The greatest event of the year for fans of Widespread Panic rolled on for a second day at the Hard Rock Resort in Riviera Maya, Mexico yesterday. With unlimited frozen cocktails, thoughtfully arranged entrees at the half-dozen restaurants, and conveniently located snack bars scattered around the resort, the Good People soaked up more than sunshine as hours oozed by slowly, yet still too quickly.

In the middle of the afternoon, Grateful Shred jammed out on a setlist full of Grateful Dead covers. Despite power issues on stage, the patient fans that were sprawled out on beach chairs, chilling in power saver mode on floats, or waist deep in the water took the time to refill their Yetis and wait for the music to match the serene vibe of this cloudless, sunny day.

Some of the more responsible patrons sat down for dinner before the main event, others simply charged forward without looking back. There’s no wrong way to do this… as long as you are here. The stage lights were dimmed as Widespread Panic strutted on stage to an explosive round of applause from the courtyard.

Jumping right into the water without dipping their toes, Widespread Panic summoned a hellacious cover of Robert Johnson’s “Stop Breaking Down Blues” to open the second night. The saucy, backwards-cap-wearing frontman, John Bell, used his slide guitar and included a “Gimme Back My Wig” rap nice and early in the set. A second hard-hitting tribute to bluesman Junior Kimbrough, “Junior”, maintained the intensity and gave Jimmy Herring a chance to hypnotize some folks with his lightning guitar riffs.

A mellow “Blue Indian” warmed the audience’s hearts before the band segued into a monster cut of “You Got Yours”. Without stopping, Dave Schools steered into the Grateful Dead’s “Cream Puff War”. After a minute to catch their breath, the band negotiated a “Cease Fire” as a barrage of notes cascaded out of Herring’s guitar with the lethal force and consistency of a military helicopter’s mounted machine gun. Just like they appear on WSP’s most recent studio album, 2015’s Street Dogs, the music flowed into the trippy “Jamais Vu”.

Still without stopping, the drummers marched into a badass performance of “Rock”. Herring motioned to the crew offstage to “TURN JB UP!” by pointing to JB and then subsequently throwing a finger to the heavens. JB’s voice growled like a wolf stalking his prey and thrived in the glowing centerstage.

To end the first set, Panic waltzed through the jaunty rhythm of Jerry Joseph’s “North”. As the jam baton was passed back and forth between Jimmy Herring and JoJo Hermann, JB—with assistance from the passionate courtyard choir—jumped in to triumphantly exclaim, “You say that it’s stupid / I say that it’s cool / Haul you back to MEXICO / send you back to school!”

The band came out swinging for the second set as JoJo and JB exchanged verses on a breathtaking “Don’t Wanna Lose You”. Duane Trucks and Sunny Ortiz dropped the beat into the freshly dug grave of Bloodkin’s “Henry Parsons Died” before adding tour manager, Steve Lopez, to the team for a second Jerry Joseph cover. This time it was the reggae-infused jams of “Chainsaw City”, which featured lyrics of “a tired caballero,” “dining with Don Quixote,” and the appropriate repetition of “No bad vibes.”

For only the second time in the band’s long and storied history, WSP split “Up All Night” to include David Bromberg’s carnival ride “Sharon”. Insane, circus-style improvisation jams left heads spinning like trapeze artists when the band returned to finish the latter half of “Up All Night”.

Panic slowed it down to introduce “I’m Not Alone” before Herring and Schools accelerated the tempo, swerving into the frenzied chaos of “Tie Your Shoes”. The spiraling maelstrom rearranged its energy into a stomping cover of George Clinton and Funkadelic’s “Red Hot Mama”. The performance featured a unique intro with a slower groove through the first verse.

Still unfinished, Widespread transitioned into a soaring “Saint Ex” to complete the string of sequential heaters. With the clock inching closer to midnight, Panic spread their wings as a psychedelic “Pigeons” closed the second set in righteous fury and debauchery.

For the second night in a row, Widespread Panic played a solo cover as an encore. Last night, WSP burned through Black Sabbath’s “Fairies Wear Boots” as the courtyard descended for a rollercoaster ride through the ninth level of hell.

Swatting off the embers still singeing clothes, audience members doused the lingering flames with mojitos, margaritas, and an ungodly amount of tequila and beer as they migrated to the late-night stage for Doom Flamingo.

We’re past the halfway point and there’s no turning back. Keep pushing it, Goodpeople, next one’s gonna be the best one yet! Don’t forget to hydrate, you don’t want to look like a fish out of water come showtime. See you poolside, Schools’ side.

Scroll down for a collection of videos from the night as well as a gallery of photos courtesy of Dave Vann.

Widespread Panic – Hard Rock Resort – Riviera Maya, Mexico –  1/15/23 [Full Show Audio]

Widespread Panic – “Cream Puff War” (Grateful Dead) – 1/15/23

[Video: Michael Wilker]

Widespread Panic – “Sharon” (David Bromberg Band) – 1/15/23

[Video: Michael Wilker]

Widespread Panic – “Red Hot Mama” (Funkadelic) – 1/15/23

[Video: Michael Wilker]

Widespread Panic – “Fairies Wear Boots” (Black Sabbath) – 1/15/23

[Video: Michael Wilker]

Click to view more videos.

Setlist: Widespread Panic | Panic en la Playa | Hard Rock Resort | Riviera Maya, Mexico | 1/15/23 8:07 ET

Noche Dos

Set 1: Stop Breakin’ Down Blues (Robert Johnson), Junior (Junior Kimbrough), Blue Indian > You Got Yours > Cream Puff War (Grateful Dead), Cease Fire > Jamais Vu > Rock, North (Jerry Joseph) (71 mins)

Set 2: Don’t Wanna Lose You > Henry Parsons Died (BloodKin), Chainsaw City* (Little Women), Up All Night > Sharon (David Bromberg Band) > Jam > Up All Night, I’m Not Alone > Tie Your Shoes > Red Hot Mama (Funkadelic) > Saint Ex, Pigeons (88 mins)

Encore: Fairies Wear Boots (Black Sabbath) (10 mins)

* w/ Steve Lopez on percussion


– 2nd time ‘Up All Night’ has been split (2/02/16 Playa with ‘Solid Rock’)

– ‘Red Hot Mama’ with alternate intro through first verse