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Ween

Ween was the ultimate cosmic goof of the alternative rock era, a prodigiously talented and deliriously odd duo whose work traveled far beyond the constraints of parody and novelty into the heart of surrealist ecstasy. Despite a mastery for seemingly every mutation of the musical spectrum, the group refused to play it straight; in essence, Ween was bratty deconstructionists, kicking dirt on the pop world around them with demented glee. Along with the occasional frat-boy lapses into misogyny, racism, and homophobia, the band's razor-sharp satire cut to the inherently silly heart of rock & roll with hilariously acute savagery; fueled by psilocybin mushrooms and an all-consuming craving for hot meals, Ween created their own self-contained universe, a parallel dimension where the only sacred cow was their own demon god, the Boognish.

The duo formed in suburban New Hope, PA, in 1984, when 14-year-olds Mickey Melchiondo and Aaron Freeman adopted their respective fraternal aliases, Dean and Gene Ween, and cut the first of literally thousands of home recordings. At about the same time Freeman -- working under the name Synthetic Socks -- issued an eponymous 1987 solo cassette on the fledgling TeenBeat label, Ween released their own debut tape, The Crucial Squeegie Lip, on their own Bird O' Pray imprint. After a pair of 1988 self-releases, titled Axis: Bold as Boognish and The Live Brain Wedgie/WAD LP, Ween signed to the Minneapolis-based independent label Twin/Tone, which in 1990 issued the double album GodWeenSatan: The Oneness, a sprawling, often brilliant release which careened from the headlong hardcore rush of the opening "You F**ked Up" to the helium pop of "Don't Laugh I Love You" to the Prince-Xeroxed funk of "L.M.L.Y.P."

A move to the Shimmy Disc label followed prior to the release of 1991's The Pod, another masterpiece of dementia recorded on four-track under the influence of inhaled Scotchgard; darker and more deranged than its predecessor, The Pod expanded the Ween palette to include Beatlesque pop (the sublime "Pork Roll Egg and Cheese"), oddball folk ("Oh My Dear [Falling in Love]"), and mystic hard rock ("Captain Fantasy"). Against all odds, the record won the Weens a deal with major label Elektra; against even greater odds, the leap to the big leagues did nothing to alter the duo's mindset. 1992's Pure Guava, their Elektra debut, was their most consistently weird and wonderful outing to date. Highlighted by the disturbingly infectious single "Push th' Little Daisies" (a Top Ten hit in Australia), Pure Guava found the group as snarky as ever on self-explanatory workouts like "Reggaejunkiejew," "Hey Fat Boy (A**hole)," and "Flies on My Dick"; "Springtheme" mocked love songs at their queasiest; while the climactic "Don't Get 2 Close (2 My Fantasy)" distilled the overblown excesses of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" and Queensrÿche's "Silent Lucidity" into an epic art rock portrait of child molestation.

Dedicated to the late comedic actor John Candy, 1994's Chocolate and Cheese -- its title a perfect summation of the duo's blend of R&B and schlock -- upped the ante yet again. Widening the net to ensnare cowboy songs ("Drifter in the Dark"), Philly soul ("Freedom of '76"), Afro-Caribbean funk ("Voodoo Lady"), and Sergio Leone-inspired spaghetti Western epics ("Buenas Tardes Amigo"), Chocolate and Cheese also featured "Spinal Meningitis (Got Me Down)" and "Mister Would You Please Help My Pony," two of the creepiest tales of childhood trauma ever committed to vinyl. Having taken their anything-goes aesthetic to its logical extreme, Ween took a sharp left turn for 1996's 12 Golden Country Greats, a ten-track concept album recorded in Nashville with Music City session luminaries including the Jordanaires, Bobby Ogdin, Russ Hicks, Hargus "Pig" Robbins, and Charlie McCoy. While the song titles alone -- among them "Japanese Cowboy," "Mister Richard Smoker," and "Help Me Scrape the Mucus Off My Brain" -- served notice that the group's lyrical attitude had not altered one whit, the music was remarkably evocative of Nashville's golden era, and performed with skill and affection.

A tour with Ogdin and a backing unit dubbed the S**t Creek Boys (which included steel guitarist Stuart Basore, guitarist Danny Parks, fiddler Hank Singer, and bassist Matt Kohut) followed prior to the release of 1997's The Mollusk, a concise, mock-progressive semi-concept album that proved to be one of Ween's strongest efforts. The follow-up was a double-disc concert compilation, Paintin' the Town Brown: Ween Live '90-'98, issued in 1999. In the spring of 2000, the duo resurfaced with White Pepper, their first new studio effort in three years; it peaked at 121 on the Billboard charts, their highest placing to date.

In 2001, Ween began releasing a series of live albums through their Internet-based independent label, Chocodog. The first of these, Live in Toronto Canada, captured a show with the S**t Creek Boys. Around this time, the band and Elektra parted ways, and Ween was without a record label as they worked on their eighth studio album. After a wait of two years -- during which time they released another live album, the triple-disc Live at Stubb's -- they signed with Sanctuary Records in 2003, releasing Quebec in August of that year. It was the first Ween album to crack the Top 100, peaking at 81.

A few months after the release of Quebec, another independent live album followed (All Request Live), with additional retrospectives arriving in 2004 (Live in Chicago, a combination DVD/CD set) and 2005 (the rarities compilation Shinola, Vol. 1). Ween headed back into the studio to work on their ninth studio album, and the resulting La Cucaracha arrived in October 2007 (prefaced by the Friends EP earlier in the year). Recording activity began again in 2009, but nothing appeared forthcoming from the band. In 2012, Gene released a solo album -- a tribute to the songs of Rod McKuen called Marvelous Clouds -- under his given name of Aaron Freeman. Shortly after its release, he announced to Rolling Stone that the band had ended its run. ~ Jason Ankeny
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: At The Cat's Cradle, 1992

Disc 1

1. Big Jilm

2. Never Squeal On Th' Pusher

3. Captain Fantasy

4. Tick

5. Pork Roll Egg And Cheese

6. Cover It With Gas And Set It On Fire

7. The Goin' Gets Tough From The Getgo

8. Don't Get 2 Close (2 My Fantasy)

9. Nan

10. Marble Tulip Juicy Tree

11. Ode To Rene

12. Mango Woman

13. El Camino

14. Demon Sweat

15. You F**ked Up

16. Old Queen Cole

17. Papa Zit

18. Buckingham Green

19. Birthday Boy

20. Fat Lenny

21. Reggaejunkiejew

Disc 2
x

Track List: La Cucaracha

1. Fiesta

2. Blue Balloon

3. Friends

4. Object

5. Learnin' To Love

6. With My Own Bare Hands

7. The Fruit Man

8. Spirit Walker

9. Shamemaker

10. Sweetheart

11. Lullaby

12. Woman And Man

13. Your Party

x

Track List: Shinola, Vol. 1

1. Tastes Good On Th' Bun

2. Boys Club

3. I Fell In Love Today

4. Big Fat F**k

5. Gabrielle

6. Did You See Me?

7. How High Can You Fly

8. Transitions

9. Israel

10. The Rift

11. Monique The Freak

12. Someday

x

Track List: Quebec (Explicit)

1. It's Gonna Be A Long Night

2. Zoloft

3. Transdermal Celebration

4. Among His Tribe

5. So Many People In The Neighborhood

6. Tried And True

7. Happy Colored Marbles

8. Hey There Fancy Pants

9. Captain

10. Chocolate Town

11. I Don't Want It

12. The F**ked Jam

13. Alcan Road

14. The Argus

15. If You Could Save Yourself (You'd Save Us All)

x

Track List: White Pepper

1. Exactly Where I'm At

2. Flutes Of The Chi

3. Even If You Don't

4. Bananas And Blow

5. Stroker Ace

6. Ice Castles

7. Back To Basom

8. The Grobe

9. Pandy Fackler

10. Stay Forever

11. Falling Out

12. She's Your Baby

x

Track List: The Mollusk

1. I'm Dancing In The Show Tonight

2. The Mollusk

3. Polka Dot Tail

4. I'll Be Your Johnny On The Spot

5. Mutilated Lips

6. The Blarney Stone

7. It's Gonna Be (Alright)

8. The Golden Eel

9. Cold Blows The Wind

10. Pink Eye (On My Leg)

11. Waving My Dick In The Wind

12. Buckingham Green

13. Ocean Man

14. She Wanted To Leave

x

Track List: 12 Golden Country Greats (Explicit)

1. I'm Holding You

2. Japanese Cowboy

3. Piss Up A Rope

4. I Don't Want To Leave You On The Farm

5. Pretty Girl

6. Powder Blue

7. Mister Richard Smoker

8. Help Me Scrape The Mucus Off My Brain

9. You Were The Fool

10. Fluffy

x

Track List: Chocolate And Cheese

1. Take Me Away

2. Spinal Meningitis (Got Me Down)

3. Freedom Of '76

4. I Can't Put My Finger On It

5. A Tear For Eddie

6. Roses Are Free

7. Baby B**ch

8. Mister, Would You Please Help My Pony?

9. Drifter In The Dark

10. Voodoo Lady

11. Joppa Road

12. Candi

13. Buenas Tardes Amigo

14. The Hiv Song

15. What Deaner Was Talkin' About

16. Don't S**t Where You Eat

x

Track List: Pure Guava (Explicit)

1. Little Birdy

2. Tender Situation

3. The Stallion Pt. 3

4. Big Jilm

5. Push Th' Little Daisies

6. The Goin' Gets Tough From The Getgo

7. Reggaejunkiejew

8. I Play It Off Legit

9. Pumpin' 4 The Man

10. Sarah

11. Springtheme

12. Flies On My Dick

13. I Saw Gener Cryin' In His Sleep

14. Touch My Tooter

15. Mourning Glory

16. Loving U Thru It All

17. Hey Fat Boy (A**hole)

18. Don't Get 2 Close (2 My Fantasy)

19. Poop Ship Destroyer

x

Track List: The Pod (Explicit)

2. Dr. Rock

3. Frank

4. Sorry Charlie

5. The Stallion (Pt. 1)

6. Pollo Asado

7. Right To The Ways And The Rules Of The World

8. Captain Fantasy

9. Demon Sweat

10. Molly

11. Can U Taste The Waste

12. Don't Sweat It

13. Awesome Sound

14. Laura

15. Boing

16. Mononucleosis

17. Oh My Dear (Falling In Love)

18. Sketches Of Winkle

19. Alone

20. Moving Away

22. Pork Roll Egg And Cheese

23. The Stallion (Pt. 2)

x

Track List: God Ween Satan: The Oneness

1. You F**ked Up

2. Tick

3. I'm In The Mood To Move

4. I Gots A Weasel

5. Fat Lenny

6. Cold & Wet

7. Bumble Bee

9. Don't Laugh (I Love You)

10. Never Squeal

11. Up On The Hill

12. Wayne's Pet Youngin'

13. Nicole

14. Common B**ch

15. El Camino

16. Old Queen Cole

17. Stacey

18. Nan

19. Licking The Palm For Guava

20. Mushroom Festival In Hell

21. L.M.L.Y.P.

22. Papa Zit

23. Hippy Smell

24. Old Man Thunder

25. Birthday Boy

26. Blackjack

27. Squelch The Weasel

28. Marble Tulip Juicy Tree

29. Puffy Cloud

x

Track List: All Request Live

1. Happy Colored Marbles (Live Studio)

2. The Stallion Pt. 1 (Live Studio)

3. The Stallion Pt. 2 (Live Studio)

4. The Stallion Pt. 3 (Live Studio)

5. The Stallion Pt. 4 (Live Studio)

6. The Stallion Pt. 5 (Live Studio)

7. Demon Sweat (Live Studio)

8. Cover It With Gas And Set It On Fire (Live Studio)

9. Awesome Sound (Live Studio)

10. Cold Blows The Wind (Live Studio)

11. Pollo Asado (Live Studio)

12. Reggaejunkiejew (Live Studio)

13. Tried And True (Live Studio)

14. Mononucleosis (Live Studio)

15. Stay Forever (Live Studio)

16. Where'd The Cheese Go? (Live Studio)

x

Track List: The Friends EP

1. Friends

2. I Got To Put The Hammer Down

3. King Billy

4. Light Me Up

5. Slow Down Boy

Comments

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patrickpitts 7 1 9
Heard a tear for eddie while tripping on LSD in 1996. Been a fan ever since
Report as inappropriate
Some Chocolate and Cheese, if you please.
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Ween - top 10 fave for sure.
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; )
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"Bratty deconstructi o n i s t " dang pandora must be drinkin the hater-aid
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Saw them in 04' really fun awesome show, no one can compare!! Met them and they r very cool and down to earth.
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Yea there's no ween playing on the station. What the f**k.
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Dear Messer's Ween, I just started placing comments after about 5 years of listening to Pandora. I've been a fan of you guys since Pure Guava (or God Ween Satin, not sure) for many years. I love what you do. I respect you in the fact that you could have gone mainstream if you chose to, but have stayed true to your artistic offering. Keep doing what you do, because you are important to music.
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Faggots
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welcome back Denver was great
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well done Jason.
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My landscape would be empty without the comfort and reassurances given generously by the writing and magical musicianship of Ween! I pray that I get to meet them one day, I know we will be friends.
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Love the Live In Chicago album. Don't think these guys get the credit they deserve
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They have announced three shows in Colorado, one fest in Florida, and a couple shows in New York. Be on the lookout for more
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Weird dudes, good music!
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The brownest of all brown.
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Bananas and Blow
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dru62stloo
from the day i heard the pod i was weenified--- - - f a v o r i t e music----i.w . t . l . y . p . . . . . . . . . . . . . d r u . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
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dru62stloo
i'm 65 years in a word awesome
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chilldozer
They are one of my all time favorite bands and I never got to see them live... I hope someday they will reunite.
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Come back Ween! We need you!
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cymon.was
Ween my a** is more like the Beatles Primus and Modest Mouse wheres the ween songs
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Similar Artists... Yeah Right....
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Can't wait for ice cream man
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deaner keeping it going. 'ween minus gene' is a thing...
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You bring the razor blade...
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don't cry, Darren. they love you.
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one of my greatest regrets is that I never made it to see these guys live.....I will cry now
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one of my greatest regrets in life is that I never was able to get to see these guys in concert

I will cry now
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ItIs NOT gonna be alright.
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They truly stand alone. There's just nothing that comes close to their originality. GREATS!
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Recently discovered these guys. They scare me.
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Pretty good company in the Similar Artist list: Pixies
Beck
Pink Floyd
David Bowie
Talking Heads
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zybobbitt
One of the greatest groups in the history of awesome.
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Becoming one of my favorite songs by them. Reading last comment never heard of Cinderella or Cky?
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Holy crap, they're from the next town over. I didn't know anything good happened here in PA.
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Why you do this to me Ween?
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ween one my favorite bands ever seen play live many times will miss the live show but one day they get back together,hey if van Halen can do ot any band can peace I will pray to the boogniss that I will blessed to see them live again
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White pepper
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geriatricmis t r e s s
I saw them in Columbus Ohio. They played an encore, a 30-minute version of Let Me Lick Your P**sy. Awesome. Like 30 women all got onstage and danced. In all my years of going to shows, I've never seen more titties than at Ween. The power of Boognish ya know?
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geriatricmis t r e s s
No, Pure Guava
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I can't get enough of these guys.
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Pure Magic !
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So why does this feed play more Flaming Lips than Ween?
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redmash73
HEY!!! Ween New Album where is it? Love these guys. Love their videos. but who doesn't. great band but you knew that already.
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redmash73
HEY!!! Ween New Album where is it? Love these guys. Love their videos. but who doesn't. great band but you knew that already.
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redmash73
HEY!!! Ween New Album where is it? Love these guys. Love their videos. but who doesn't. great band but you knew that already.
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check out my band. We're called The Butthole B**ches. You can find us on the cover of Rolling Stone.
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Can't have enough boognish tattoos !!!! Best music ever made came from Ween!!! chocolate and cheese is the best album and transdermal celebration and too many more
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Love these guys!
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