Today we look back to November 21, 2005…

Blues Traveler Scores New Year’s Goal

After a seven year break, Blues Traveler will once again host a New Year’s Eve concert this December. The group will ring in 2006 with a performance at eight block Tempe, AZs Fiesta Bowl Block Party. Blues Traveler will perform following a 10 PM fireworks display and play straight through the city’s midnight countdown. BTs concert will precede the Fiesta Bowl, scheduled to take place in Tempe the next day. Until then, John Popper will tour Europe with Operation Seasons Greetings. Also, be sure to read Dean Budnick’s interview with the band in the December/January issue of Relix.

Huey Lewis Lends Heart and Soul to Umphreys

Huey Lewis is rapidly emerging as the seventh, unofficial member of Umphreys McGee. Since first jamming with Umphreys at the Jammys last April, Lewis has collaborated with the group on several occasions, including with a Midwest appearance with his own band the News. Last Friday, Lewis joined Umphreys onstage once again during the groups two-night stand at New Yorks Irving Plaza. On Friday, the News-maker emerged during Umphreys second set for Bad is Bad and Women Wine and Song, reappearing during its encore for Heart and Soul. A night later, Lewis returned for a cover of the Bands The Weight, a number which showcased his considerable harmonica skills. On Friday, Umphreys McGees BIG Summer Classic collaborator Jeff Austin also lent his vocal skills to a cover of Night Rangers Sister Christian. While no movie stars jammed with Umphreys during its Irving Plaza appearance, as Jeremy Piven did last year, Hollywood it-couple Sarah Silverman and Jimmy Kimmel were spotted in attendance.

Who knows? Perhaps Umphreys McGee and Huey Lewis newfound friendship will be the first Jammys pairing to spawn a Jam on the Year nod of its own at the 2006 Jammys . Until then, Umphreys McGee will appear at Portland, ORs Crystal Ballroom on December 2.

Gov’t Mule’s Georgia ‘Dreams’

Over the past few years, Govt Mule has used its Atlanta appearances as an opportunity to jam with longtime Georgia resident, and sometimes Warren Haynes employer, Gregg Allman. This Saturday proved no different as Govt Mules About to Rage Tour rolled through Atlanta, GAs Tabernacle. Allman emerged at the start of Govt Mules second set, adding vocals and organ to a pair of signature blues numbers, Feel So Bad and Sky Is Crying, the later of which he covered on 2004s _ Lightning in a Bottle_ soundtrack. Allman then led Govt Mule through ABB chestnuts Statesboro Blues and Dreams. A night earlier, Daniel Sproul, who plays guitar in the evenings opening act Rose Hill Drive, joined Govt Mule onstage at the Tabernacle for Cortez the Killer.

Govt Mule continued its string on collaborations last night at Memphis New Daisy Theater. During its second set, blues-guitarist Hook Herrera appeared on 32-20 Blues and The Hunter. A bit later, Herreras bandmate, Alvin Youngblood Hart, emerged for Long Distance Call. The About to Rage Tour continues Wednesday at Washington, DC’s Constitution Hall.

Brothers in U-Melt

Saturday night U-Melt and Brothers Past shared a bill at Wilmington, NCs Marzz Theatre. The paired performers also collaborated onstage when Brothers Past keyboardist Tom McKee joined U-Melt towards the end of its opening set for ‘The Eternal Groove.’ Brothers Past will perform at Plains, PAs River Street Jazz Cafednesday, while U-Melts next scheduled gig is a late-night show at New Yorks Lions Den Friday.

70 Volt Parade Marches to a Different Drummer

Since its inception, Trey Anastasio has called 70 Volt Parade a work in progress. So its no surprise that Anastasio made yet another lineup change at Albanys Palace Theater Friday. Raymond Weber will replace drummer Skeeto Valdez for the remainder of Anastasios fall tour , signaling a new, perhaps groove oriented, direction for 70 Volt Parade. Weber, who has clocked in time with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Harry Connick Jr, as well as in movie Ray, came to Anastasio at the recommendation of his Dumpstaphunk bandmate bassist Tony Hall. Trey Anastasio Band trumpeter Russell Remington has also joined his former employer on the road this week, enhancing horn numbers like Push on Til the Day, Sand and Simple Twist up Dave.