Widespread Panic Tickets
Widespread Panic is a rock band that was formed in Athens, Georgia. The band formed in 1986 and have since then been a regular feature on the American rock music scene. There are currently six members in the band including John Bell, Dave Schools, Domingo S. Ortiz, John "JoJo" Hermann, Jimmy Herring, and Duane Trucks.
If you are a fan of Widespread Panic and would like to know more about the band, their history, their discography and how you can get the best Widespread Panic tickets to see them live in concert, continue reading.
About Widespread Panic
Widespread Panic is a rock band that was formed in 1986 in Athens, Georgia. There are six members presently in the band including lead singer and guitarist John Bell, bassist Dave Schools, drummer Duane Trucks, percussionist Domingo "Sunny" Ortiz, keyboardist John "JoJo" Hermann, and guitarist Jimmy Herring.
They are considered to be one of the most popular and influential American jam bands today. A jam band is essentially a musical group that performs long sets of music that crosses genre boundaries. These bands carry out extended live performances which feature musical improvisation, or jams, over rhythmic groves and guitar chord patterns.
The band has drawn inspiration from other Southern rock jam bands that came before them including The Allman Brothers Band. Their sound is best described as a mixture of blues-rock, funk, southern rock, hard rock, and progressive rock. Their musical style is often compared to other jam bands such as Phish and the Grateful Dead.
Widespread Panic is often referred to as ‘road warriors’ for their relentless touring and their high energy live performances. They are so well-renowned for their live performances that as of 2015, they hold the highest record for the number of sold out performances at two arenas: Philips Arena (Atlanta, Georgia) with 20 performances and Red Rocks Amphitheatre (Morrison, Colorado) with 51 performances.
The formation of Widespread Panic
Widespread Panic came together in 1981 when John Bell and Michael Houser met at the University of Georgia. For many years, the two had been playing guitar as separate solo acts and when they became friends, they decided to start playing together.
Their initial jam sessions went so well that the two decided to live together and collaborate on music. During that year, they wrote and composed songs such as ‘Chilly Water’ and ‘Driving Song’ which would one day become massive Widespread Panic hit singles.
By 1984, the duo had met Dave Schools who would become their bassist. Todd Nance was then brought on as the drummer in 1986.
The four man band played their first show together in 1986 at a charity event in Athens, Georgia. The name for the band was inspired by Houser’s panic attacks which he had suffered from for many years. That same year, the band also brought in Domingo S. Ortiz ("Sunny"), a percussionist from Texas, to perform with the band regularly.
In their early years as a band, they mostly played at small clubs, bars, and fraternities. In 1987, they signed a contract with Landslide Records and were getting geared up to start professionally recording music. One of the most significant events in their musical career came in February 1987 when the band performed a series of shows on Monday nights at the Uptown Lounge in Athens. There was a one dollar entrance fee to the shows and they were an instant success. This is when the local press began to take notice of the band and promote them. The one dollar shows have now reached a legendary status in the band’s history.
In the fall of that year, the band would release their first full length studio album, Space Wrangler. The album featured massive hits such as "Coconut," "Travelin' Light," "Porch Song," "Chilly Water," "Space Wrangler," "The Take Out," "Stop-Go" and "Driving Song.
After the release of this album, the band started touring extensively across the United States and then into Canada.
By 1991, the band was ready to sign with a bigger record label and chose Capricorn Records. Their first major label record was released that year and was called Widespread Panic (aka Mom's Kitchen).
To add to the band’s popularity, actor Billy Bob Thornton directed a movie about the band called Widespread Panic: Live from the Georgia Theatre, which showcased their critically acclaimed live performances in Athens, Georgia.
In the years that followed, the band continued to tour extensively and increased their fan base across the country.
Over the course of their career since 1986, Widespread Panic has released a number of albums. This includes 12 full length studio albums, 8 live albums, 5 archive albums, and one compilation album.
In total, their albums have sold upwards of 3 million copies across the United States.
Widespread Panic has come to be known for their dynamic, entertaining, and engaging live performances. They have committed to ensuring that no two live performances of theirs are alike.
In the DVD The Earth Will Swallow You, the band’s process for choosing their set list every night was explained. At the start of each tour, a member from the road crew of the band will put together a master list of all of their songs and laminate it. Before each night’s performance, that same crew member will mark the songs which were played on each of the last three performances. The band will then see which songs haven’t been performed and will put together their set list before the show.
The band does this ritual once before the first half of the show and then again before the second half of the show. This ensures that each performance is fresh and engaging for both the crowd and the band. Attending their concert live and in person is an experience and if you are looking for tickets, Widespread Panic tickets are now available here.