Photo Credit: Marc Millman

Last night, Feb. 21, Bobby Weir and Wolf Bros brought their current tour to Orpheum Theatre in Memphis, Tenn. After three nights of music flanked by conductor Steven Reineke and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra this past weekend, the ensemble emerged on Tuesday evening ready to pay homage to one of the city’s most celebrated musical assets: Elvis Presley. The concert also boasted a sit-in by the cosmic country overlord, Daniel Donato, who joined the billed band on a plethora of tunes, plucked from Weir’s RatDog repertoire, the Grateful Dead songbook, and more.

Tuesday night’s concert commenced with a run-through of “Hell in a Bucket” before the ensemble worked Bob Dylan’s “Queen Jane Approximately” into their setlist. To follow the first numbers of the night, the group turned to Johnny Cash’s “Big River” before bringing their guest to the stage for an extensive sit-in that stretched the remainder of their initial frame. Next, Weir spoke directly to the audience, stating, “We’re going to bring a young friend of ours, Daniel Donato, out here for a couple of tunes.” He continued, “We’ll see just how quick a study he is.” 

With Donato on stage, the players kicked off their collaboration with “Ashes and Glass” into Roy Hamilton’s “Don’t Let Go,” complete with an “Elenor Rigby” theme. Next, the musicians looped back to “Ashes and Glass” before the following number, a cover of the Marty Robbins classic, “El Paso.” Then, they walked through the American Beauty number, “Candyman,” before dipping into the Presley-popularized “Hound Dog.” The favored cover represented the first time this group of musicians had played the song together and doubled as a bust out for Weir, whose last on-stage delivery of the Presley tune occurred on July 22, 1998. Then, to follow one of the evening’s high points, the group jumped into a set break before returning for their final frame. 

The latter half of Tuesday’s performance kicked off with a fitting choice given the official start to Mardi Gras on Feb. 21. The group cut into “Iko Iko” before “Bombs Away” and the Ace number, “Greatest Story Ever Told.” Next, Donato returned to the stage and assisted his hosts on the Grateful Dead classic, “Dark Star,” which ran over into a pairing of “China Cat Sunflower” with “I Know You Rider.” Then, the Nashville guitarist exited the stage, leaving Weir and company to take on “New Speedway Boogie,” “Black Peter,” and a set ending rendition of the Henry Whitter-penned “Going Down The Road Feelin’ Bad.” 

Donato returned one final time for the night’s encore and helped the band during a favorable take on From the Mars Hotel tune, “U.S. Blues.” After last night’s memorable performance in Memphis, Tenn., Weir and his band will take their tour to Asheville, N.C.’s Thomas Wolfe Auditorium this evening. Meanwhile, Donato is expected on stage at The Riverside Theatre in Milwaukee, Wis., tomorrow night.

Scroll down to view last night’s setlist. 

Bobby Weir and Wolf Bros

Orpheum Theatre – Memphis, Tenn.

Feb. 21, 2023

Set I: Hell in a Bucket, Queen Jane Approximately, Big River, Ashes and Glass+ > Don’t Let Go+ > Ashes and Glass+, El Paso+, Candyman+, Hound Dog+

Set II: Iko Iko, Bombs Away, Greatest Story Ever Told, Dark Star+, China Cat Sunflower+ > I Know You Rider+, New Speedway Boogie, Black Peter, Going Down the Road Feelin’ Band

Enc.: U.S. Blues+ 


+ With Daniel Donato 

Setlist via Bobby Weir’s official Instagram