Back on October 28th, Wilco, Lucinda Williams, and Alejandro Escovedo all saw induction into the Austin City Limits Hall of Fame. Tonight, January 8th, PBS will air a special presentation of the induction ceremony, which will feature an all-star cast of musicians joining Wilco on “California Stars”, a video of which is available now.
Originally penned by Woody Guthrie, Wilco and Billy Bragg wrote music for the unreleased “California Stars” lyrics and included the song on 1998’s Mermaid Avenue. The track has since been a platform for collaboration, with Wilco often inviting the opening act on tour to join in. This performance at Austin City Limits, however, had by far the most star power.
“We’d like to invite… everybody back up on the stage,” said frontman Jeff Tweedy, which prompted the train of musicians to make their way to the performance area. The song saw Wilco joined by everyone from Margo Price and Terry Allen, to Japanese Breakfast, Lenny Kaye, Sheila E., Bill Callahan, and Alex Ruiz. The cast of musicians also included Alejandro Escovedo and Rosanne Cash, who added vocals, as well as Jason Isbell and Lloyd Maines who both joined Nels Cline in taking solos on their respective instruments.
Up next for Wilco is a sold-out, four-night destination event at Hard Rock Hotel in Riviera Maya, Mexico (1/17–1/20). Then in May, the band will head to North Adams, MA’s Mass MoCa for the return of Wilco’s own Solid Sound Festival on May 27th–29th. Head here for tickets and additional tour information.
Watch Wilco perform “California Stars” with Jason Isbell, Japanese Breakfast, and more at the Austin City Limits Hall of Fame awards ceremony. Austin City Limits 7th Annual Hall of Fame Honors air Saturday at 9 p.m. ET on PBS. A special 90-minute episode streams online beginning Sunday at 10 a.m. ET.
Wilco w/Special Guests – “California Stars” – 10/28/21
[H/T Rolling Stone]