Five Tunes Dark Star Orchestra Could Cover the Dead Covering

​It is safe to say that Dark Star Orchestra is among the best loved tribute acts in the cosmos, right alongside myriad other Grateful Dead tribute bands, and Hollywood, Florida's Hot Rod (pure Rod Stewart awesomeness). This is so because Deadheads still love the Dead with such heart and devotion that anyone, or any band, that can evoke the spirit that first entered this world through the bodies, minds, and instruments of Jerry Garcia and the gang nearly half a century ago is automatically deemed worthy of that same Good Lovin' that was once given and received by 'Jerr Bear' himself.

And, Dark Star Orchestra is arguably the best at doing just that. Their level of replication is of the highest quality, not just because they sound so much like the Dead, down to the minute details, but because they do it with the intention of honoring the band which brought so much joy to so many.

Like DSO honors the Dead, the Dead regularly honored those who inspired them, though not to that same fanatical degree. Many songs not written by Dead members became standards in the repertoire, like Bonnie Dobson's "Morning Dew," The Young Rascal's "Good Lovin'," and Buddy Holly's "Not Fade Away." The Dead made these songs their own.

Also though, the Dead would often play covers in the more traditional sense -- special treats played as nods to fellow artists. Here are a handful of those that it would be cool to hear DSO do at Revolution this Saturday, as played by the Dead in their time.

Of course, DSO recreates entire Dead shows, so these selections are made with that in mind. This writer is partial to '70s Dead, as you will see.

"It's All Over Now, Baby Blue" by Bob Dylan

Clearly, Dylan was the Dead's favorite artist to cover. It would have been fair to just post five Dylan tunes here, but for the sake of variety we'll stick to just one. And, this is the best one. 

"Oh, Boy!" by Buddy Holly
Fun tune!

"Promised Land" by Chuck Berry
This was a standard for the Dead, and always a burner!

"Me and Bobby McGee" by Kris Kristofferson
This would be like DSO covering the Dead, covering Janis Joplin, covering Kristofferson. Tough this song was penned by the latter, the Dead was likely playing this tune with their dear friend Janis in their hearts. 

"She Belongs to Me" by Bob Dylan
Okay, I lied! This is the second Dylan song and it is not from the '70s, but, shit, this is too beautiful to not include. Enjoy. 

Honorable Mentions:

"Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again" by Bob Dylan
This one was not left off because it would have been the third Dylan song, but rather because only Bob Weir himself is allowed to butcher it with crazy screaming.

"Why Don't We Do It in the Road?" by The Beatles
This one was sung by Phil Lesh, who has a voice which cannot be replicated by anyone or anything. This was left off the list for the same reason as the last one. 

"Warewolves of London" by Warren Zevon
This one was left off only because this writer wants to hear a '70s show.

Dark Star Orchestra. 8p.m. Saturday, March 3 at Revolution, 100 SW 3Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $38.50. Click here.

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Travis Newbill