All-star lineup pays tribute to Rolling Stones at Stones Fest


Butch Walker works the crowd for a finale of "You Can't Always Get What You Want" at Stones Fest. - ALEX WOODWARD
  • Butch Walker works the crowd for a finale of "You Can't Always Get What You Want" at Stones Fest.

The New York-based Best Fest — which tours its Dylan, Petty and Stones Fests with a rotating roster of artists and performers to benefit musicians' charities — packed its Stones Fest into Tipitina's July 17 with an all-star lineup.

The Best Fest house band, dubbed The Cabin Down Below Band, captured the infamously loose spirit of the Stones and banged out two dozen hits. Following opener "Monkey Man," Butch Walker joined the band for "Honky Tonk Women" — he also led closing numbers "You Can't Always Get What You Want" and "Sympathy for the Devil" with the rest of the 30-plus crew.

Scott McMicken and Toby Leaman of Dr. Dog joined in for "19th Nervous Breakdown" (and, later, returned with Jim Belushi on harmonica for "Dear Doctor") followed by Guster's Ryan Miller on "Under My Thumb." Wilco's Pat Sansone went full-on hand-on-hip, finger-wagging Jagger for "Waiting on a Friend."

Ann Wilson of Heart saved her signature wails for stunners "Wild Horses" and "Sister Morphine" but it was Ruby Amanfu's pipes that blew the doors down on "Tumbling Dice" and in a duet with Butch Walker on "Gimme Shelter."

Singer-songwriter Vanessa Carlton led a breezy "Beast of Burden" setting up mid-set scorchers, from Midlake's Eric Pulido (with actor Danny Masterson) taking on "Street Fighting Man" to Baton Rouge bluesman Jonathan Boogie Long leading a blistering solo-filled and heavy, down-tempo soul spin on "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction." Later, guitarist Lukas Nelson ripped into "Miss You" and shredded on "Gimme Shelter" with his teeth.

Nashville outlaw country singer Nikki Lane — in a witchy, leather fringe cape-thing — bounced through the Keith Richards track "Happy" (she also did a duet with Ruby Amanfu for "Bitch"). Singer-songwriter Joe Pug powered through Exile on Main Street opener "Rocks Off" — backed with a four-deep horn section faithfully recreating the Stones' blasts of brass between its rich rhythm section. Deer Tick's John McCauley did a lovely "Dead Flowers" and guitarist Doyle Bramhall II led the band through a rugged, dark "Ventilator Blues."

George Porter Jr. sang and thumped the bass through "The Last Time" and Walter "Wolfman" Washington joined in for "It's Only Rock 'n' Roll"  — though the Wolfman replaced his verses with some jazzy solos. Ivan Neville also sat in on organ and delivered an animated vocal performance for the finale "Sympathy for the Devil" — as a duet with Ann Wilson — backed by the rest of the impressive cast.

The event — sponsored by Jameson — donated all its ticket proceeds to Sweet Relief Musicians Fund, and $1 from each ticket went to the Tipitina's Foundation.

Here's the setlist:

"Monkey Man"
"Honky Tonk Women" feat. Butch Walker
"19th Nervous Breakdown" feat. Dr. Dog's Scott McMicken and Toby Leaman
"Under My Thumb" feat. Ryan Miller of Guster
"Jumpin' Jack Flash" feat. Ace Harper and Matt Sorum (of Guns n' Roses)
"Beast of Burden" feat. Vanessa Carlton
"Tumbling Dice" feat. Ruby Amanfu
"Street Fighting Man" feat. Eric Pulido of Midlake and Danny Masterson
"Waiting on a Friend" feat. Wilco's Pat Sansone and Glenn Kotche
"Wild Horses" feat. Ann Wilson
"Happy" feat. Nikki Lane
"Dear Doctor" feat. Dr. Dog's Scott McMicken and Toby Leaman
"Rocks Off" feat. Joe Pug
"Miss You" feat. Lukas Nelson
"Paint it Black" feat. The White Buffalo
"Bitch" feat. Ruby Amanfu and Nikki Lane
"The Last Time" feat. George Porter Jr.
"It's Only Rock 'n' Roll" feat. Walter "Wolfman" Washington and George Porter Jr.
"Dead Flowers" feat. Deer Tick's John McCauley
"Sister Morphine" feat. Ann Wilson and Doyle Bramhall II
"Ventilator Blues" feat. Doyle Bramhall II
"Gimme Shelter" feat. Ruby Amanfu and Butch Walker
"You Can't Always Get What You Want"
"Sympathy for the Devil"

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