Widespread Panic returned for a Saturday night special at The Orion Amphitheatre in Huntsville, Alabama. The band’s dedicated fanbase flocked from all over the country to spend Memorial Day Weekend with blue-collar royalty of the jam scene. If WSP played a show where a dart was thrown at a map of the United States, guaranteed, there would be a rowdy crowd ready to listen—ragged but ready. As is tradition, Panic brought their swampy fury to the deep South with scorching classics, blues covers, and uninterrupted jams.
Kicking the night off, Panic opened with a rowdy “Tall Boy” that left the audience “foaming at the mouth” before a rolling segue from Duane Trucks’ corner introduced a hell-fire eulogy, Bloodkin’s “Henry Parsons Died”. A ponderous “Wondering” set the table as Dave Schools fired up the grill for a Memorial Day Weekend cookout of “Ribs and Whiskey”. A saucy John Bell provided the tangy, bourbon glaze.
Widespread Panic- “Tall Boy”
To follow, a jaunty joyride through “Old Neighborhood” took a dark turn into a heavy-metal rendition of “Imitation Leather Shoes”. After a quick pause, JoJo injected a funky “Rebirtha” before a Black Sabbath “Zero to Hero” inspired transition led into an uplifting “I’m Not Alone”. To close out the first frame of almost entirely original compositions, Panic tumbled through “All Time Low” like a “barrel thrown from the top of a waterfall” before walking off stage.
Widespread Panic – “Rebirtha”
Upon returning from set break, Panic covered Buffalo Springfield’s “For What It’s Worth” before Dave Schools introduced the bass-heavy bombardment of “Stop-Go”. During the tune, WSP snuck in a tease of Grateful Dead’s “Fire on the Mountain”. Another tease emerged out of the transition, this time “Turn On Your Love Light” illuminated the path for Neil Young’s “Walk On”.
Widespread – “For What It’s Worth”
[Video: Fred Ramadan]
After a brief pause, the six-piece followed Schools’ lead to stroll through a serene “Walkin’ (For Your Love)” before grabbing the car keys and hitting the road for an extended pairing of “Driving Song” > “Surprise Valley” > “Driving Song” > “Surprise Valley”. Each member of the six-piece rock group took their moment in the sun leading the progression of melodies, and the band even allotted a sizable time to Duane Trucks and Sunny Ortiz to beat up on their respective drum kits.
Widespread Panic – “Walkin’ (For Your Love)”
Widespread Panic – “Surprise Valley” > “Drums” > “Jam”
[Video: Fred Ramadan]
Winding down the second set, JB growled a dirty performance of Murray McLaughlin’s “Honky Red” until Jimmy Herring took the reins to blaze the way through an interstellar “Pilgrims”. A closing “Postcard” gave the audience a chance to reciprocate WSP’s bawdy energy as JB voiced the thoughts of all, admitting, “This town is nuts! My kinda place. I never want to leave.”
Widespread Panic – “Pilgrims”
The Panics returned for Saturday night’s encore slot with a cover of Willie Dixon’s “Tail Dragger” before donning “Halloween Face” for only the 6th time ever. To close out the penultimate show in Huntsville, Panic covered Steve Ferguson’s “Flat Foot Flewzy” for an ecstatic “boogie on a Saturday night.”
Widespread Panic – “Flat Foot Floozy” (NRBQ)
[Video: Fred Ramadan]
After-parties and music were all around as people made the most of their long weekend. One more night ahead and with an extra recovery day on Monday means this Sunday show will likely be a raging continuation of last night’s debauchery.
Listen to a full recording of the Saturday night show via PanicStream.
Setlist [via PanicStream]: Widespread Panic | Orion Amphitheater | Huntsville, AL | 5/28/22
Set 1: Tall Boy > Henry Parsons Died (Bloodkin), Wondering, Ribs and Whiskey, Old Neighborhood, Imitation Leather Shoes, Rebirtha > Jam  > I’m Not Alone, All Time Low
Set 2: For What It’s Worth (Buffalo Springfield), Stop-Go  > Walk On , Walkin’ (For Your Love) (Neil Young) > Jam > Driving Song > Surprise Valley > Drums > Jam > Driving Song > Surprise Valley, Honky Red (Murray McLauchlan), Pilgrims, Postcard
Encore: Tail Dragger (Willie Dixon), Halloween Face, Flat Foot Flewzy (NRBQ)
 ‘Zero the Hero’ jam (Black Sabbath)
 With “Fire On The Mountain” tease
 ‘Turn On Your Love Light” tease