Thursday, September 4, 2008

A Couple Early(ish) Ween Shows (1991/1992)


The first time I saw Ween it was all the way back in 1985, about five years before their debut LP, "GodWeenSatan - The Oneness". It was at City Gardens in Trenton which looking back had an embarrassment of riches show-wise, back then. We would go several times a week and I won't get into all the bands that would play there as I think I did in a previous (Johnny Thunders) post. They were on the bottom of a bill headlined by Butthole Surfers. In between were Malcolm Tent and the awesome Cleft Palate. As my acid-addled memory of that night reveals (we usually did acid for the Buttholes, wisely or not) still as clear as yesterday, they were completely wild and blew me away. They must have been about 14. Deaner on guitar, Gener screeching screaming and squirming and some pal of theirs on backing tapes, lying on the drum riser with a microphone held up to the cheap cassette player, stopping starting and RW/FF'ing. Quite a site. And let me assure you their future greatness was evident, clear as day, and I told them as much.
They were local kids often seen at shows there, and after that show I remember heading to see The Cramps in my friend Tim's (R.I.P., buddy) school bus and stopping for gas on the way at the Mobil in New Hope. The bus was full of us miscreants at various stages of being extremely fucked-up on any number of substances and I can't recall which drug(s) I was on but I remember there was a keg in there and it was very smoky and Tim pops his head in the door while fueling and goes "Pete! Ween! Ween!". I hopped out to find Mickey filling the bus and telling us to please believe him The Cramps have cancelled (you can hear his tale of working at the Mobil on the excellent Working 4 the Man on Ween's 1992 "Pure Guava" LP). Of course we didn't/couldn't/wouldn't believe him and headed to the show anyway. Of course he was right and I don't remember what else happened that night cos well, you know...
Mickey still talks about this night when I run into him usually at shows these days.
Another slightly less outrageous but sublime tale is years later Tim (R.I.P., buddy) and I were at a later Buttholes show at the Troc in Philly. Tim had by then become pals with the Buttholes and we hadn't paid for a show in ages. We were hanging out with the band backstage, just Tim, me and the band. After a while someone else walked in; it was Mickey. We kinda looked up and said "Hey, Mick" and went back to our conversations and doing lines or whatever. Paul was a bit taken aback by our nonchalance and asked us "You guys not into Ween?" at which point Tim opens his jacket to reveal a massive Boognish collage t-shirt I made for him and says "Ween fucking rule, man". Also shows off his home-made Boognish tattoo...

As for these shows, I prefer the '91 Court Tavern show. It's rawer and wilder. The Wetlands show sounds much better, though both are ok. The Wetlands show was a pre-major label debut showcase at CMJ.
Court Tav is HERE,
Wetlands HERE.
Both highly recommended.

Tracks:
Court Tav:
01. The Wind
02. Bumblebee
03. Seconds
04. Cover It With Gas and Set It On Fire
05. Sketches of Winkle
06. Marble Tulip Juicy Tree
07. Tick
08. Weed Whore
09. Papa Zit
10. Boing
11. Fat Lenny
12. Cold and Wet
13. You Fucked Up
14. Tastes
15. Pork Roll Egg and Cheese (partial)

Wetlands:
01. Fat Lenny
02. Don't Get 2 Close (2 My Fantasy)
03. Puerto Rican Power
04. Cover It With Gas and Set It On Fire
05. Big Jilm
06. Sweet Texas Fire
07. The Goin' Gets Tough From the Getgo
08. Marble Tulip Juicy Tree
09. You Fucked Up
10. LMLYP
11. Freedom of '76
12. Pork Roll Egg and Cheese
13. Tick
14. Demon Sweat
15. Captain Fantasy

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