Wilco, Widespread Panic, White Stripes Close Bonnaroo
Wilco, Widespread Panic and the White Stripes helped close Bonnaroo in grand fashion on Sunday (June 17) in Manchester, Tenn., a day which was marred by jazz legend Ornette Coleman's on-stage collapseWilco, Widespread Panic and the White Stripes helped close Bonnaroo in grand fashion on Sunday (June 17) in Manchester, Tenn., a day which was marred by jazz legend Ornette Coleman's on-stage collapse after suffering heat stroke. Bonnaroo veterans Widespread Panic headlined the main stage, mixing fan favorites such as "Chilly Water" and "Space Wrangler" with covers of John Lennon's "Crippled Inside" and Black Sabbath's "Fairies Wear Boots."
"Bonnaroo came off great right off the bat," singer/guitarist John Bell told media earlier in the day about why Widespread has become a fixture at the festival. "They've been able to avoid the trappings of corporate garbage that you tend to see at these things."
Wilco's main stage set coincided with sundown, providing a perfect sendoff for the thousands leaving the grounds early. The group jammed out nearly every song, particularly "Shot in the Arm," "Via Chicago" and "Handshake Drugs," highlighted by Nels Cline's explosive solos. Wilco also proved adept at translating the nuances of its newer, more mellow tracks, particularly opener "You Are My Face" and "Impossible Germany."
"We're having a really great time here," frontman Jeff Tweedy told the audience. "And that doesn't happen all the time, either. I usually hate these things!"
The White Stripes were next up on the Which Stage, and promptly ripped into rockers like "Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground," new single "Icky Thump" and "Hotel Yorba." Drummer Meg White took the mic for "In the Cold, Cold Night," and the duo saluted Nashville with its familiar cover of Dolly Parton's "Jolene."
As reported yesterday, Coleman was 45 minutes into a performance in the jazz tent when he collapsed. He was given fluids via IV and taken to a local hospital for observation, but has since been released.
Highlights of Sunday afternoon included singer/songwriter Elvis Perkins bringing up Clap Your Hands Say Yeah frontman Alec Ounsworth to play guitar on "Doomsday," and 80-year-old bluegrass legend Charlie Louvin treating the crowd at the Sonic Stage to Bill Anderson's "I Don't Love You Anymore" and Jimmie Rodgers' "Waiting for a Train."