Photo Credit: Jesse Faatz

On Friday, Billy Strings joined Willie Nelson’s Outlaw Music Festival tour at Ameris Bank Amphitheatre in Alpharetta, Ga. The set included a fitting debut of Widespread Panic’s “Pickin’ Up The Pieces” in the group’s home state. 

The evening performance in the Peach State featured a packed lineup of performers, including the night’s headliner, Nelson, as well as Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, Charley Crockett, Larkin Poe, Particle Kid, and Strings, who promptly took the stage at 6:30 p.m. local time, along with his touring ensemble– Royal Masat, Alex Hargreaves, Jarrod Walker and Billy Failings. 

Strings’ 13-song single set began with “Dust In A Baggie” before “Pyramid Country” and “Away From the Mire.” Next, they worked in a cover of Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs’ geographically-fitting tune “Bringin’ in the Georgia Mail” before following up with “In The Morning Light” and “Heartbeat of America.” 

During the halfway point of the set, Strings played Widespread Panic’s “Pickin’ Up The Pieces,” which saw Walker take charge on the mandolin and the bandleader smash the lyrics. Friday night’s cover was the third Widespread original to be played by Strings and his band as of late, after “Fishing” and “All Time Low.” 

Following “Pickin’ Up The Pieces,” Strings performed “I’ll Be Gone a Long Time” before covering The Stanley Brothers’ “Rank Stranger.” “Highway Hypnosis” landed prior to Eddie Noack’s “Psycho,” which ran into Strings’ original “Hide & Seek,” which featured notes of the Grateful Dead’s “Feel Like A Stranger.” Finally, to cap the impressive display, Strings took on Bill Monroe’s “Uncle Pen” to end his set.

Later in the night, Strings joined Willie Nelson for a blend of “Will the Circle Be Unbroken?” and “I’ll Fly Away,” which also included accompaniment by Isbell, Crockett, and Larkin Poe’s Rebecca and Megan Lovell, creating a memorable moment for all those in attendance. 

See Strings’ complete setlist below. 

Billy Strings 

Ameris Bank Amphitheatre – Alpharetta, Ga. 

Sept. 9, 2022 

Set: Dust In A Baggie, Pyramid Country, Away From The Mire, Bringing In The Georgia Mail, In The Morning Light, Heartbeat of America, Pickin’ Up The Pieces*, Gone A Long Time, Rank Stranger, Highway Hypnosis, Psycho > Hide & Seek^, Uncle Pen


* Debut cover of Widespread Panic 

^ “Feels Like A Stranger” tease 

Setlist via