Pigeons Playing Ping Pong ruffled our tail feathers on their two-night run in Ohio on March 22 and 23. The Ohio Flock showed their strong support as the Baltimore guys played and sold-out their first House of Blues show, while playing The Bluestone in Columbus the following night.
Long-time jam friends Mungion joined the Pigeon guys on this Ohio run and kicked off both nights with their high-energy grooves that was well received by the Flock. The Chicago four-piece started at 8 p.m. sharp in Cleveland’s blusiest venue, and dosed up the Flock with an hour long set to get loose for two sets of continuous funk jams.
The Pigeon guys did indeed stride onstage ready to get loosey-goosey, and opened up the Ohio run with their fun sing-a-long “Henrietta” to get the Flock’s heads bumpin’. A heavy “Offshoot” segued next with a fun “Pink Panther” theme song to make it complete. “Poseidon” was served up next on the funk table that was perfectly paired with a wicked “Whirled” that got the crowd’s heads spinning. A fun “Fortress” made its setlist return that continued into the funky fan-favorite “Somethin’ For Ya” as a tiny Rick Flair sat in to “sing” the famous “woooo!” during the chorus with the Flock. Propped up on a mini desk, he was with the Pigeon guys for remaining set of “Skipjack” and “Time to Ride” and made his walk out as the guys went to take a short set break.
After a brief intermission, the guys buckled down for the second half of the show and came out with a fierce “Moonwalk” that propelled into the opening chords of a phenomenal debut of a “Burning Up My Time > “Sir Real” pairing. Adorned with flashing lights and psychedelic sounds, Ormont rang out the added new lyrics, “To the point where there is no time/Through the iris of disguise/See the shadows of your mind/Reach the mountains of the sky.” With the crowd fully tranced and in shock of what actually just occurred in PPPP history, the band took the crowd on a trippy musical ride of extending the jam back into “Burning Up My Time” before cheers roared as Schon played the opening chords to a hardcore “Horizon” to celebrate the people we love.
The band continued their mind-control in a deep and dark “Sunny Day” before picking up the crowd’s energy with a roller-coaster “King Kong.” With band closed off the second set with a Red Hot Chili Peppers’“Around The World” funk cover that sent the crowd into a gigantic uproar of cheers that brought them back on for a happy “Dawn A New Day” encore to end the sold-out night.
March 22, 2019 – House of Blues // Cleveland, OH
I: Henrietta > Offshoot > Pink Panther > Offshoot, Poseidon > Whirled, Fortress, Somethin’ For Ya* > Skipjack*, Time To Ride* II: Moonwalk^ > Burning Up My Time > Sir Real > Burning Up My Time > Horizon > Sunny Day, King Kong, Around The World
E: Dawn A New Day Notes: * w/ Ric Flair in a Tiny Desk ^ Unfinished
The following evening, the Flock gathered outside Columbus’ beautiful Bluestone cathedral venue that set the multi-colored and fancy energy for the night. Mungion got the crowd in the funk zone for the second night with an hour-long set that included an amusing cover of Bloodhound Gang’s “The Bad Touch.”
Feelin’ the fancy energy, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong strode onstage and wasted no time to get the party started and opened up with a fierce “Pop Off” opener to get us raging. After a funky “Whoopie” that led to an ultimate peak and into a deep “Porcupine,” Ormont started his Columbus banter talking about the adorned stained glass and beautiful venue where you could “check your coat and…” before sliding into “Penguins” that matched Ormont's pajama pants and Schon highlighted a guitar solo to the crowd. Keeping up the groove, the guys started into a infectiously-danceable “Groove Is In The Heart” that led into a funk extension of “Funkijam.” The band ended the night’s first set with a funkadelic “Lightning” before closing off the set with a warm and cozy “Julia” to dazzle up our tail feathers.
The band came back from a much needed set break with the intention to complete one of their best shows yet to date. The psychedelic love tune “Kiwi” set off the second set that sequenced into a bassful “Upfunk” that Carrey dug into and Petropulos' sick drum solo closed it off before continuing into the tranceful “Snake Eyes.” The crowd surged with energy as the intro to “F.U.” arrived with its setlist friends “Spacejam” > The Hop” and kept up that energy as the crowd yelled “F.U.N.K!” with the band. A marvelous “Zydeko” sandwich was served up next with a “Tale as Old as Time” nice and gooey in the middle. A crazy “The Liquid” was deemed the set closer and closed out with a bluesy section in the Bluestone venue, sending the crowd into an uproar. The energy in the room was unmatched at any other show, bringing the band back out for a double encore of the party anthem “Yo Soy Fiesta” and a mind-altering “Schwanthem” for a powerful two-night run close.
March 23, 2019- The Bluestone // Columbus, OH
I: Pop Off, Whoopie, Porcupine, Penguins > Groove is in the Heart > Funkijam >, Lightning, Julia
II: Kiwi > Upfunk, Snake Eyes, Spacejam > The Hop > F.U., Zydeko > Tale as Old as Time > Zydeko, The Liquid
E: Yo Soy Fiesta, Schwanthem
For those of the Flock who weren't lucky enough to make it to this incredible two-night run, the band live streamed both shows via Relix. This was personally one of the best show runs I've witnessed and it's amazing to be a part of this band's musical history as they continue to sell-out and rise to new peaks. The band is currently in the middle of the Spring 2019 tour and are hitting many more cities! Full tour dates can be found below.
*House of Blues photo by Focal Points at Local Joints
*The Bluestone photos by Abby Fox Photography
*Venue photo by Kyle DeKnight
*Stained glass Flock photo by Abby Matthews