Every year since 2005, Relix has partnered with Del McCoury to present our A Cold Turkey Thanksgiving audio special. Over the years, we’ve offered live cuts, studio favorites and even some unreleased material. (We were proud to debut the bluegrass icon’s collaboration with Preservation Hall Jazz Band a few years back.) And, in recent years, we’ve expanded our scope to present a range of music from Del’s sons and their hard-touring outfit, The Travelin’ McCourys. While the Cold Turkey podcast, which Relix Editor-in-Chief Mike Greenhaus and Deal scribe Benjy Eisen co-hosted from 2005–2009, has mostly morphed into our Live at Relix video series, we continue to work with the McCourys every Thanksgiving.
Today’s A Cold Turkey Thanksgiving features two segments. The first, focusing on Del McCoury Band’s 2019 tour, kicks off with a live version of “The Mountain” recorded at Morrison, CO’s Red Rocks on July 21, when the legendary bluegrass group opened for The String Cheese Incident. From there, the special moves on to the DMB’s recent Get on The Bus West Coast campaign, jumping from a take on “Beauty of My Dreams”—recorded at Portland, OR.’s The Aladdin on November 11, the final night of the tour—to a choice run through “That Ole Train,” captured on November 1 at Berkley, CA.’s Freight and Salvage during the outing’s opening night.
The second segment of the Cold Turkey special hones in on The Travelin’ McCourys’ winter run earlier this year and pays tribute to their close friend Jeff Austin, who passed away this summer. The sequence commences with a cover of the Grateful Dead’s “Franklin’s Tower,” with the mandolin wiz on lead vocals, and “Let Her Go”—off the group’s recent Grammy-winning album—from a Grateful Ball date at Springfield, MO’s Outland. Finally, the episode comes to a close with another Dead cover featuring Austin, “West L.A. Fadeaway,” cut at Cincinnati’s Memorial Hall on March 3.
Del McCoury will celebrate his 80thbirthday with a special show at Port Chester, NY’s Capitol Theatre on Saturday, December 21. Jerry Douglas, Drew Emmitt, Andy Falco, Vince Herman and other special guests will join Del McCoury Band during the concert.