Photo by Marc Millman


On Monday night, Steve Earle & The Dukes hosted the fourth annual John Henry’s Friends benefit for the The Keswell School, an educational program for children and young adults with autism.

Billed performers included Earle, Warren Haynes and the duo of Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi as well as The Mastersons. And, needless to say, there was plenty of musical cross-pollination at the Town Hall gig.

After opening with Phil Lesh & Friends favorite “The Real Thing” (originally written by Haynes) and Haynes’ solo cut “Ashes and Dust,” the guitarist’s standout moment came when he invited his former Allman Brothers bandmate Trucks onstage for a version of “Old Friend.” Steve Earle, The Dukes and The Mastersons added some instrumentation to a cover of Guy Clark’s “Desperados Waiting for a Train” and the set closed with Haynes, Trucks, Tedeschi, Earle & The Dukes jamming on Garth Brooks’ “Two of a Kind, Workin’ on a Full House” and ABB’s “Soulshine” (both originally written by Haynes).

Later, during Trucks and Tedeschi’s duo set, Haynes joined them for an acoustic take on “Back Where I Started,” with Haynes and Tedeschi sharing vocal duties. The duo closed their set with a pairing of Bob Dylan’s “Don’t Think Twice It’s Alright” and Elmore James’ “The Sky Is Crying,” both featuring The Mastersons and The Dukes.

Following Earle’s own acoustic set, the entire collective of musicians encored with “Midnight Rider” and “Teach Your Children.”