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Published: 2009/10/19

Panic and the Allmans Head "Southbound" for the Final Time

Above: Photo by Colin Vereen, from www.widespreadpanic.com

The Allman Brothers Band’s extended, collaboration-heavy tour with Widespread Panic came to a close this weekend with a pair of Texas performances. The first gig took place Friday night at Dallas’ Superpages.com Center. Widespread Panic played first and Derek Trucks took the stage for the band for both “Second Skin” and “Blackout Blues.” Widespread Panic frontman John Bell returned the favor during the Allman Brothers Band’s set by sitting in on a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Highway 61 Revisited.”

The tour came to a close the following night at Houston’s Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion. Widespread Panic opened once again, but this time invited out Warren Haynes for a run from “Use Me” into Neil Young’s “Cortez the Killer.” Though Widespread Panic has not played the song since 2002, Haynes has interpreted the popular cover with a range of bands over the past few years. The Allman Brothers Band then used its headlining set as something of an end of tour party. Both Bell and Widespread Panic percussionist Sunny Ortiz sat in on “I Walk On Gilded Splinters,” while Ortiz and Panic guitarists Jimmy Herring took the stage for the Dead’s “Franklin’s Tower” (a staple during guitarist’s tenure in the Allman Brothers Band). Later in the set, Panic bassist Dave Schools emerged for “Dreams” and Herring—who unquestionably wins the tour’s collaboration award—took the stage for a set-closing “In Memory of Elizabeth Reed.” Gregg Allman & Friends keyboadist Bruce Katz also aided the still ailing Allman for much of the weekend.

Fittingly, the tour came to a close with all the members of Widespread Panic and the Allman Brothers onstage for the lone encore of “Southbound.” In total, 13 musicians were onstage, including five drummers, four guitarists, two bassists, one organist and a keyboardist. The Allman Brothers will perform at Hollywood, FL’s Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino this Tuesday, while Widespread Panic is off the road until an appearance at Austin, TX’s Austin Music Hall on October 30.

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