Widespread Panic Reacts To Fan Death
Jam band Widespread Panic today (April 30) released a statement expressing its sympathy for the fan who died during the band's performance Saturday night in Pelham, Ala.Jam band Widespread Panic today (April 30) released a statement expressing its sympathy for the fan who died during the band's performance Saturday night in Pelham, Ala. As previously reported, Erica Robins Young of Chattanooga, Tenn., collapsed at approximately 10 p.m. during the concert, and died about an hour later of an apparent overdose of the drug Ecstasy.
"The band, management, and crew members of Widespread Panic send their deepest condolences to the family and friends of the young lady," the statement reads. "Throughout the 15 years the band has been performing, this is the first time we have encountered this type of incident."
Unrelated to Young's death, Alabama officials launched Operation Don't Panic, targeting fans attending the three outdoor Widespread shows at Pelham's Oak Mountain Amphitheatre over the weekend. Approximately 200 people were arrested during the undercover crackdown; about half were felony drug cases, while the rest involved misdemeanor drug and underage drinking charges.
"With full cooperation of concert promoters and local authorities, Widespread Panic makes every possible effort to ensure a safe environment for everyone attending a show," the band's statement continued. "Furthermore, we fully support the actions taken by local police to eliminate drug dealing and underage drinking at all Widespread Panic concerts."
"Thousands of fans attend Widespread Panic shows equipped with only an appreciation for the music, and respect for their fellow concert goers; this is the responsible type of behavior learned first in the home, and then carried into public, social situations. This is the environment in which Widespread Panic strives to play a positive role, and will continue to do so."
The weekend of concerts in Alabama marked the end of Widespread Panic's spring tour. A European tour slated for May was previously canceled "due to extenuating circumstances," according to the band's official Web site, and Widespread "hopes to reschedule this tour in the future."
The group will release a new concert album, "Live in the Classic City," June 11 via Sanctuary Records. Recorded across three April 2000 shows in Athens, Ga., the three-disc set will precede the start of the band's planned summer tour. That trek will kick off with June 21-22 headlining shows at the sold out Bonnaroo festival in Manchester, Tenn., and will wrap with a July 25-28 stand at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley, Calif., although it's probable that more shows will be added to the itinerary.