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Published: 2009/10/26

Stealth RatDog

Above: RatDog at New York’s Grand Ballroom last week. Photo by Howie Schnee

Bob Weir & RatDog brought their six-night, five-show New York residency to close Saturday with a performance at the Beacon Theatre. Partway through the group’s second set, the vocal group The Persuasions—who recorded an album of Dead songs a few years ago—took the stage with RatDog for an a capella “It Must Have Been the Roses” and an electric “He’s Gone.” The Persuasions later returned during RatDog’s encore without the band for a completely a capella reworking of “Ripple.” The show then came to a close with a version of “U.S Blues” that found Hippie Bill waving a Yankees flag on stage in honor of the World Series Playoff games.

Late Friday night, the members of RatDog also played a surprise show at New York’s 150-person club Triad after their Beacon gig. The show was originally billed as Mark Karan and Friends and the RatDog guitarist opened the night with a version of “Good Morning Little Schoolgirl.” Weir, RatDog saxophonist Kenny Brooks, RatDog drummer Jay Lane, RatDog bassist Robin Sylvester, Citizen Cope keyboardist John Ginty, keyboardist Dred Scott and saxophonists Doug Yates and George Garzone all emerged for the song and remained onstage for “ Wang Dang Doodle,” “Smokestack Lightnin‘” and “Spoonful.” Though Weir left the stage, the collaborations continued late into the night. At one point singer Emory Joseph—who also recently released an album of Jerry Garcia/Robert Hunter covers—emerged for a take on “What Did I Do Wrong” and the night climaxed with “Sugaree” and “And We Bid You Goodnight.”

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