Special Guest James Elkington
November 13, 2017
Photos by: Tony Vasquez
Review by: Belinda Vasquez
Photo Gallery: Wilco Gallery
The two-plus hour soldout concert at the Pageant in St. Louis ended with Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy telling the crowd “Be Safe. Don’t get discouraged.” The emotional charged set mostly likely had to do with Tweedy’s first time playing in St. Louis since Bob Tweedy, his father, passed in August.
Tweedy told the crowd of his father, “I know if he was here, he would want me to apologize to the people that are going to have to pay for their own beers tonight. I’m pretty sure he bought all of your beers every time.” The crowd immediately cheered for his dad.
The band notoriously known for their constant touring are wrapping up 2017 with a few more dates before taking most of 2018 off from the road. Both these factors contributed to the special vibe of the night.
The band opened the evening with the song “Cry All Day” from their 2016 release Schmilco. They played a few other tracks from the latest release but for most of the night they mixed material from their 20-year catalog while sprinkling in a few Uncle Tupelo tracks “New Madrid” and “We’ve Been Had.”
A truly special moment was how quiet the crowd got while the band performed the hauntingly beautiful “Reservations.” They immediately went into “Impossible Germany” which builds as the song progresses to showcase the bands full on guitar lineup with Nels Cline leading the charge with his finger-blistering guitar solo as Jeff Tweedy and Pat Sansone solo over John Stiratt’s bassline sending the crowd into loud approving cheers.
Chicago native Jim Elkington who opened the night with a solo acoustic set joined the band to play on “California Stars.” The band showcased the solo skills of Mikael Jorgensen on keys, Pat Sansone, and Jim on electric guitar.
To close the night the band performed two encores with a request from Tweedy for the crowd to sing along with “Jesus Etc.” Of course, the soldout crowd carried out his request.
Setlist: Cry All Day, I Am Trying to Break Your Heart, Art of Almost, Pickled Ginger, At Least That’s What You Said, If I Ever Was a Child, Misunderstood, Someone to Lose, Handshake Drugs, Via Chicago, Bull Black Nova, Reservations, Impossible Germany, New Madrid, California Stars, I Must Be High, We’ve Been Had, Heavy Frummer, I’m the Man Who Loves You, Hummingbird, The Late Greats
Encore: Random Name Generator, Jesus Etc., Spiders (Kidsmoke)
Second Encore: Casino Queen, Outtasite (Outta Mind)