Earlier this week, Dave Matthews participated in two dates on the traveling Lampedusa: Concerts for Refugees benefit event. Produced by Jesuit Refugee Service/USA, in partnership with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, Lampedusa’s goal is to “raise awareness and money to support expanded educational opportunities for displaced people through JRS’s Global Education Initiative. Funds raised from the tour help refugees to heal, learn, and thrive.”
On Tuesday, Mathews performed near his home at Seattle’s Moore Theatre on a bill that also included Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle and Patty Griffin. As a nod to Tom Petty, at the outset of the night the musicians took the stage together for the original that felt most inline with the benefit’s core mission, “Refugee.” Later in the night, Matthews and Harris shared the stage during a take on “My Antonia,” a Harris original they recorded for the Americana singer’s 2000 LP _ Red Dirt Girl_. Then, at the end of the multi-act bill, the entire ensemble returned once again for a collaborative take on “Pilgrim,” an Earle song that originally appeared on his 1999 record with The Del McCoury Band, The Mountain.
The next night Lampedusa made its way to Portland, OR’s Aladdin Theater for another all-star night. Brandi Carlile joined the previous evening’s performers and the concert once again opened with a sing-along take on “Refugee” featuring the night’s entertainers. Matthews and Harris offered a second take on “My Antonia” too and, at the end of the show, all five musicians returned for a cover that has been part of many of their catalogs for years, John Prine’s “Angel From Montgomery.”
Lampedusa will continue at San Francisco’s Hardly Strictly Bluegrass on Sunday featuring Earle, Griffin, Harris, Buddy Miller and Lucinda Williams. Matthews’ full setlists are available over in our Box Scores section.