Atlanta Philips To Honor Widespread Panic

Philips Arena to Raise Permanent Banner Recognizing
15 Consecutive Sellouts by Music Band Widespread Panic

Arena rings in New Year with annual sold-out
Widespread performances Dec. 30 and 31st

ATLANTA (Dec. 28, 2006) -- Atlanta’s premier sports and entertainment venue, Philips Arena, will raise a permanent banner to the arena rafters this weekend in honor of Athens-based rock band Widespread Panic’s expected 15th consecutive sold-out concert at the venue dating back to 1999. The banner will be raised during to the group’s annual sold-out performance on Sunday Dec. 31 at approximately 11:30 p.m., by Philips Arena President Bob Williams.

“Widespread Panic’s 15 consecutive sellouts at Philips Arena over an eight year span is a remarkable feat,” said Philips Arena President Bob Williams. “We are honored to be Widespread Panic’s favorite venue to perform in as their high-energy performances and passionate crowds set the stage for unforgettable experiences. Philips Arena is proud to share this first ever honor with the band and Panic fans worldwide. We are grateful Ted Mankin and Peter Conlon of LiveNation, Buck Williams of Progressive Global Agency and Sam Lanier of Browncat Management for collaborating with us to achieve this unprecedented accomplishment.”

Congratulations to the Boys!


ROXY THEATRE - 12-29-06
Set 1 -
Space Wrangler > Stop Breaking Down Blues, Old Neighborhood > Henry Parsons Died, Crazy > Tie Your Shoes > Mercy > Holden Oversoul > Travelin Lite
Set 2 -
Stop Go > Don't Wanna Lose you, Chainsaw City, Time Waits, Party At Your Mammas > Rebirtha > Greta > Hatfield > Tall Boy
Encore - Morning Dew

WP took the stage friday night to help raise money for the Tunes For Tots charity at the Roxy Theatre, Atlanta, GA. The sold-out concert's proceeds will help provide much needed musical instruments to school children.


Widespread Panic, of course, will perform Saturday and Sunday, New Year's Eve at the Philips Arena in Atlanta.


Widespread Panic NYE VIP package - Auction Update

12/26 UPDATE:

Widespread Panic had
donated 2 VIP tickets to the American Heart Association for their New Year's Eve concert in Atlanta. Ebayer's had untill Dec 21st to bid on these fine seats and backstage passes.

The auction ended 12/21 with 26 bids and the winning bidder walked away with 2 VIP Tickets and backstage passes for $1425.00.


Image of the Day - Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays


JB's message on Hannah's Buddies Event

Hannah Elliott and John Bell

A message from John Bell reprinted from the WSP Newsletter:

Hello Buddies,

As most of you know, the 8th annual Hannah’s Buddies charity event is set for Saturday, January 20th of 2007, in Orlando . Yea! As in the recent past, we’ll have the golf event (scramble format) at the Hyatt Grand Cypress Resort, followed by a silent auction and musical extravaganza at the House of Blues that same evening. Performing this year will be the irresistible “Nickle,” Sam Holt and John Bell (me), Outformation, and Col. Bruce Hampton & The Aquarium Rescue Unit. Yea!

Among the items to be auctioned this year are guitars signed by Widespread Panic, Warren Haynes, and Dave Mathews; Front row seats to the Special Surprise Panic shows this Spring; a guided fishing trip in Alaska , along with lots of other cool items generously sent in by you, the Buddies.

In order to present your donations properly at auction time, we ask you to include a description, monetary value, and suggested initial bidding price of the items you send to us. The sooner we receive your auction items (at the address below), the more successful the process will be on the day of the event; day-of-show arrivals tend not to get the attention they deserve. To make the process even more hassle free, House of Blues will provide shipping for the auction winners and their loot.

On a serious, but positive note, the Champion of this charity event, Hannah Elliott, has returned home and is mending well after successful spinal fusion surgery to treat scoliosis - an unfortunate part of the Spinal Muscular Atrophy package. Hannah and her Family have been incredible examples of strength and grace since forever. Your participation and support of Hannah’s Buddies year after year has been a wonderful presence in their ongoing fight against SMA; In return, the Eliotts and other Families in similar situations have been a powerful presence in all our lives as well. Hannah has been back to school a handful of times since the surgery, and I’m sure she’ll be in Orlando on the big day to party with everyone. Everyday is a big day. If anyone would like to send Hannah a note of Love and support, that would be downright neighborly!

Your Buddy, JB

The 8th Annual Hannah's Buddies Charity Classic and John Bell and Friends Benefit Bash are set for January 20, 2007 in Orlando.
The golf tournament returns to the Grand Cypress Resort and then it is off to a dinner and silent auction at the House of Blues for the golfers and their guests. The JB and Friends bash at the House of Blues is open to the public and begins at 8:00 p.m. The lineup for the HOB is set. John Bell will be joined by Col. Bruce Hampton & the Aquarium Rescue Unit, Outformation and Michael Nichol.

For complete information visit the Fight SMA website


Surviving on Loyal Fans

A business lesson learned from touring bands

Most metropolitan areas sport a wide array of bands that eke out a reasonable living by touring about the nearby countryside. At every stop, they get a bit of cash from the till, sell a handful of t-shirts and maybe even an album or two. If they are good, they build up a sizable population of groupies that worships the ground they walk on and follows them from show to show.

Very few people outside of the circle of fans know who these bands are. Yet the moderately successful bands make enough to get by and a few even manage to prosper. These bands do not sell a product like their mass market Brittany Spears brethren. Instead, they survive by providing a service to their devoted fan base.

A touring band cannot rely on selling millions of copies at $17.95 a pop to anonymous music fans across the nation. Instead, they make their money by selling a wider range of goods and services to a narrow group of fans. There are really only two ways of creating a reasonable revenue stream. You can get a little bit of money from a large number of people. Or you can get a lot of money from a relatively small number of people.

Touring bands aim for the later. They build a brand based off a powerful social experience and establish a strong relationship with their customers. They then leverage this brand to encourage the sale of merchandise, event tickets and more. The result is a strong lasting brand and high per customer revenue.

There is a classic business case taught in most MBA entrepreneur classes that examines the 30-year reign of Grateful Dead. Even though they allowed free taping of their concerts and capped their ticket prices, they remain to this day one of the top grossing bands of all time. They bucked the trend of selling records through the corporate food chain and instead provided music directly to their fans.

Touring bands, like Widespread Panic, provide a service and not a packaged good. They sell to a dedicated fan base that despite being small provides enough additional revenue to make the venture profitable.

Hundreds of bands have tried to make a living touring their local cities, playing gigs and selling t-shirts. Most fail, but a few succeed because it is a real business model that provides a solid service to fans of live music. It is a hard life, but you are your own person and you get to do something that you love.


Dave Schools in a "bah-humbug mood"

18th Annual Warren Haynes Christmas Jam :: 12.16.06
Asheville Civic Center, Asheville, NC

Tickets for this year's event sold out at a record pace.
Ten (10) pairs of tickets were auctioned off at the Gov't Mule Auction website.
The highest price paid was $270.00 for the pair.

X-Mas Jam-Asheville Civic Center
Set 1
Cortez The Killer with Dave Matthews
All Along The Watchtower with Dave Matthews & Branford Marsalis
Reggae Soulshine with Branford Marsalis
Brand New Angel
Unring The Bell
Leaving Trunk with Taj Mahal & Branford Marsalis
Sco-Mule with Dave Schools & Randall Bramlett
Mule with Dave Schools & Randall Bramlett

Sugaree with Brandon Bayliss, Marty Stuart & Taylor Hicks
I Shall Be Released with Marty Stuart, Kevn Kinney, Taylor Hicks, Mike Barnes, Ivan Neville, Brandon Bayliss, Mickey Raphael & Robert Kearns

Christmas Jam Rocks On
by Michael Flynn
published by the CITIZEN-TIMES Ashville

The New Orleans Social Club are bringing their bayou funk to the stage at the Warren Haynes Christmas Jam, as the concert rocks on at the Civic Center.

First time performer Dave Matthews, whose presence helped trigger a run on tickets this year, said he has drawn inspiration from many of the performers.

“I love being around this many great people,” he said. “I have been wanting to come to the Christmas Jam for years. I am a great friend of Warren’s.”

Earlier, Marty Stuart led his Fabulous Superlatives through electric mandolin jams and gospel harmonies, before Haynes joined in for some slide guitar work on “The Shape I’m In.”

Asheville’s Chris Ware, who snagged a ticket earlier today, said he was surprised by Stuart’s set. “I didn’t think I would enjoy it, but I did,” he said.

Regular Jam participant Dave Schools, bassist for Widespread Panic, said he enjoys the musical collectivism and holiday spirit of the concert.

“I’m always lucky enough to find a niche to play in,” he said. “I’m always in a bah-humbug mood until I get here. It transforms me into the spirit of Christmas.”


Ebay Auction: VIP tix to WP on NYE for good cause

It seems that Widespread Panic is in the Christmas giving mood this season.

They've donated 2 VIP tickets to the American Heart Association for their New Year's Eve concert in Atlanta.

You have until Dec 21st to bid on these fine seats and backstage passes.

Ebay Auction

Good luck!


BEFORE THE MUSIC DIES - DVD & Upcoming screenings

The Future of American Music Hangs In the Balance

Never have so few companies controlled so much of the music played on the radio and for sale at retail stores. At the same time, there are more bands and more ways to discover their music than ever. Music seems to have split in two - the homogenous corporate product that is spoonfed to consumers and the diverse independent music that finds devoted fans online and at clubs across the country.

BEFORE THE MUSIC DIES tells the story of American music at this precarious moment. Filmmakers Andrew Shapter and Joel Rasmussen traveled the country, hoping to understand why mainstream music seems so packaged and repetitive, and whether corporations really had the power to silence musical innovation. The answers they found on this journey–ultimately, the promise that the future holds–are what makes BEFORE THE MUSIC DIES both riveting and exhilarating.

At the heart of BEFORE THE MUSIC DIES are interviews with musicians, industry insiders, music critics, and fans that reveal how music has reached this moment of truth. Featured performances from a truly diverse group of artists, ranging from The Dave Matthews Band and Erykah Badu to Seattle street performers and Mississippi gospel singers show us that great music is always out there… as long as you know where to look. BEFORE THE MUSIC DIES will renew your passion for great music, and inspire you to play an active part in its future.

The Dave Matthews Band
Erykah Badu
Doyle Bramhall II
Elvis Costello
Bonnie Raitt
Widespread Panic
Eric Clapton
My Morning Jacket
Branford Marsalis
North Mississippi Allstars
Guy Forsyth
David Hidalgo
Les Paul
Michael Penn
Billy Preston
Kacy Crowley
Ephraim Owens
Steve Poltz
Hubert Sumlin
Nora Jean Bruso
Correo Aereo

Buy the Limited Edition DVD

  • Documentary
  • DVD Synopsis:

    With outstanding performances and revealing interviews Before the Music Dies takes a critical look at the homogenization of popular music with commentary by some of the industry's biggest talents like Eric Clapton, Dave Matthews, Elvis Costello, Erykah Badu, Branford Marsalis, Bonnie Raitt and more. Using historic footage the film looks at the evolution of American music and the artists who created it and pulls back the curtain (in a very creative way) to expose the sad truth behind today's "artificial" music stars. "The reality is that superficiality is in," says Marsalis. "And depth and quality is kind of out." Inspired by the death of his brother, director Andrew Shapter and his crew traveled thousands of miles, visiting dozens of cities, speaking with hundreds of fans, journalists, record executives and musicians while searching for "real" American music. What they found were mega-talents without a major label, including one artist Eric Clapton believes is "the real thing."


Fri Dec 1

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Sat Dec 9

Mon Dec 11

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Sun Dec 17

Mon Dec 18

Tue Dec 19

Wed Dec 20

Wed Dec 27

Sun Jan 7

Tue Feb 6


Golfers, JB lovers and Philanthropists Unite

8th Annual Hannah’s Buddies Charity Classic
Helping tens of thousands of kids fight Spinal Muscular Atrophy

The 8th Annual Hannah's Buddies Charity Classic and John Bell and Friends Benefit Bash are set for January 20, 2007 in Orlando. The golf tournament returns to the Grand Cypress Resort and then it is off to a dinner and silent auction at the House of Blues for the golfers and their guests.

John Bell and Friends Benefit Bash at the House of Blues in Orlando is open to all and includes,
special guests - Col. Bruce Hampton and the Aquarium Rescue Unit

Doors: 8:00pm
Tickets: $39.50 adv / dos
On Sale: December 13, 2007 10am.
*HoB box-office walkups may purchased Tickets at face value $39.50 cash only.

Tickets for the show go on sale December 13th at

Click here for more information on the golf tournament and to register.


Birthday Wishes for DAS

On Monday December 11 bassist David Schools turns 42.
Happy Birthday DAS and many more!


daveFM Auction results

For three days the 92.9 dave fm’s Call to Auction was for sale and apparently was a great success. Some of the songs that were requested were everything from Justin Timberlake and Louis Armstrong, through Bon Jovi and Gladys Knight, all the way through Phish and Widespread Panic.

Sponsors and contributors to the auction inlcuded The Who, Dave Matthews, Damien Marley, Jack Johnson, Phil Lesh, Barenaked Ladies, Guster, Widespread Panic, Trey Anastasio, Death Cab for Cutie, Jamie Cullum, Tom Petty, the Pretenders, the Black Crowes, the Atlanta
Falcons, Walmart, the Sunday Paper, and of course all those callers who participated in the 3 day event. Proceeds from the Call to Auction event goes to support Atlanta Habitat for Humanity. This weekends event brought in over $100,000.
Three Widespread Panic Autographed electric guitars were auctioned. Closing bids were $2900, $3300 and $3350.
Each guitar will be signed during Widespread Panic's performance at the Phillips at the end of the month.

A Widespread Panic Fan Package was also auctioned which included: Large Widespread Panic Poster- Framed, celebrating their 2006 show at the FOX Theater signed by JOHN BELL, DAVE SCHOOLS, JOJO HERMAN, TODD NANCE, SONNY ORTIZ, JOHN KEANE, and JIMMY HERRING.
An autographed copy of the vinyl LP “EARTH TO AMERICA”

a copy of the CD of “EARTH TO AMERICA” signed by the Band including George McConnell.
The package was sold for $700.


Atlanta daveFM Call to Auction

A Call to Auction is a radio benefit for Atlanta Habitat for Humanity. Every penny raised goes to directly to Atlanta Habitat.
Beginning Thursday at 9am, the phone lines at the 92.9 daveFM radio station will be manned and opened to accept your requests and donations.


These items will be placed up for bid starting at 9am Thursday December 7th and cease at 10pm on Saturday December 9th.


Widespread Opens for The Who? UPDATE

When the
Long Beach Press-Telegram or more notably writer Tim Grobaty ( announced that Widespread Panic would be the opening act for The Who on Feb 26 the WP online community became excited with the idea.

Their elation, however, was short lived when it was revealed that the Tragically Hip, a band from Canada, was schedueled as The Who's opening band.

According to the Tragically Hip website

95.5 KLOS Welcomes The Who with Special Guests The Tragically Hip
Monday February 26, 2007
Long Beach, Ca - Long Beach Arena

Tim Grobaty appologized in his 12/8 Press-Telegram column stating:

"Ever wonder how rumors get started? We start them, that's how. Because of some bizarre "brain problem" (we're not sure of the technical term, having only completed a few years of medical school), we announced Widespread Panic as the opening act for the Who's Feb. 26 concert at Long Beach Arena. The true openers are the Tragically Hip.

Our "official" reason for the screwup was our recent move from our second-story offices on Pine Avenue to our current aerie on the 14th floor of the Arco Center towers. We were, in other words, higher than we've ever been while writing a column. Sorry for causing all the excitement."


Widespread Opens for The Who?

The legendary English rock band who first came to prominence in the 1960s and grew to be considered one of the greatest rock 'n' roll bands of all time, The Who are on tour celebrating their 10th anniversary.

The Who have been on tour since June 2006 and plan to perform into 2007 and after over 40 years the band still brings an energy to the stage that is hard to match.

With so many songs like Magic Bus, My Generation and Won't Get Fooled Again, they helped redefine the very genre that they were a part of. Complete with Pete Townshend and vocalist Roger Daltrey the band is scheduled to play the Long Beach Arena - Long Beach Convention Center, CA on Mon, Feb 26, 2007 07:30 PM.

According to the Long Beach Press-Telegram the opening act will be Widespread Panic.

Tickets, ranging from $47 to $152, go on sale Monday at 10 a.m. at all Ticketmaster locations.


Jojo's Mardi Gras Band 07' Tour

Mardi Gras Band

JoJo formed the Mojo Mardi Gras Band shortly after his band, Widespread Panic, decided to take a year and a half off from their rigorous touring schedule.

The band made up of Max Abrams (Saxophone), Johnny Few (Bass), Hunter Williams (Percussion), Kevin Mabin (Drums), and keyboard player John “JoJo” Hermann creates a sound that keeps listeners dancing all night. Being regular players at many Middle Tennessee Churches, Johnny Few and Kevin Mabin offer a great deal of natural talent and soul to the group.
The band focuses on the sound of New Orleans that was pioneered by artists like Professor Longhair, Dr. John, and The Funky Meters, all of which were a huge part of JoJo’s musical background. JoJo and His MoJo Mardi Gras Band performed at festivals like Bonnaroo and Nashville River Stages and toured in Fall of 2004.

In capturing the quintessential sound of New Orleans, The Mojo Mardi Gras Band provides a night of dancing, partying, and great entertainment. Keep an eye out for occassional performances by this band.

JoJo's Mardi Gras Band Members:

John Hermann - Keys / Vocals
Johnny Few - Bass / Vocals
Kevin Mabin - Drums
Bill Elder - Guitar
Jonathan Jackson - Saxophone
Hunter Williams - Percussion


2/20/07 - Mercy Lounge
Nashville, TN
Tix: $13.00 Adv
On sale: 1/12/07
Available @
Doors: 8pm
Show: 9pm

2/23/07 - 8150 Club
Vail, CO
Opener: Mama's Cookin'
Tix: $20.00 Adv / DOS
Available @
On sale: 12/4/06
Doors: 9pm
Opener: Mama's Cookin' 10pm

2/24/07 - Cervante's Masterpiece
Denver, CO
Tix: $18.00 Adv / $20.00 DOS
Available @
On sale: 12/4/06
Doors: 8pm
Opener: Mama's Cookin' 9:30pm
On stage: 11pm

Check out JoJo's records at
Widespread Merchandise