On March 2, 2020, in Minneapolis, Nathaniel Rateliff kicked off his highly anticipated tour supporting And It's Still Alright, the singer-songwriter's acclaimed new solo album that had just been released. Nine days later everything changed — the pandemic hit, and the sold-out nine-month run was cancelled. For Rateliff and the incredible talent he assembled for this run, it was a crushing blow. Even in its initial stages, the band and crew knew they had something incredibly special.
The early shows highlighted various aspects of Rateliff's stellar musicianship, vacillating between warm, stripped-back moments with just voice and acoustic guitar to a full 10-piece folk band accompaniment including a string quartet-and all manner of configurations in between.
After a summer lamenting what might have been, Rateliff and the entire band gathered in mid-September for a series of live-streamed shows at Colorado's legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre to benefit the Denver-based musician's charitable foundation, The Marigold Project. Now, for the tens of thousands of disappointed fans for whom the live experience was not to be, Nathaniel Rateliff offers Red Rocks 2020, a pristine live recording, produced by Rateliff and mixed by Patrick Meese, featuring 18 tracks in nearly 90-minute of music.
Red Rocks 2020 covers an amazing range of music from Rateliff's celebrated career, music that had never been performed together live before the ill-fated tour including several jewels from And It's Still Alright, and Rateliff solo albums, In Memory of Loss, Falling Faster Than You Can Run and the Shroud EP, along with "Still Out There Running," a haunting and urgent track from 2017's much loved Night Sweats' LP, Tearing at the Seams. In addition, close friend Kevin Morby, the acclaimed indie-musician who was set to open the subsequently cancelled August Red Rocks dates, joins Rateliff and the band here for an amazing version of Leonard Cohen's "There Is A War."
The stellar cast of musicians includes Rateliff (guitar) with fellow Night Sweats Joseph Pope III (bass), Mark Shusterman (keys), the aforementioned Patrick Meese (drums, keys, guitar) and Luke Mossman (guitar), along with James Barone (drums, guitar), Joy Adams (cello), Rachel Sliker (viola), Adrienne Short (violin) and Chris Jusell (violin.)