Jam Cruise Exemplifies Collaborative Spirit on Day Three: Sit-ins

February 28, 2024
Jam Cruise Exemplifies Collaborative Spirit on Day Three: Sit-ins

Photo Credit: Hana Gustafson

Jam Cruise continued on Tuesday, Feb. 27, with an onslaught of collaborative moments steeped in improvisation. After a slight shift to the schedule, the evening of many highs got underway, with Steel Pulse welcoming folks back to the boat after a day in Montego Bay, Jamaica. David Hinds and company delivered a packed set, including top-tier renditions of “Don’t Let Go” and “Franklin’s Tower,” intermixed with other reggae-tinged favorites. 

With two days down, energy had built, and attendees were ready to groove while embracing the night three’s black-and-white, zebra-clad theme. Cory Wong brought the heat during his set, which overlapped with Keller Williams’ solo frame. The one-person jamband mixed in tunes from scene favorites, like Phish’s “The Wedge,” as well as originals, “Celebrate Your Youth,” “Doobie in My Pocket,” et al. To boot, the crowd ignited on a medley of “Kidney in a Cooler” and “Deep Elem Blues.”  

Unmatched team-ups ensued in the Golden Jazz Bar with a highly-anticipated performance by the Krasno Moore Project, featuring Joe Ashlar, filling in for Eric Finland. During the set, the band dipped into Stevie Wonder’s “Big Brother” before picking up material off Book of Queens, including instrumental takes on Billie Eilish and Amy Winehouse originals. Also included were riffs on The Beatles’ “Eleanor Rigby,” the cover evoked a sense of Jerry Garcia’s Feb. 28, 1980, Kean College rendition; perhaps the date had something to do with that… 

Highs continued with the arrival of guests, including the Dumpstaphunk horns section. More artists filtered on and off the stage, assisting Krasno, Moore and Ashlar. Duane Betts appeared before Karl Denson and George Porter filled the guest slot(s). During Porters’ introduction via Krasno, he referred to Porter as “The architect of funk music,” mentioning the significance the New Orleans giant had had on his own career. Denson praised Soulive’s first record, referencing his first listen in Portland, Maine, and praising the set. 

As expected, moe.’s frame brought the audience to their feet. The group segued and jammed through originals, as well as borrowed material from the likes of Pink Floyd. One of the night’s best moments was The Sweet Lillies’ hosted impromptu super jam in the Atrium. Fraying what one would expect from a bluegrass presentation, the band welcomed Daniel Donato, who added cosmic acoustic riffs. At the same time, DJ Logic layered turntable magic over bass, horns and more. During the collaboration, the ensemble covered Sir Mix-a-Lot’s 1991 chart-topper, “I Like Big Butts,” provoking a firestorm of enthusiasm. 

Before merging into the early morning hours, Cimafunk unleashed his signature mix of funk and hip-hop, rooted in Cuban and Afro-Caribbean music. For Cool Cool Cool’s solo appearance, the band got funky, cutting into new material, carried in many cases by vocal powerhouses Shira Elias, Sammi Garett and Josh Shwartz. A sit-in from Remain in Light Julie Slick was also included. Adrian Belew’s bassists swapped spots with the band’s mainstay, Digo Zambrano,  and added a fat bassline whenever necessary.

The fun continued after midnight with a lively display from Magic Beans in the Black and White Lounge. Jams ascended during Dumpstaphunk’s early morning frame in the Pantheon Theatre. Ivan Neville, Tony Hall, and their group of talented all-stars filled their stage time with memorable moments, taking a piece of New Orleans to the sea and treating the crowd to a groove-laden good time. 

View photos shared by Hana Gustafson below. Keep up with Relix on Instagram for more clips and special moments from Jam Cruise 20.

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