Yonder Mountain String Band Shares Cover Of “Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo”

Yonder Mountain String Band delved into the archives on Tuesday for a live video of “Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo”. The video comes from the jamgrass outfit’s October 2nd, 2021 performance at Red Hat Amphitheater in Raleigh, NC, headlining the International Bluegrass Music Association (IMBA)’s Bluegrass Live! festival.

The Grateful Dead cover taken from 1973’s Wake of the Flood pits multi-instrumentalist Nick Piccininni on vocals with mandolin in hand. Interpreting the immortal words of Robert Hunter in one of the Dead’s more lyrically-dense songs, he guides the group through the rolling tides of instrumentation. The 7:11 minute telling allows ample opportunities for the group to explore side avenues of improvisation before arriving at the crest of the sonic wave for the “across the Rio Grand-eo, across the lazy river” outro.

Yonder preceded the release of “Mississippi Half-Step” with another clip from Bluegrass Live! on Monday. The extensive 15-minute video sees YMSB stacking high a jam sandwich that begins with the traditional “Raleigh and Spencer”, a well-received cover by the audience of North Carolinians. The quintet then carries the tune through its original “Nowhere Next”, before arriving back in “Raleigh and Spencer” to finish the movement.

Watch pro-shot footage of Yonder Mountain String Band’s cover of the Grateful Dead’s “Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo” as well as a movement of “Raleigh and Spencer” and “Nowhere Next” at Red Hat Amphitheater for Bluegrass Live! in Raleigh, NC. Yonder is currently out on tour, appearing next at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C. on Thursday. For tickets and a full list of tour dates click here.