Widespread Panic Introduces New Covers on New Year’s Eve
Last night, Widespread Panic celebrated New Year’s Eve at Charlotte, NC’s Time Warner Arena. Though the group played an intimate Tunes for Tots benefit at Charlotte’s Fillmore on December 30, last night’s show ended the group’s 10-month hiatus for most fans.
Panic kicked things off with a cover of Neil Young’s “Last Dance” and quickly moved into “Vacation” and “Last Dance.” They paused for the first time before “Ribs & Whiskey,” but closed their first set with two segues: “Party At Your Mama’s House” into “Stop Breakin’ Down Blues” and “All Time Low” into “Rock.”
During their second set, Widespread Panic introduced the first of three new seasonal-appropriate covers. After kicking off their hour-long set with “Disco,” the group moved into “Greta” and “Love Tractor.” From there, they launched into “Sell Sell,” “Machine,” “Barstools and Dreamers” and—as midnight approached—the timely “Up All Night.” The set ended with the band’s first take on the traditional folk song “Midnight Special.”
The clock struck midnight between Widespread Panic’s second and third sets. When the band returned to the stage, frontman John Bell addressed the crowd. After “Pigeons,” Widespread Panic debuted their second new cover, Jerry Ragovoy’s “Time Is On My Side.” “Fishwater” came next, followed by a segue from “Blue Indian” into “Ride Me High,” a suite that moved from “Goin’ Out West” into “Jack,” “Maggot Brain” and “Chilly Water,” and, finally, the anthem “Ain’t Life Grand.”
The evening closed with an extended encore. The segment began with “Driving Song” and moved into The Beatles’ “The Ballad of John and Yoko,” a song the ensemble debuted on their acoustic Wood Tour earlier this year. The song morphed into the band’s debut cover of the John Lennon/Yoko Ono collaboration “Happy Xmas (War Is Over),” back into “Driving Song” and, finally, “Tall Boy.”
On a lighter note, at one point during the show when guitarist Jimmy Herring’s amp went out bassist Dave Schools joked, “the Mayans were right about your amp.” Widespread Panic will kick off their Panic en la Playa Dos event on January 27.
Here’s a look at last night’s setlist via Panicstream.com
Monday, December 31, Time Warner Arena, Charlotte, NC
Set I:Last Dance > Vacation > Last Dance, Ribs & Whiskey, Party At Your Mama’s House > Stop Breakin’ Down Blues, All Time Low > Rock
Set II: Disco > Greta > Love Tractor, Sell Sell, Machine > Barstools and Dreamers, Up All Night, Midnight Special
Set III: Pigeons, Time Is On My Side, Fishwater, Blue Indian > Ride Me High, Goin’ Out West > Jack > Maggot Brain > Chilly Water, Ain’t Life Grand
E: Driving Song > The Ballad of John and Yoko > Happy Xmas (War Is Over) > Driving Song > Tall Boy