Hear the Watkins Family Hour Cover the Grateful Dead’s ‘Brokedown Palace’
Siblings Sara and Sean Watkins of Nickel Creek will soon release their Watkins Family Hour album, and the closing track, a cover of the Grateful Dead's "Brokedown Palace," is now available for fan consumption.
The self-titled debut album from the Watkins Family Hour -- featuring collaborators such as Fiona Apple, Benmont Tench of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, bassist Sebastian Steinberg and others who have joined the Watkins siblings during their monthly stage show at Los Angeles' Largo throughout the years since it began in 2002 -- is scheduled for release on July 24. Its 11 tracks are all classic covers, Fleetwood Mac's "Steal Your Heart Away," Bob Dylan’s “Going Going Gone" and “Not in Nottingham” from the 1973 Disney film Robin Hood among them.
The variety of covers makes the Watkins Family Hour album a unique tapestry of songs, all sewn together with the Watkins' vocal precision and musical aptitude. The band's cover of "Brokedown Palace" has Sara Watkins on lead vocals, and her crystal-clear tone embraces the song -- a message of farewell that was on the Dead’s 1970 album American Beauty -- in a whole new way.
Adds her brother, ""Brokedown Palace" is one of those songs that, once you start playing it, seems to play itself. It's a Grateful Dead song and, thus, relatively new, yet it feels like a song that has always existed. It just feels so good right off the bat."
The Watkins Family Hour band will tour in support of the album’s release, with different performers joining them at each stop, making every single show unique.
“If we can’t get everyone to LA to do our show, we’ll come to them. We are coming to towns where we have friends and we can have those moments, even if it’s not our home club," Sara Watkins says, adding, “It’s the people on stage who make that happen; it’s just a matter of getting the right group of people together. We are being thoughtful about where we are going so we can have that sort of flexibility. It will be a very different show in every town.”
A list of Watkins Family Hour tour dates can be found on the Watkins Family Hour website.
Listen to the Watkins Family Hour, "Brokedown Palace":