9 comments on “Widespread Panic – 05/09/1997 – Chicago, IL

  1. My first Panic show ever! I mistakenly bumped into a member of the crowd, and we apologized to each other like we were best friends. Someone complimented my WXRT Dead Hour t-shirt. Then JB onstage with a baseball cap on backwards, Dave Schools hair blowing from his fan, stars on the ceiling, Blackmon on fiddle, who's Orange Blossom Special inspired the stage crew to square dance (see the EverdayCompanion book). All this certified that I need not feel hopeless that genuine music had gone with Jerry's recent death. I had found my new home! Thank you Panic! I will never forget this night!!!

  2. Like I said earlier to Isaac, the shows "surrounding" this one (May 3-9) are all SMOKIN'!!!! If you put a gun to my head and made me choose a favorite year of Panic to listen to, I would go with 1997. Sooooo many good shows, setlists, and recordings. One of MY FAVORITE sets occurred in 1997 at Mud Island in Memphis: Everyone should check out this show if they haven't already…

    07/19/97 Mud Island Amphitheater, Memphis, TN

    Don't get me wrong, the first set is very good, featuring my favorite versions of "LGDTB" and "The Last Straw", and damn good versions of "Holden" and "Pusherman" among all the other good stuff. But the second set, or "Disc 2/3" (LOL) was one of those early discs (B+P Baby!!!) that grabbed my legs and pulled me in.

    2: Tall Boy > Aunt Avis > Chilly Water, Jack, Rebirtha > Arleen > Drums** > (Slow) Porch Song > Contentment Blues On paper, it might seem good, but not great. But HOLY SHIT, it is pure gold. Whole band is on fire and the segues are AMAZING: Avis>Chilly, BADASS. Rebirtha>Arleen, AMAZING. The Holden>Pusherman from the first set was also an EXCELLENT segue.

    MANY of the "B+P's" I would do early on in my "Panic Career" were shows from '97. Probably because of the quality of the recordings, and probably because the shows kicked ass.

    Anyways, I'm going to stop ramblin' on about a totally different show than the one above (the bourbon is talking), which is a damn good one, but I urge all of the Panic community check out ALL of the shows from May 3rd through 9th plus the two Mud Island shows (7/18 and 7/19)

  3. Like I said in my previous post, a lot of the Panic discs that I obtained early on were from 97. I definitely echo Matt Freeman's comment: "Love this era of Panic", because it was a huge part of the catalyst that has made me the rabid Panic fan that I have. Ok, sorry again for the rambling. Bourbon is delicious.

  4. Lee Dabrowski Didn't catch my first live show until Pelham '99, but I have to totally agree about the '97 being the best year to listen to along with '01-early '02 (for obvious reasons). The night before is the best Chilly Water I've ever heard that I didn't hear live. Blackmon definitely added to the "flavor" and they were on fire that Spring anyway. I think '97 was so good because the band was evolving. They were taking a step to being the phenomenon they are today and have been for years. The first set NYE '97 helps show what I'm talking about. JB starts off by himself on stage and adds each musician as they came into the band with one of songs in which they are featured. I think the band new they were growing into a band that couldn't be ignored and that NYE was a night of reflection. The free show in Athens a few months later proved to them and the world that they weren't just a small touring band, anymore. The irony is that '98 – '99 are two of my least favorite years. I think that is because they were trying to evolve the new material they had recently released on "Til the Medicine Takes".

  5. Lee Dabrowski I should've continued to read before posting above. The night before contains the best Chilly I've ever heard. The minute 8 thru 9 maybe the best minute of Panic, EVER. Now, I am obviously joking because it would be impossible to determine the best minute in my Panic life. I can tell you the worst minute. It occurred on August 10, 2002. I also agree with your idea of the week of May 3-9. I dunno if that is what I'd pick, personally, but definitely can't go wrong with this week. Panic '97, 01-02(through Bonnaroo), and '11, the 25th anniversary year are my top three years. I dig '94, also.

Leave a Reply