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Widespread Panic

One of the many neo-hippie jam bands inheriting the road-warrior mantle left behind by the Grateful Dead, Widespread Panic established a devout grassroots following on the strength of constant touring and a loose, rootsy brand of Southern rock informed by jazz and blues textures. The group's origins date to 1982, when vocalist John Bell and guitarist Mike Houser first began playing together while attending college in Athens, Georgia. When bassist Dave Schools left academia to join the duo the next year, Widespread Panic were officially born. The band recorded its debut single, "Coconut Image," in 1986; drummer Todd Nance joined soon after, followed by the addition of percussionist Domingo "Sunny" Ortiz and finally keyboardist John "JoJo" Hermann.

Widespread Panic released their energetic debut LP, Space Wrangler, in 1988 on the tiny Landslide label. After several years of relentless touring, they signed to major-label Capricorn, which issued the group's eponymously titled sophomore effort in 1991. Appearances on the 1992 and 1993 H.O.R.D.E. tours greatly expanded their fan base prior to 1993's Everyday, while 1994's Ain't Life Grand spawned the AOR hits "Airplane" and "Can't Get High." After teaming with fellow Georgian Vic Chesnutt to record 1995's Nine High a Pallet under the name Brute, Widespread Panic reconvened for the album Bombs and Butterflies, released in 1997. In the spring of 1998, the band released Light Fuse, Get Away, and 'Til the Medicine Takes followed a year later. Another Joyous Occasion (2000) and Don't Tell the Band (2001) marked the band's first albums of the new millennium. In June 2002, Widespread Panic returned to the road for their annual summer tour of the States, but within a month, founding member and lead guitarist Michael Houser had to bow out. Houser was battling cancer and returned home to Athens, Georgia to rest while guitarist George McConnell stepped in to finish the tour. On August 10, 2002, Houser succumbed to complications from pancreatic cancer at the age of 40.

Houser's wish was that the band would carry on after his passing, and with McConnell becoming a permanent replacement, Widespread Panic did just that. Their next full-length album, Ball, was released in April of 2003. Night of Joy and Über Cobra, both of which appeared in late March 2004, featured live selections from two of the band's shows at The House of Blues in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina while they toured in support of Ball. These marked Widespread Panic's second and third live efforts, follow-ups up to 2000's Another Joyous Occasion. They returned to the studio later that year for the Halloween-themed covers record Jackassolantern, and again in 2006 for Earth to America. Free Somehow, the band's tenth studio album (and first with newcomer guitarist Jimmy Herring), followed in early 2008, with Dirty Side Down appearing in 2010; it was followed by the in-concert set Live in the Classic City II in the fall. In 2012, the band released Wood, a double-live collection culled from the group's first ever all-acoustic tour.

The band never left the road for very long. In 2014, it was announced that drummer Nance needed time away from business as usual to deal with personal matters. Duane Trucks was enlisted to fill in during concerts. When WP eventually decided to record in a studio again, he filled the chair. With Keane as producer, the sextet entered Echo Mountain Studios in Asheville, North Carolina. For the first time in their 30-year career, WP recorded live in the studio. Performing new originals and choice covers -- including Alan Price's "Sell Sell," Murray McLauchlan's "Honky Red," and Willie Dixon's "Taildragger" -- Street Dogs was completed and slated for released in 2015. ~ Jason Ankeny
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Street Dogs

1. Sell Sell

2. Steven’s Cat

3. Cease Fire

4. Jamais Vu (The World Has Changed)

5. Angels Don’t Sing The Blues

6. Honky Red

7. The Poorhouse Of Positive Thinking

8. Welcome To My World

9. Tail Dragger

10. Street Dogs For Breakfast

x

Track List: Wood

Disc 1

1. The Ballad Of John & Yoko

2. Mercy

3. Imitation Leather Shoes

4. Clinic Cynic

5. Tall Boy

6. Many Rivers To Cross

7. Good Morning Little School Girl

8. Pickin' Up The Pieces

9. Ain't Life Grand

Disc 2

1. St. Louis

2. Time Waits

3. Sell Sell

4. Tail Dragger

5. Tickle The Truth

6. Fixin' To Die

7. Climb To Safety

8. Counting Train Cars

9. C Brown

10. Blight

11. End Of The Show

x

Track List: Live In Classic City II

Disc 1

1. Travelin' Light (Live)

2. Machine (Live)

3. Barstools And Dreamers (Live)

4. This Part Of Town (Live)

5. Sleeping Man (Live)

6. Radio Child (Live)

7. Imitation Leather Shoes (Live)

Disc 2

1. Disco (Live)

2. Rebirtha (Live)

3. Greta (From 'Live In The Classic City 2000')

4. E On A G (Live)

5. You'll Be Fine (Live)

6. Big Wooly Mammoth (Live)

7. Fishwater (Live)

8. Success Yourself (Live)

9. End Of The Show (Live)

x

Track List: Dirty Side Down

1. Saint-Ex

2. North

3. Dirty Side Down

4. This Cruel Thing

5. Visiting Day

6. Clinic Cynic

7. St. Louis

8. Shut Up And Drive

9. True To My Nature

10. When You Coming Home

11. Jaded Torist

12. Cotton Was King

x

Track List: Carbondale 2000

Disc 1

1. Let's Get Down To Business

2. Tall Boy

3. Rock

4. Jack

5. Stop Breakin' Down Blues

6. Party At Your Mama's House

7. Impossible

8. Genesis

9. Give

Disc 2

1. One Arm Steve

2. Walk On

3. Thought Sausage

4. Airplane

5. Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys

6. Drums

Disc 3

1. Drums And Bass

2. Maggot Brain

3. Chilly Water

4. Papa's Home

5. Ain't Life Grand

6. Let's Get The Show On The Road

7. Climb To Safety

x

Track List: Free Somehow

1. Boom Boom Boom

2. Walk On The Flood

3. Angels On High

4. Three Candles

5. Tickle The Truth

6. Free Somehow

7. Flicker

8. Dark Day Program

9. Her Dance Needs No Body

10. Already Fried

11. Up All Night

x

Track List: Earth To America

1. Second Skin

2. Goodpeople

3. From The Cradle

4. Solid Rock

5. Time Zones

6. When The Clowns Come Home

7. Ribs And Whiskey

8. Crazy

9. You Should Be Glad

10. May Your Glass Be Filled

x

Track List: Uber Cobra

1. Walk On

2. Wonderin' (Live)

4. Party At Your Mama's House

5. Nobody's Loss

6. City of Dreams

8. Expiration Day

9. Mercy

10. Imitation Leather Shoes (Live)

11. Can't Find My Way Home

12. Papa Johnny Road

x

Track List: Night Of Joy (Live)

x

Track List: Ball

1. Fishing

2. Thin Air (Smells Like Mississippi)

3. Tortured Artist

4. Papa Johnny Road

7. Don't Wanna Lose You

12. Time Waits

13. Travelin' Man

x

Track List: Don't Tell The Band

1. Little Lilly

2. Give

3. Imitation Leather Shoes

4. This Part Of Town

5. Sometimes

6. Thought Sausage

7. Down

9. Casa Del Grillo

10. Old Joe

11. Action Man

12. Don't Tell The Band

x

Track List: 'Til The Medicine Takes

1. Surprise Valley

2. Bear's Gone Fishin'

3. Climb To Safety

4. Blue Indian

5. The Waker

6. Party At Your Mama's House

7. Dyin' Man

8. You'll Be Fine

9. One Arm Steve

10. Christmas Katie

11. All Time Low

12. Nobody's Loss

x

Track List: Everyday

1. Pleas

2. Hatfield

3. Wondering

4. Papa's Home

5. Diner

6. Better Off

7. Pickin' Up The Pieces

8. Henry Parsons Died

9. Pilgrims

10. Postcard

11. Dream Song

x

Track List: Space Wrangler

1. Chilly Water

2. Travelin' Light

3. Space Wrangler

4. Coconut

5. The Take Out

6. Porch Song

7. Stop-Go

8. Driving Song

9. Holden Oversoul

10. Contentment Blues

11. Gomero Blanco

12. Heaven

x

Track List: Live In Nashville 5/4/2013

Disc 1

1. Give (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

2. Sharon (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

3. Bear's Gone Fishin' (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

4. C. Brown (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

5. Coach (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

6. Can't Get High (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

7. Cotton Was King (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

8. Last Straw (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

9. Tall Boy (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

10. Sewing Machine (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

Disc 2

1. Machine (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

2. Barstools And Dreamers (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

3. Airplane (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

4. Pusherman (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

Disc 3

1. Driving Song (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

2. Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

3. Driving Song (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

4. Big Wooly Mammoth (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

5. Chilly Water (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

6. Dream Song (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

7. Help Me Somebody (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

8. Henry Parsons Died (Live In Nashville 5/4/2013)

x

Track List: Steven's Cat (Single)

1. Steven’s Cat

x

Track List: The Essential

Disc 1

1. Travelin' Light

2. Chilly Water

3. Driving Song

4. Walkin' (For Your Love)

5. Love Tractor

6. C. Brown

7. Weight Of The World

8. Hatfield

9. Wondering

10. Papa's Home

11. Ain't Life Grand

12. Pleas

13. Fishwater

14. And It Stoned Me

Disc 2

1. Hope In A Hopeless World

2. Aunt Avis

3. Rebirtha

4. Climb To Safety

5. All Time Low

6. Cream Puff War

7. Surprise Valley

8. Disco (Live)

9. Tall Boy (Live)

10. Send Your Mind (Live)

11. Pigeons (Live)

12. Blue Indian (Live)

13. Pickin' Up The Pieces (Live)

14. Space Wrangler (Live)

Comments

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Widespread at the Fillmore in Detroit last night. Mind blowing. Can hardly believe it took me this long to find them. The jam band lives on well with WP!!!!!
Report as inappropriate
WSP totally rocked out the Wanee Fest last weekend in North Florida.
Awesome adventure!!!
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Wsp will always be a great band even after they stop recording.
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lauri.dahir
Love the 60's-70's vibe!
Report as inappropriate
Houser .
Is it.
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Wsmfp
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jscott429
I love Jimmy....but God I miss Mikey
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TRUE SPREAD HEADS NEVER KNOCK MICKEY!!! just an (FYI!!!!!)
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Wsp, next to the Greatful Dead they are the best touring band of all it.. I've done 336 and counting.. Let's get stoned, boys!!!!
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I go to a lot of there shows. I always have a great time. Awesome music.
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Best Band ever to just listen to and remember all the good times when I was younger. Both my kids love this band also.
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Tryin to steal from Bob Johnson is likta steal'in from the Devil Hisself!
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I have to agree with the Jimmy Fans. I never got to hear Mikey play live but I have Jimmy and he's phenomenal! Most recently had the pleasure of hearing him jam with his son Carter at Counter Point last month. Very cool.
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22 sleeps till Red Rocks!!!! Miss you JB!
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see all you boys& girls @ the rocks, "basking in the light" soo excited
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crofty98
Just ROCKED the Fox in OAK! Thank you Panic!
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Wide spread greatest jam band ever!¡!!!!
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I've said this for several years, but seeing Panic is number one on my music bucket list this year. Legendary jam band! Come east men!
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Who Stole My Fanny Pack!!!!!!
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Wat up spread hedz
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I will always miss and love Mikey. Jimmy is phenomenal! Porch Song
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asbiphone
WSP is the best!
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Jimmy Herring, although great, still sounds like a hired gun to me. Missing all of Housers subtle flavors. Apples/orang e s .
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Carbondale Smokes! Love LGTSOTR
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I have loved WSP since the beginning and have seen countless shows with every line up. Jimmy Herring is absolutely staggeringly awesome with WSP. The best song writing was with Houser...the best performing is happening right now with Jimmy!
Report as inappropriate
Saw them in Augusta at the Riverwalk and have to say it was one of the best shows I have ever seen. And then saw them again. What can I say? Love Grateful Dead but love to Panic too.
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And so is the band with him
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Jimmy is fuckn awesome! He's insane live. People are fd up
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I am sick of everybody constantly saying that Panic with Jimmy isnt good. Sure Mikey was amazing but this band still puts on the best show out there! See you all in Panic En La Playa!!! WSMFP!
Report as inappropriate
I must say Houser made the band who I remember than as. My favorite show is Augusta GA on the riverwalk in summer of 95 or 96 I think (you know what I mean). Great show with the brass ensemble.
Report as inappropriate
style involving the therapeutic use of psychedelics and empathogens. Often they embrace the diy life style, vegetarianis m , veganism, anarchism, communism. They will drop everything to help a friend in need, and often feel a sense of family within their community.

Their way of dress varies greatly, but you can usually spot them by their lack of care, and very loose comfortable clothing.

The neo-hippie can be found at clubs, raves, shows, protest, used book and thrift stores, and non corporat
Report as inappropriate
Funny. Neo-hippie made me grimace too, but after reading this I felt a little better. It's obviously not a self-given title, but I see how an outsider would say so. Not sure about anarchy and communism?? Panic rocks!

noun.
Neo-Hippie describes a merging of the ideals of hippie, rave, punk, slacker, and internet culture. Beliefs based on community and peaceful cooperation, outside of the mainstream. Strongly opinionated but open and accepting of others and differing opinions. Many prefer a life
Report as inappropriate
110 shows without Houser makes me want to cry.
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CHILLY WATER
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Don't know why it didn't post my whole comment
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Ever since my first show in 2002, I have seen them around 110 times, and every single show, I have had a blast. I think everyone should see Panic at least once in their life. Even if you aren't into their music, the atmosphere alone is about as good as it gets. Plus, even if its your first show and you aren't familiar with their song catalogue, there is a good chance that they will cover a song that you know. Another great thing about this band is how they have introduced me to other bands/m
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I'm a Georgia Native and have been listening for years, can't wait to see them at LOCKN!
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artbycourtne y d
2001 Oak Mountain...e n o u g h said
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Bring on Augusta. Wsmfp
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Chattanooga 3 days stoked. This will be show 26. Best show Halloween 3 day show Las Vegas
Report as inappropriate
rusted77
chilly water rain stay away this year please...... . .
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rusted77
Raleigh..... . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 days to go.......... . .
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I was just about to comment on that. LOL
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neo-hippie? LOL. Labeling them as such is a disservice.
Report as inappropriate
agreed on first bonnaroo. what a great time.
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worldwidehip p i e s
Miss You Mr Houser,First Bonnaroo Was Great.Red Rocks Is Always On Jam.
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Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest possible Friday by the love of your life. However if you don't read this you will die in two days. Now that you've started reading this don't stop. This is so scary. Put this on five songs in the next 143 min. when your done press F6 an your lovers name will pop up on your screen in big letters. Trust me it works.
Report as inappropriate
My wife's got the blues
Gonna bring her a kiss
Make those blues run
Report as inappropriate
Panic is awesome, at top of my bucket list to see in 2014. Chilly Water an incredible jam. Blend of instruments along with Bell's vocals put this band near the top.
Report as inappropriate
no mention of the self-titled album, thats the one that got me hooked, IM A ROCK ON MY BELLY LYIN IN THE BOTTOM OF A POOL, enough said...
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