On May 10, 2016, Dead & Company, a band including surviving members of the Grateful Dead and guitarist John Mayer, performed on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” for Kimmel’s summer concert series and used the opportunity to advocate for the legalization of marijuana.
According to Los Angeles Times, the band rallied at least 300 marijuana legalization advocates for the performance, including members of the California Cannabis Industry Association and Buds & Roses, a medical marijuana collective in Los Angeles. The attendees wore pro-marijuana shirts and waved signs so that the pro-legalization message was subtly woven into the national broadcast.
“The folks it would be hitting on that broadcast would be outside our normal sphere of influence,” said Bob Weir, a founding member of the Grateful Dead, in an interview with the L.A. Times prior to the performance. “We’re about music, but we’re about other stuff as well, and we always have been. We need to make our feelings on the subject as apparent as we can.”
“They’re respectful advocates, and they’re very thoughtful in their approach to this entire industry,” said Bernie Cahill, co-manager of Dead & Company. “I don’t see that changing.”
According to Live for Live Music, Dead & Company played a five-song set: “Bertha,” “Scarlet Begonias,” “Fire On The Mountain,” “Althea” and “Not Fade Away.” Of the five songs, only “Bertha” was aired during the live broadcast.
While the Dead & Company’s performance showcased a pro-legalization message, the performance also promoted the band’s upcoming summer tour.
Songs from last night’s performance can be viewed below.