At Friday night’s Yo La Tengo show at Chicago’s Metro, fans got a surprise when the trio covered Wilco’s “If I Ever Was a Child” as the third song in their first set. Fans got a much bigger surprise a set and a half later when all six members of Wilco, on an off night in their own local residency, joined Yo La Tengo on stage for four more (non-Wilco) covers.
The supergroup jam covered The Beatles, “She’s a Woman,” Bob Dylan’s “Love Minus Zero/No Limit,” The Heartbreakers (as in Johnny Thunders, not Tom Petty)’ “One Track Mind,” and Fairport Convention’s “Who Knows Where the Time Goes?” It was the first time Wilco has played any of those songs, and the first time Yo La Tengo has played three of the four (they’ve done “Love Minus Zero” two prior times).
It started off fairly chaotic, as you’d probably expect with this many musicians on stage doing songs they’d never played before – Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy and Yo La Tengo’s Ira Kaplan are singing the Beatles lyrics off sheets of paper – but grew more confident as it went. The highlight, on the video at least, is the roaring “One Track Mind.”
Watch the full four-covers set below, followed by Yo La Tengo’s Wilco-less Wilco cover “If I Ever Was a Child” cover earlier in the evening. (They also reprised the “Goin’ Down the Road Feeling Bad” cover we wrote about recently.)