Tuesday, January 5, 2016
Band Members: Garth Weber - Lead Guitar, David Margen - Bass Guitar, Bill Kreutzmann - Drums,
Barry Flast - Keyboards, Vocals, Matthew Kelly - Harmonica, Guitar, Vocals
Kingfish is an American rock band led by Matthew Kelly, a musician, singer, and songwriter who plays guitar and harmonica. Kelly co-founded Kingfish in 1973 with New Riders of the Purple Sage bass player Dave Torbert and fellow San Francisco Bay Area musicians Robbie Hoddinott, Chris Herold, and Mick Ward. However, Ward died in a car accident later that year.
In 1974, Kingfish became more well known, and signed their first record contract, after Grateful Dead member Bob Weir, a long time friend of Kelly's, joined the band. (Kelly had previously been a guest musician on the Grateful Dead album Wake of the Flood.) Weir toured with Kingfish and was a band member on their first two albums, Kingfish and Live 'N' Kickin'. When the Dead started touring again in 1976, Weir left Kingfish. (Kelly later appeared on the Grateful Dead albums Shakedown Street and The Closing of Winterland, and on Weir's album Bobby & the Midnites. In 1995 he became a founding member of Weir's band Ratdog.)
The lineup of the band continued to change, with Kelly and Torbert remaining at the core. Then, in 1980, Kingfish disbanded. Dave Torbert died in 1983.
Starting in 1984, Kingfish would regroup from time to time and go on tour with a gradually evolving lineup of musicians led by Matthew Kelly.1985 has the band joined by drummer Billy Kreutzman from the Grateful Dead (In 1987, Kelly also released a solo album called A Wing and a Prayer.) In 1999 Kingfish released a new studio album, Sundown on the Forest, recorded over a period of several years with different combinations of musicians, including Bob Weir.