Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Jason Isbell wrapped up a three-night stand with his band the 400 Unit at Bass Concert Hall on Sunday, but between the big shows, he squeezed in another gig. After the Saturday performance, Isbell headed down to the Continental Club and wound up joining ace Austin bar band the Booze Weasels for all of their second set.
READ MORE: Our interview with Jason Isbell
The Booze Weasels formed about 30 years ago when its four members — guitarists David Grissom and David Holt, bassist Jimmy Pettit and drummer Davis McLarty — were all part of Joe Ely’s backing band. None of them really knew Isbell, though McLarty says that Grissom and Isbell had met a few years ago when both were part of an Austin City Limits Hall of Fame show at ACL Live.
“What really happened is that Isbell called (Continental Club owner Steve) Wertheimer to see who was playing at (the club) on Saturday, and Steve contacted us to see if Jason could sit in,” McLarty explained by email on Monday morning. “He showed up, was super nice, and simply wanted to sit in. He played the entire 90-minute second set.”
Isbell’s manager, Traci Thomas, said that for Isbell’s part, “Jason loves nothing more than just sitting in playing guitar, so playing with those guys made his day.”
Intrepid Austin photographer and music fan Mike Fickel was on hand to capture it. That’s his shot above, as are these galleries he posted to Facebook:
Another fan on hand Saturday night, Patrick Morehead, captured a few minutes on video, including a rendition of the R&B classic “I Hear You Knocking”: