Photo via Dave Matthews Band’s Facebook page
Dave Matthews Band played their final US date of the year at New York’s Madison Square Garden last night. The show concluded the ensemble’s fall tour, during which they debuted a new tune and mixed up their setlist a bit, opening several concerts with unexpected selections and rarer material. Friday night’s show at MSG also featured a slew of guests, including Sudan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks and Trombone Shorty.
Last night’s show also boasted a mix of bust outs and special guests. Partway through the evening, jazz guitarist Mark Whitfield, a presence at many of DMB’s past NYC shows, emerged for the first “Captain” since August 18, 2021. After a cover of Peter Gabriel’s “Sledgehammer,” Trombone Shorty returned for the second night in a row for the first “Smooth Rider’ since August 27, 2019 and remained onstage as the tune segued into “Crush.”
Near the end of the show, Cory Wong, who was in town for Vulfpeck’s run of shows in Brooklyn, took the stage for “Tripping Billies.” The Vulfpeck guitarist then remained onstage for the rest of the set, including the classic segue from “So Much to Say” into “Anyone Seen the Bridge” and “Too Much” as well as “Ants Marching.” (Wong grew up on DMB’s music but has never performed with the group before.) Trombone Shorty also guested on that final tune, before the night closed with an encore segment consisting of Matthews’ solo take on “Baby Blue” and a fitting “The Last Stop” finale that included a bit of Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant Song.”
Matthews and his group have a few shows in the frontman’s former home of South Africa scheduled in December.