Cover art by Jay Blakesberg
Psychedelic funk aficionados Lettuce have added their distinctive twist to the Grateful Dead’s iconic 1978 track, “Shakedown Street,” just ahead of their upcoming performance at Dead Ahead in Riviera Cancún, Mexico.
In conjunction with the song’s release Lettuce have unveiled a lyric video created by Sunbronx, featuring vintage footage that captures the spirit and communal energy that persists in today’s music scene. Additionally, they tapped iconic photographer Jay Blakesberg for a photo of a shakedown street days past that also holds the fluid and free nature of the song.
Originally recorded in 2015, Lettuce’s rendition exudes a laid-back groove anchored by the rhythmic prowess of Adam Deitch (drums) and Erick “Jesus” Coomes (bass). The interplay between saxophonists Ryan Zoidis and Sam Kininger, along with the skillful guitar work of Adam “Shmeans” Smirnoff and Eric Krasno, delivers a fresh interpretation of the beloved song.
Deitch commented on the arrangement, saying, “It’s Shakedown Street mixed with Frenchmen Street. There’s a New Orleans feel on there that we felt worked well with the melody. Erick ‘Jesus’ Coomes did a great job channeling Jerry on the vocals.”
Coomes also shed light on the band’s decision to cover the iconic song, stating, “Whenever ‘Shakedown’ comes on, the whole crowd goes crazy, and it’s one of the biggest dance songs in their catalog. Since Lettuce specializes in dance and funk music, we thought we would do our best to make you bust a move and get into the groove. Enjoy!”
To mark the release and build anticipation for Dead Ahead, Coomes will be guest DJ-ing on Sirius’ Grateful Dead Channel, sharing his favorite Grateful Dead songs on Dec. 12, 14, 15 and 17, see times below.
Following Dead Ahead, Lettuce will kick off their month-long VIBE tour, hot on the heels of their first digital release of the 48-minute improvisational album VIBE. Listen to Lettuce’s take on “Shakedown Street” below.
Coomes Grateful Dead Channel Slots
- Tues 12/12 @ 10am ET
- Thur 12/14 @ Midnight ET
- Fri 12/15 @ 5pm ET
- Sun 12/17 @ 9am ET