One of the most thrilling aspects of attending a music festival is the idea that truly anything can happen. With so many different artists at the same place on the same day, there’s usually bound to be a few interesting collaborations to catch. One of the most dynamic and unexpected pairings this year took place at the Newport Folk Festival, where Jason Isbell was performing with his band the 400 Unit.
Near the end of Isbell’s set, just after performing “Cover Me Up,” he surprised everyone and brought out ’60s folk music legend David Crosby. Together, they launched into a searing, live take on the Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young track “Wooden Ships,” before segueing into a caustic version of that group’s anti-war, anti-violence anthem “Ohio.” Now, Isbell has shared an official version of the former song under his Southeastern Records label.
Even more importantly, he’s doing it for a great cause. Sales of the single will go to benefit the non-profit organization Head Count, whose stated goal is to works with musicians of all stripes to help promote participation in democracy in the United States.
You can stream Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit’s performance of “Wooden Ships” along with David Crosby below, or purchase it outright, here.