Widespread Panic: John Bell, George McConnell (vocals, guitar); Dave Schools (vocals, bass); Todd Nance (vocals, drums); John "JoJo" Hermann (keyboards); Domingo S. Ortiz (percussion).
The DVD portion of this release features a 5.1 surround sound mix, a bonus track, photo gallery, and weblinks.
Of the many Southern-based "jam bands" that garnered large followings in the wake of Jerry Garcia and The Grateful Dead's untimely demise, Widespread Panic is perhaps the only ensemble to both fully explore the progressive tendencies touched on by contemporaries like Phish and Dave Matthews, and accurately capture the Dead's rootsy, homespun hippy vibe. While Widespread Panic have never equaled the Dead in terms of songwriting, on BALL, the band makes a significant leap forward in this department. WP properly balances its trademark butt-shaking, percussion-fueled Southern boogie grooves with just enough hooks to attract those who generally use the bass solo as an opportunity to hit the concession stand. Fans of the band's jammier side should make sure to check out the hidden bonus track at the end of track 13, which is about as close a musical equivalent to a mellow late-night summer trip as has ever been recorded.