Spreadheads will be getting exactly what they have come to expect from this band of well-seasoned road warriors: a very unique musical journey that always drops its passengers off in a much better place than where they departed from.
Recently celebrating their 25th anniversary in 2011, Widespread Panic have been grooving and jamming together since way back in 1986, several years before the term “jam band” even became an officially coined musical genre. Cut from essentially the same fabric that created bands like the Allman Brothers and the Black Crowes, they’ve developed their own highly-addictive brand of southern-fried, bluesy, funky swamp rock. This has earned them millions of fans as well as the well-deserved status of being one of the world’s highest grossing touring acts.
The sextet, based in Athens, Georgia, has always had its heart and soul in the right place. Over the years they’ve found numerous generous ways to put their bountiful monetary wealth to humanitarian and charitable use. Some of their charities include the founding of “Tunes For Tots,” an annual event that supports public school music programs. They purchased a house in New Orleans’ 9th ward after Katrina as well as hold local food drives at many of their shows. The band also contributes heavily to the ongoing preservation of one of this country’s finest and most beautiful outdoor concert venues, Red Rocks Ampitheater in Denver. Widespread Panic holds the record for the most sold-out shows there—38 total—and in 2008, Denver’s very cool mayor proclaimed a date in June to be annual “Widespread Panic Day.”
Another city that Widespread Panic has a special relationship with is St. Louis. One of the songs on their most recent studio release, 2010’s Dirty Side Down, is a free-flowing instrumental piece entitled “St. Louis Jam.” This song has been a regular part of their live shows for many years.
The band chose to kick off its upcoming 13 date spring tour here in St. Louis, returning to downtown’s newest venue, the two-year old Peabody Opera House, for the second time. What makes this appearance extra special, besides it being the tour’s opener, is that for the first time Widespread Panic will be gracing our city for two consecutive dates.
Following their fifteen year tradition, there will be no opening act on this tour. Spreadheads will be getting exactly what they have come to expect from this band of well-seasoned road warriors: a very unique musical journey that always drops its passengers off in a much better place than where they departed from | Michele Ulsohn
Widespread Panic will play the Peabody Opera House at 1400 Market Street on April 9th and 10th at 7:30 each night.
Tickets are $39.50 and $46.50