Dylan was performing at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona on Friday (June 23) when he played a rendition of the song, originally taken from the Dead’s 1973 album ‘Wake of the Flood’.
While the recent concert marked Dylan’s first time performing ‘Stella Blue’, it continues a recent streak of Grateful Dead covers the legendary singer-songwriter has played this year. Watch fan-shot footage of Dylan performing ‘Stella Blue’ below:
In April, while touring Japan in support of latest album ‘Rough and Rowdy Ways’, Dylan debuted two Grateful Dead covers at separate shows on the run – both songs taken from 1970 album ‘American Beauty’. He covered ‘Truckin” during a show in Tokyo on April 12, then played a rendition of ‘Brokedown Palace’ during a gig in Nagoya on April 18.
Before this year, Dylan had only covered four Grateful Dead songs live throughout his career: ‘Friend of the Devil’, ‘West L.A. Fadeaway’, ‘Alabama Getaway’ and ‘Black Muddy River’. Dylan toured with the Grateful Dead in 1987, resulting in the live album ‘Dylan & the Dead’.
Earlier this month, Dylan released new album ‘Shadow Kingdom’. The album featured the recordings that appeared in his Alm Har’el-directed 2021 concert film of the same name, which featured Dylan and a backing band “performing” along to pre-recorded tracks from across his back catalogue.
Dylan’s most recent studio album, ‘Rough and Rowdy Ways’, arrived in 2020. In a five-star review, NME called the record “arguably [Dylan’s] grandest poetic statement yet, a sweeping panorama of culture, history and philosophy”.