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See Dead & Company’s Buoyant ‘Jack Straw’ on ‘Colbert’

John Mayer and former members of Grateful Dead embark on fall tour in November

Dead & Company performed a breezy, unhurried rendition of the Grateful Dead standard “Jack Straw” on The Late Show.

Former Grateful Dead guitarist Bob Weir and noted Grateful Dead superfan John Mayer traded lead vocal duties, playing up the contrast between their voices: Weir sang with a pleasant, laid-back rasp; Mayer countered with a plush croon. Jeff Chimenti sketched the song’s primary melody on his piano and Mayer frequently added pinprick-precise guitar solos.

Dead & Company started their fall tour this week with a pair of shows at Madison Square Garden. They have 13 more concerts scheduled around the U.S. before wrapping up the tour December 8th in Florida.

In an interview with Rolling Stone in June, Mayer said that playing with Dead & Company made him feel like “a pig in shit.” “I’ve never had inclusion before,” he explained. “I always created one-man clubs, and one-man shows are very hard to live inside of and inhabit for 50 years. When I was invited into this tribe … It’s like a basketball team – you are doing your best to help the team win. I’ve never in my life been in that situation, and it’s everything I always wanted.”

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