Photo Credit: Wesley Hodges

On Friday and Saturday night, Widespread Panic performed at Live Oak Bank Pavilion at Riverfront Park in Wilmington, N.C. The pair of performances yielded special displays for the band’s Tar Heel State audience, who were treated to a run-through of the full alphabet over the two nights, sans a song that started with a “Z.” After “You Got Yours” the band played “I’m So Glad” separating the alphabetical lineup from the ensuing eight tunes which spelled out “TUFF SHIT” to acknowledge that they stopped one song short of the full alphabet, perhaps a homage to the unexpected and the nature of chaos that is the heart of rock-and-roll. Also included was a first-time performance of “Blue Carousel,” a song initially started by the late Michael Houser, completed by JoJo Hermann, and debuted by the keyboardist during a recent solo stand. 

The initial night on stage, Saturday, Sept. 15, got underway with “Stop Go,” followed by a cover of Chuck Berry’s “Let It Rock.” The jammers worked into “Greta,” which ran over into “Shut Up And Drive” and “Proving Ground.” After “Machine,” “Barstools and Dreamers,” and “Blackout Blues,” Widespread Panic landed on Warren Zevon’s original “Lawyers, Guns and Money,” which represented the final song of their initial set. 

Upon their return, Widespread Panic started off the night’s second half with “Airplane,” followed by “Blight” and “Can’t Get High.” The aforementioned happenings represented the start of a thematic choice by the band, with the already presented ABC arrangement. The band continued to work through the alphabet, adding “Disco,” “Entering a Black Hole Backwards,” and “Flat Foot Floozy.” With some covers already presented, the group kept it up with the addition of Tom Waits’ “Goin’ Out West.” 

Widespread added more tunes–working up to the letter “L,” with the second set finale being Neil Young’s “Last Dance.” After concluding their main frame, the band closed out their first night at Live Oak Bank Pavilion at Riverfront Park with “May Your Glass Be Filled” and “No Sugar Tonight / New Mother Nature.”

Continuing what they had started the night prior, Widespread picked up Saturday’s set with “One-Arm Steve,” which merged into “Pigeons.” “Quarter Tank Of Gasoline” was paired with  “Rebirtha” which ran over into “Space Wrangler.” As it became more apparent what the jammers were doing, it made sense to have “Thought Sausage” arrive before “Up All Night” and “Vacation.” As the alphabet dwindled, the band added fan favorite “Walkin’ (For Your Love)” to cap Saturday’s initial set.

After working through Saturday’s first frame, the Peach State natives performed “Saint Ex,” which filled the song choice that contained the letter X. “You Got Yours” represented the final alphabet pull, then playfully, Widespread spelled out a final message, instead of filling the slot for a tune which started with Z. After the Skip James penned “I’m So Glad,” something began to brew with the arrival of “Tackle Hero,” followed by a take on Bill Withers’ “Use Me.” They picked up “Fishing” and “Fishwater” prior to “Surprise Valley.” An ensuing “Henry Parsons Died” was met with “I’m Not Alone” and “Tall Boy” to cap the frame, at which point some noticed the first letters of select second set songs, spelled out: TUFF SHIT

For their encore, the band started out with a live debut of “Blue Carousel,” a song started by the late Michael Houser and finished by keyboardist JoJo Hermann, who debuted the number during a recent solo show. After, they picked up a take on Tom Petty’s “You Wreck Me” and the final song of their North Carolina stand: BloodKin’s “End of the Show.” The assemblage of the last three pieces spelled out BYE as a fitting message following two lively nights of music. 

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Widespread Panic 

Live Oak Bank Pavilion At Riverfront Park – Wilmington, N.C.

Sept. 15, 2023 

Set I: Stop Go > Let It Rock+ > Greta > Shut Up And Drive, Proving Ground, Machine > Barstools and Dreamers > Blackout Blues, Lawyers, Guns and Money

Set II: Airplane > Blight, Can’t Get High, Disco > Entering A Black Hole Backwards& > Flat Foot Flewzy > Goin’ Out West > Holden Oversoul > I Walk On Guilded Splinters > Jam > King Baby > Last Dance

Enc.: May Your Glass Be Filled,  No Sugar Tonight / New Mother Nature


+ Last time played, Aug. 26, 2022 (48 shows)
& Last time played, Oct. 22, 2021 (89 shows)
Set II and Encore with an Alphabet theme

Widespread Panic

Live Oak Bank Pavilion At Riverfront Park – Wilmington, N.C.

Sept. 16, 2023 

Set I: One-Arm Steve > Pigeons, Quarter Tank Of Gasoline > Rebirtha > Space Wrangler, Thought Sausage > Up All Night,  Vacation > Walkin’

Set II: Saint Ex > You Got Yours, I’m So Glad, Tackle Box Hero, Use Me, Fishin’ > Fishwater, Surprise Valley > Henry Parsons Died, I’m Not Alone > Tall Boy

Enc.: Blue Carousel+ > You Wreck Me, End Of The Show


+ Debut

The second set spelled out: TOUGH SHIT 

Encore spelled out: BYE