The walls shook and so did our bodies as Widespread Panic played a two night run at the Mid-South Coliseum, bringing their Fall Tour 2002 to a close. Personally, I had not been able to attend any other
shows on the tour until this one. Like many others in the Panic family, I was curious about how it would be this
Apples and oranges seems to be an accurate description of the
new sound WSP is taking on. There is a hot, dirty southern rock
sound that is coming alive. It will reach inside you
and stir your bones. The shows were on time and
organic: A new mother nature takin' over!
Friday's show was filled with sentimental
moments and surprises. The room was ready to give back
to their band and the synergy created one of those
shows that just "hit the mark". JB said, "lotta
memories in this room tonight..." inviting all of us to
share a moment with our beloved Houser, while
simultaneously enjoying the sound that George
McConnell is bringing to the mix.
It was exciting to
see George and Schools relate so easily to each other.
George is definitely getting more
comfortable with the repertoire, and thereby able to take
bigger, more daring journeys within the music. Schools is there
applauding him (literally) and the communication
between JB, Schools and George is producing exciting
results. The crowd left Friday knowing that Panic would be rockin' and ready the next night.
Saturday's show brought people in from far and wide. The house size doubled and the natives were restless. The first set ripped with rockin' tunes and saw Randall
Bramblett sitting in on such favorites as "Chilly
Water" and "Henry Parsons Died." Second set brought Mavis Staples to the stage to lend her vocals to "Hope in a Hopeless World." The second set also saw a "Driving
Song> City of Dreams> Driving Song," a treat none of us
expected for quite some time. The boys brought the
heat back around for a triple song encore of "Doreatha," "All Time Low," "Imitation Leather Shoes" -(and I don't want to fake it ANYMORE!) that left us
all certain why we follow this band.
Change is hard; there is no doubt about that. Some of us
embrace it while others resist. Since August the Panic
community has been in serious transition. The band is
resilient and committed to reinventing themselves
where they are now, while always remembering the
journey that brought them here. They are coming
together, and we have much to look forward to.
See you in Atlanta...
Words | Liz Cupples
Images | The Kayceman
JamBase | Worldwide
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