Photo by Dino Perrucci

The Allman Brothers Band welcomed numerous guests during its St. Patrick’s Day performance at New York’s Beacon Theater last night. Near the end of the group’s first set, Steely Dan’s Donald Fagen emerged to sing, play piano and showoff his melodica chops for the Allman Brothers Band’s first known cover of Bob Dylan’s “Down Along The Cove.” Duane Allman recorded a version of the song in 1969 at FAME studios with Berry Oakley for an unfinished solo album (the album also included contributions from Butch Trucks and Jaimoe). The sessions were released in 1970 as part of Johnny Jenkins’ Ton-Ton Macoute!.

Fagen remained onstage as the band closed the set with its first take on the Grateful Dead’s “Shakedown Street,” a song he regularly sings with his solo band and as part of Levon Helm’s ensemble. “Shakedown Street” also featured Lincoln Schleifer on bass. Schleifer is something of a link between all the musicians, having worked with Helm, Fagen and Warren Haynes (he was a member of the Warren Haynes band in the early ‘90s). The set also featured this year’s first versions of “Who to Believe” and “Old Before My Time.”

The group’s second set also showcased numerous guests. Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith, noted Latin music percussionist Bobby Allende and Aerosmith guitarist Brad Whitford all emerged for a cover of Booker T. Jones/William Bell’s “Born Under a Bad Sign.” Whitford—who has sat in with Gov’t Mule a few times over the years—performed the song with Bell at Christmas Jam in 2009 while Allende—a longtime associate of ABB percussionist Marc Quiñones—has joined the Allman Brothers at several Beacon runs. Smith is currently touring with his fusion project and sat in with Levon Helm at a recent Ramble. All three musicians remained onstage for “The Same Thing.”

At the end of the night, Whitford, Schleifer and Meters guitarist Leo Nocentelli all emerged for a “Southbound” encore. The Allman Brothers will return to the Beacon tonight.

Here’s a look at last night’ set via the Allman Brothers Band’s homepage

Thursday, 3/17/11, Beacon Theatre, New York, NY

Set 1:

You Don’t Love Me
Midnight Rider
Who To Believe
Woman Across The River
Old Before My Time
River’s Gonna Rise
Kind Of Bird
Down Along The Cove w/ Donald Fagen
Shakedown Street w/Donald Fagen and Lincoln Schleifer

Set 2
Ain’t Wastin’ Time No More
Statesboro Blues
Born Under A Bad Sign w/Chad Smith, Bobby Allende and Brad Whitford
The Same Thing w/Chad Smith, Bobby Allende and Brad Whitford
No One To Run With>
No One To Run With

Southbound w/ Leo Nocentelli, Lincoln Schleifer and Brad Whitford