On April 24th, prog-jammers Umphrey’s McGee will take the stage at Lincoln Hall in Chicago for an inventive live music experience akin to a football game called the UMBowl in which the band will perform four “quarters” of music each with a different theme. Tickets to the inaugural UMBowl have been sold out since shortly after they went onsale, but those Umphreaks or curiosity seekers that can’t make it out to the Windy City or can’t score a ticket will be able to watch the action live on iClips for $14.99.
As a recap, here’s a look at the theme for each quarter…
First Quarter: 8:15-9:00 CDT – An acoustic set chosen entirely by attendees. A list of possible choices was sent to ticketholders last week and includes a tune the band has never played before (Weight Around), rarities (Mediterranean Sundance, Never Cease to Amaze), songs the group hasn’t played before unplugged (Hurt Bird Bath, Booth Love) and even a “mystery cover.”
Second Quarter: 9:15-10:15 CDT – An extended version of the group’s Stew Art (S2) series in which attendees drive a set of improvised music by texting ideas to the band which is filtered and displayed on a big screen next to the stage.
Third Quarter: 10:45-11:45 CDT – An electric set chosen entirely by attendees from a list of off the wall options including new covers by the likes of Beck, Led Zeppelin or the Talking Heads, yet another “mystery cover,” long-dormant songs (Muffburger Sandwich, Muff II: The Revenge), the original versions of tunes they’ve changed over the years (Padgett’s Profile, The Haunt), songs played in completely different styles (funk Der Bluten Kat, ska punk Front Porch), weird variations of their originals (Cemetery Walk backwards, Believe The Lie with Kris & Joel on vocals) as well as UM’s trademark mashups (Sweet Sunglasses, Phil’s Seven Nation Money Mash).
Fourth Quarter: 12 – 1 CDT – The fans act as the quarterback for this “choose your own adventure” set. Once the band starts a song or a jam, a large screen will display a number of options for where the band should take the music which the fans can vote on via text message.