Bill Kreutzmann to miss Dead & Company Red Rocks debut due to illness [Video]
Drummer Bill kreutzmann will not be in alignment when Death & Company takes the stage at Amphitheater of the Red Rocks in Morrison, CO tonight, October 19. Tuesday’s performance, the first of the group’s two shows at this week’s famous natural amphitheater, will serve as the debut for Dead & Company’s Red Rocks.
According to an update released shortly before the show, the Kreutzmann group will be out due to an illness unrelated to COVID-19. Instead of Billy, drummer Jay lane-familiar with Deadheads through his work with Wolf Bros and various others Grateful dead-related projects — will be on drums alongside Mickey hart.
Kreutzmann went into more detail in an article on his own Facebook page. Read Bill Kreutzmann’s full note on his absence from tonight’s Dead & Company show at the Red Rocks Amphitheater below:
My friends, one of the many things this pandemic has reminded us of is that health is more important than anything. I developed cold symptoms this week and had it checked out and am relieved to report that it is not covid and that it is not something serious either. However, out of caution, my medical team advised me to take it slow so that I can continue doing what I love: making music with my brothers.
As I just went to Red Rocks with the kids, I can tell you that the altitude here really affects me and can get worse with the respiratory symptoms I am experiencing today to create unnecessary difficulty. So out of caution we called my friend Jay Lane to assist us in the drum chair tonight.
I love you and don’t worry I’m not going anywhere. I’m just taking a break, so to speak, so we can keep dancing and shaking our bones. I’ll be back full steam ahead in a moment.
Thank you for your understanding,
Neither Kreutzmann nor the band have yet indicated whether the drummer will be available on other upcoming shows, including Wednesday’s second night at Red Rocks and a pair of nearby shows. Green Fiddler Amphitheater in Englewood, CO on Friday October 22 and Saturday October 23, likely taking a wait-and-see approach.
As Bob weir noted when the band took the stage with Lane a few moments ago, “So we’ve got a situation here tonight, and JonBo [John Mayer] here will help me explain it to all of you.
“It’s not COVID …” Mayer began. “… But that’s not good,” Weir added. “And so, Billy is not going to join us tonight, Billy Kreutzmann. And to make matters worse [laughs], we have Jay Lane here.
“But Bob,” Mayer interjected in a neutral tone, “what would you say to the people in the crowd who are now concerned about the condition of our friend and brother, Billy Kreutzmann?” Bob replied, “Billy will be fine. It’s not a COVID situation, and we look forward to its return, but in the meantime the show must go on. With that, the group embarked on an opening show “Not Fade Away”. Watch a video of the show’s intro and opening song below.
Dead & Company – Introductory Message> “Do not fade”
While Dead & Company has never played Red Rocks, that Dead spirit runs deep in Morrison. The Grateful death have performed there several times over the group’s three decades, while members of GratefulDead / Dead & Co Bob weir (with Wolf Bros) and Bill kreutzmann (with Billy and the kids) have both performed in the venue already in 2021. We’ll have to wait and see if Billy is ready to get back on stage at Red Rocks with Dead & Co tomorrow.
Feel better, Billy K, and break your leg, Jay! Head here for a full list of upcoming Dead & Company tour dates and check back to Live for live music tomorrow for a full performance recap.