The Big Wu | 09.01.01 | Ranch Bowl | Omaha NE

On their latest trip to Omaha, The Big Wu had another packed house on Labor Day Weekend, Saturday September 1st. With local opening acts Ripple Effect and Strange Pleasures paving the way, the Wu came out to an enthusiastic Ranch Bowl crowd. Looking relaxed and ready to roll as they get set for 20+ dates around the Midwest, Southeast, and East coast with The Samples, the Wu played with an easy familiarity. The new "Ray Charles Can See" was a highlight of the first set, a testament to the Wu’s forward movement. This is a band that’s been focusing their energy and finding their voice.

The first set was good, but this was Saturday night, second set, and time for the Wu to turn it up for the fans that had driven from Minnesota and South Dakota (tip of the hat to the ‘Aberdeen Army’). "Silcanturnitova > Shaggy > Sil" got everybody’s funk up for the "House of Wu > Rocky Top > H.o.W." jam. It used to piss me off when Phish would play "Rocky Top," but not so with the Wu. The harmonies, which are one obvious sign of the band’s progression, were just right. "Rocky Top" was fun again and the crowd ate it up. With the crowd roaring approval, The Big Wu brought out Greg Beebe of Strange Pleasures to trade vocals with guitarist Jason Fladager on the Hunter/Garcia classic “Althea.” The set continued with a ripping “Jazz 88,” highlighted by keyboardist Al Oikiri‘s hot keys. The fun didn’t end ‘til after one (and after Andy Miller’s Ozzy impersonation), when the vocal crowd brought the Big Wu back out for a moving rendition of the “The Weight” with Fladager on acoustic guitar. Truly a night of Wu that was for the fans.

Catch The Big Wu on tour with The Samples!

Review by Pro
JamBase | Omaha, NE
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[Published on: 9/4/01]

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