what rules he lived by: “Be as in touch with your dreams as you can be,” he said. “My old pal Jerry had a place he used to talk about, a place of peace. He described it as ‘going down to the river …’ After they cremated him, people were wondering what to do with his ashes, because there was nothing in his will about that. I had a dream in which it was revealed that he wanted to go ‘down to the river’ and that river was the Ganges. So that’s where we took him. I take my dreams quite seriously.”