2014 was an amazing year of shows. Maybe the most varied and satisfying year of my life. Certainly some of the highest highlights of nearly 30 years of playing music in front of people. Here’s all the shows I did as a leader, some of the ones I did as a sideman, and the songs played – in most cases. For some of the shows I just don’t recall what exactly was played and I don’t have any notes or recordings to reference. Videos are linked where available. Thanks to David Sameshima for so many great photographs, and to Heather Copeland, Mark Hubert, Jim Summers and Rachel Drew for the videos. And thanks to everyone who came to the shows!!!!
-Steve, Dec 22, 2014

January 13The Hideout
with Robbie Fulks, Gerald Dowd, Nora O’Connor, Scott Stevenson
“Bitter Ex-Beatles”
sue me, sue you blues (GH)
isn’t it a pity   (GH)
wah-wah    (GH)
too many people   (PM)
3 legs       (PM)
dear friend   (PM)
how do you sleep   (JL)
outta space   (Billy Preston)
god      (JL)
i found out   (JL)
early 1970    (Ringo)
back off boogaloo    (Ringo)
two of us (Paul and John)

January 24   FitzGeralds
Dolly Varden with Phil Angotti
This show featured a lot of Diane Christiansen’s songs. It was a great night and Phil and his band were phenomenal as always.

DV at Fitzgeralds









Time For Me To Leave
Lucky 23 (DC)
Walking The Chalkline Again
The Truth Is Told
The Lotus Hour (DC)
Why Why Why
Is That Your Boy (DC)
The Thing You Love Is Killing You
Wish I Were Here (DC)
California Zephyr
1000 Men Like Cigarettes (DC)
Some Sequined Angel (DC)
Sunflower Drag (DC)
Saskatchewan To Chicago
Almost Made It
Gone So Far (DC)
For A While

Feb 3 – Acoustic Explosion at Silvie’s
solo set
silvie's feb









Feb 16 – Funeral Bonsai Wedding at Simon’s










We played a lot of songs. I don’t remember which ones. It was really fun.
Robert Loerzel / Underground Bee photos and blog post here

The Hideout
February 22
with Ed Holstein
“from Old Town To Greenwich Villiage”
blog post at Underground Bee about this show









solo set:
Saskatchewan to Chicago
The Night of the Liquor Store Fire
Long Overdue
Last Thing On My Mind (Tom Paxton)
Trouble In Mind (Big Bill Broonzy cover)

I played a set with Eddie, too. I just remember his beautiful version of “Mr. Tambourine Man.” I think we did 4 strong winds, too.

FitzGerald’s Side Bar
April 5 with Alton Smith
Bring It On Home To Me (Sam Cooke)
In The Valley Of The Whale
Jesus Dropped The Charges (O’Neal Twins)
Rain In The Afternoon (Alton Smith)
Whispering Pines (Richard Manuel)

Funeral Bonsai Wedding
April 12
Szold Music and Dance Hall
Old Town School of Folk Music

photo by Rachel Drew - red filter
photo by Rachel Drew – red filter


















Ezra Pound and the Big Wood River
The Night of the Liquor Store Fire
Today She Found The Way to Break My Heart
Long Overdue (with Diane Christiansen)
As Soon As I Walk In
Valley of the Whale
Confusion  (with the Bonsettes: Diane Christiansen, Rachel Drew, Shelley Miller)
Anywhere You Landed
Harmonium song
In The Glow (with Diane Christiansen)
Love Is A Blessing  (with the Bonsettes)

Steve Dawson / Robbie Fulks
The Hideout
April 21
Guess I got it wrong. RF
Real Money RF
Biloxi Jesse Winchester
My Old Scene’s Got Me Down RF
Kids and the cabin RF
The Night of the Liquor Store Fire SD
In The Valley of the Whale SD
Obsidian SD
Thing you love is killing you SD
Feeling Yourself Disintegrate Flaming Lips
Johnny Feelgood. Liz Phair
Big City, Merle Haggard
I’m the One I Despise sd
How Deep Is Your Love Bee Gees

May 5 – Uncommon Ground (Devon)
Sue Fink, Jenny Bienemann, Sue Demel
songwriters in the round
I know I played Ezra Pound

Funeral Bonsai Wedding and Robbie Fulks
June 2
J. Pritzker Pavillion
Millennium Park, Chicago















Steve Dawson & Ingrid Graudins
FitzGerald’s Side Bar  
June 13
an evening of duets with my of my all time favorite singers. I don’t remember what we sang, though.

Steve Dawson solo with Rachel Drew and Shelley Miller
songwriters in the round
June 15
Uncommon Ground on Clark Street










This show cemented my resolve to never set foot in Uncommon Ground ever again. Shelley and Rachel both were great but the venue was a disaster.
The venue claims to support live music but, after playing here dozens of times over many years, I have come to realize that their attitude and treatment of performers betrays their true goal: soaking music fans for as much money as possible on overpriced food and beverages while playing lip service to supporting live music. If you are a musician looking to play in Chicago, consider this a warning about Uncommon Ground. These people are bad news. Stay away.

Slab Fork (me, Alton Smith, John Abbey, Gerald Dowd, John Mead, Bill Brickey, Wally Rozak, Mike Mann, Manny Braces)
the Music of Bill Withers
July 16
City Winery Chicago
fun night of Bill Withers songs with an incredible band.










Lonely Town, Lonely Street
Ain’t No Sunshine
Who Is He and What Is He to You
Kissing My Love
Hope She’ll Be Happier
The Same Love That Made Me Laugh
Just the Two of Us
Do It Good
Moanin’ and Groanin’
Use Me
Grandma’s Hands
Let Me In Your Life
I Can’t Write Left Handed
Lean On Me
Lovely Day
Let Us Love
Harlem/Cold Baloney
I Wish You Well

Funeral Bonsai Wedding at Simon’s
August 10
I don’t remember. I’m sure it was fun.
There was goat dancing!

Funeral Bonsai Wedding
album release concert with Rock Falls
Sept 12










1. Ezra Pound and the Big Wood River
transition /  intro to mastodons
2. Mastodons
3. As Soon As I Walk In
4. In The Valley of the Whale (with DC)
5. In The Glow (with DC)
6. The Night of the Liquor Store Fire (with Robbie)
7 Anywhere You Landed (with Rachel and Diane)
8. Harmonium Song
9. Long Overdue (with DC)
10. Confusion (with the Bonsettes)
11. Love Is a Blessing (with the Bonsettes)
12. The Monkey Mind Is On The Prowl
encore: Mayfly

Funeral Bonsai Wedding (trio – no Frank Rosaly for this show)
The Stage at KDHX (St Louis)
Sept 13
I don’t remember exactly what we played. Similar to Sept 12.

Funeral Bonsai Wedding trio
Daytrotter Session
Rock Island, IL
Sept 14
The Night of the Liquor Store Fire
In The Valley Of The Whale (with DC)
In The Glow (with DC)
As Soon As I Walk In

The Music of Paul McCartney
with Phil Angotti, Casey McDonough, Carolyn Engelmann and Tommi Zender
Szold Music and Dance Hall   Old town School of Folk Music   Oct 11

Steve Dawson with Jason Adasiewicz, Jason Roebke and Diane Christiansen
Comfort Station     Nov 6th










Liquor Store Fire
As Soon As I Walk In
Ezra Pound
In the glow  – acoustic / tuning
In The Valley of the Whale
Harmonium Song
10,000 pounds
The Monkey Mind Is On The Prowl

Solo Set: Moonlight Studios
Opening Eric Majeski’s debut concert
November 22nd

Split Single
Riviera Theater, opening for Wilco!
Dec 5  








All songs by Jason Narducy
Waiting For The Sun
Never Look Back
Fragmented World
Made For Breaking
Love Is You
My Heart Is Your Shadow
Last Goodbye
Broken Spines

Steve Dawson with Alton Smith
FitzGerald’s Sidebar
Dec 6
Step By Step (Clarence Carter)
Home (Alton Smith)
Rebecca Highway (Alton Smith)
Obsidian (SD)
The Night of The Liquor Store Fire (SD)
Jesus Dropped the Charges (O’Neal Twins)
Twilight – R. Robertson / The Band

Jesus Christ Trio (Robbie Fulks, Steve Dawson, Diane Christiansen)
The Hideout
Dec 8











his eye is on the sparrow – traditional – based on the Harmonizing Four’s version
green pastures – ralph Stanley
jesus is waiting – Al Green
jesus dropped the charges – O’Neal Twins
you don’t knock – Staples Singers
jesus was a crossmaker – Judee Sill
see how they done my lord – The Sensational Nightingales
strange man – Dorothy Love Coates
precious angel – Bob Dylan
the touch of God’s hand – Longview
Save Me Jesus – Bobby Charles
God Moves on the Water  – Blind Willie Johnson
Jesus – VU
Up Above My Head – Sister Rosetta Tharpe

Dolly Varden and Funeral Bonsai Wedding
Dec 12











Funeral Bonsai Wedding
As Soon As I Walk In
Night of the Liquor Store Fire
In The Glow (with Diane)
In The Valley of the Whale (with Diane)
Ezra Pound and the Big Wood River
Confusion (with Bonsettes)
Harmonium Song
Be Here Now (George Harrison)

Dolly Varden:
Simple Pleasure
Progress Note*
Del Mar ‘76
Thing You Love
Wish I were here
Why Why Why
Small Pockets
Not Ashamed
Lotus Hour
Everything is Better
1000 Men Like Cigarettes
Saskatchewan To Chicago
D Magnets
Almost Made it
Thank You

You Sexy Thing
Air Dry