Umphrey’s McGee Celebrate Their 15th Anniversary, Confirm Additional 2013 Dates
Umphrey’s McGee’s first show
Last night, Umphrey’s McGee celebrated the 15th anniversary of their first show with an intimate gig at New York’s Brooklyn Bowl. The last-minute date was announced last Wednesday and sold out in record time. The Sunday night performance stretched into the early hours of Monday, January 21, the band’s official anniversary. Umphrey’s McGee’s first official show took place at South Bend, IN’s Bridget McGuire’s Filling Station on January 21, 1998.
The sextet offered a mixture of songs written at different points throughout their career during their first set. The set closed with an extended segue which began with an original number that actually pre-dates Umphrey’s McGee’s formation, “Hajimemashite,” and then, moved into “Blue Echo,” “Comma Later,” “Bright Lights, Big City,” Michal Jackson’s “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’” and the end of “Bright Lights, Big City.” The members of Umphrey’s McGee covered the Michael Jackson tune in 1998, but the song quickly fell out of rotation. They brought the song back in 2004 and, during a small show at Athens, GA’s Georgia Theatre, revived the cover in 2012. Frontman Brendan Bayliss also asked the crowd to give a shout out to his young son, who was watching his first Umphrey’s McGee show from home via a live webcast.
The band’s 15th anniversary truly kicked into gear during their second set. The band honored their more recent compositions first, opening with “Bridgeless,” “End of the Road” and “Wizard Burial Ground.” Then, they offered an original song that has been part of their setlists since 1998, “August.”
The band’s first-ever show opened with the original “Bob,” but in an ominous turn of events the power went out a few seconds into the number. Last night, Umphrey’s McGee recreated that opening sequence and played a bit of “Bob” for the first time since 2003—only to cut “Bob” short a few seconds into the tune. They continued the celebration with a cover of Toto’s “Africa,” a version of “The Triple Wide” that moved into the group’s debut cover of Modest Mouse’s “Tiny Cities Made of Ashes,” the second part of “The Triple Wide,” and a sandwich of the 1998 originals “All In Time” and “Dear Lord.”
At the end of the night, Umphrey’s McGee offered two encore segments. Their first portion opened with a cover of Beastie Boys’ “Groove Holmes”—another relic from 1998—and the 2004 song “Bridgeless.” Then, they returned with an appropriate cover of Steely Dan’s “Reelin’ in the Years.”
Here’s a look at last night’s setlist via Umphreys.com
Sunday, January 20, 2013, Brooklyn Bowl, Brooklyn, NY
Set 1: There’s No Crying In Mexico > Wife Soup, Spires > Room to Breathe, Anchor Drops, Hajimemashite -> Blue Echo > Comma Later -> Bright Lights, Big City -> Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’ > Bright Lights, Big City
E: Groove Holmes > Bridgeless
E2: Reelin’ in the Years
 aborted as “power cuts out”
 debut, Modest Mouse; sung over The Triple Wide jam
 with (Don’t Fear) The Reaper (Blue Oyster Cult) tease
Umphrey’s McGee have also extended their 15th anniversary tour. The band’s new leg of shows will come to a close with a 4/20 performance at Austin, TX’s Stubb’s on April 20.
Pre-sale begins Tuesday, January 22, at 12:00 pm CT through Umphrey’s Ticketing.
Here’s a look at Umphrey’s McGee’s new dates
April 11 Orlando, FL—The Plaza Live Theatre
April 12 Florida, FL—Jannus Live
April 13 Jacksonville Beach, FL—Freebird
April 17 Fayetteville, AR—George’s Majestic Lounge
April 18 Fayetteville, AR—George’s Majestic Lounge
April 19 Dallas, TX—House of Blues
April 20 Austin, TX—Stubb’s BBQ