The setlist included many of my personal favorites including You Fucked Up, Waving My Dick in the Wind, Your Party, Even if You Don't, Buckingham Green, and Ocean Man. There were crowd favorites as well, like Voodoo Lady and Mister, Could You Please Help My Pony, all songs I love as well but apparently not alone - the crowd was going wild.
If you're not aware of the band Ween, that's alright. I'll forgive you. Although they've been around since nearly the dawn of mankind (yeah. The 80's), they've really only charted once with a seriously silly song called 'Push the Little Daisies (and make 'em come up)' that showed up late one night on an episode of Beavis and Butthead. That was in 1992, still nearly 5 years before they first played and open for The Butthole Surfers. Ween was compared to artists like Frank Zappa, but even that was a reach. Ween was and continues to be a band that defies comparison and labels. For instance, after years of releasing their albums on tape backed by old DAT tapes often giving them a haunting, low-fi sound, they were signed to Elektra records. After scoring a few minor 'hits' on their album Chocolate and Cheese (as well as a cameo in the wretched film 'It's Pat' in which they are the only 5 minutes of film worth keeping), they used the money and their new-found power to hire a professional bluegrass/country band to record 12 Golden Country Classics, a record which in fact contains only 10 songs. If you haven't heard Ween, you're doing yourself a grave disservice. Depending upon your taste in music, there are several good songs that might appeal to your specific tastes. If you're into harder music, check out 'You Fucked Up' and 'Buckingham Green', where as if you're into more serious, pop-esk music, see 'Sarah', 'It's Gunna Be Alright', and 'Even If You Don't'. As for just plain catchy songs, seek out 'Voodoo Lady', 'Falling Out', and 'Your Party'. Also, it's generally agreed upon by fans and critics - the entire The Mollusk album is capable of impregnating women from a range of 200 yards, such is it's power. I personally feel Chocolate and Cheese will blow your mind right out the back of your skull. Be careful. Once you hear the right Ween song, the wall cracks and it's only a matter of time before you're incessently humming 'Mister, Would You Please Help My Pony?'.
The Meat Puppets actually went on first at 8 and most of the scattered few people who were there sat about 20 feet away from the stage. The Meat Puppets deserve respect for the chances they take with their music, the sheer tenacity as musicians, and their dedication to their craft. However, I'm not a huge fan, so Tara, my wife, and I just hung back. Nearing the end of their set, I realized that the venue was starting to fill and that people were starting to stand up and make their way to the partition that keeps Dean and Gene Ween safe from drunk hippies and acid-drenched fans. Luckily, my wife isn't just beautiful - she's aggressive as hell, and although there was only about two layers of fans (ie; two people between us and the partition) blocking the best view we could get, it only took a few moments for Tara to weasel her way to the front, then, with her knowing smile, she made space for me and before I knew it, I was within just a few feet from the boys. There we stayed right through the end, enthusiastically screaming along with all the songs.
Waving My Dick in the Wind
Take Me Away
Bananas and Blow
With My Own Bare Hands
Learning to Love
Even If You Don't
Mister Would You Please Help My Pony
Woman and Man
She Wanted to Leave
I Don't Want It
Touch My Tooter
You Fucked Up
Piss Up a Rope
Don't Squeal On the Pusher
The only thing I noticed that was sort of disappointing was that the band really didn't talk much. Perhaps that was out of consideration for people who really wanted to hear as many Ween songs as humanely possible, but as a great lover of their live albums, I expected some witty, fucked up banter between the Ween boys. Mostly though, they would just yell out 'We're Ween!' or the name of the next song. Gene, lead singer and all around Captain Awesome, did most of the talking while Dean, lead guitarist, backing vocals, and lead singer for songs like 'Piss Up a Rope', shuffled around barefoot on a piece of carpet that had been laid out on the stage for him before the show. I thought that was pretty cool and rubbed me good right in the weird spot.
So yes, my only complain isn't a complaint at all really. I wanted them to talk because I knew they'd be hilarious, but if the trade out was less talking for a 30+ song barrage, I'm ok with that. Some songs, like Voodoo Lady and Pandy Fackler, had long solos that showed off the chops of drummer Claude Coleman (aka Jimmy Ween) and keyboardist Glenn McClelland... really, everyone in the band noodled away technically at some point, but it was always entrancing, jaw-dropping. I swear I'm not biased just because I loved the band already. Also cool; after the show, we went back to our hotel (Hotel Monte Vista) where my wife and I were staying in a possibly haunted room, room 210. After freshening up, we went downstairs to the bar near the lobby. Lo and behold, Jimmy Ween was in the house kicking it with a small group of friends. Rumor spread quickly through the bar that it was Jimmy's birthday. I had brought along a few record sleeves to get signed, but I didn't want to bother the guy for autographs on his birthday. I did, however, walk over, shake his hand, and congratulate him on a great show.
Deaner rocks it out. You can't see it, but he's barefoot the whole show.
Without further ado, the videos.
Mister, Would You Please Help My Pony?
Waving My Dick in the Wind