Guitarist Jeff Mattson has officially joined Dark Star Orchestra. Mattson has been a steady guest member of the Grateful Dead tribute group since lead guitarist John Kadlecik left the group last fall to play with Furthur. Mattson is best known as the founding member of Zen Tricksters and member of the Donna Jean Godchaux Band. The guitarist also performed in an early incarnation of Phil & Friends.

In a statement the members of Dark Star said, “After months of touring and playing with Jeff, we have decided to offer him the full time gig, which he has gratefully accepted. Jeff has blown us away with his energy, licks, and presence on stage. He is a great guy, an inspiring musician and so much fun to perform with, we cannot wait to get back out there and mix it up with him once again. We are having more fun than ever and are looking forward to seeing you all at the upcoming shows.”

Mattson has already played two nationwide tours with Dark Star. He has played with Dark Star Orchestra keyboardist Rob Barraco, another longtime member of the Tricksters, for over 30 years.