For 25 years, Ween have made a career of playing (and oftentimes parodying) almost every single musical genre in existence, from funk to metal to soft rock to calypso to reggae to — well, like we said, every genre in existence. When we reach Gene Ween by phone, he’s listening to Biggie Smalls.

For the band’s first-ever performance in Central Park, he is quick to make a joke, drawing from his extensive musical knowledge of other artists who have performed famous concerts there.

“Well, we have Simon and Garfunkel coming out,” he says with a laugh, “with Ladysmith Black Mambazo. They’re coming out too, so we’re going to do some stuff with them. So we’ll plan something around that, and then we’ll do a bunch of our own stuff.”


His musical brother, Dean Ween, who we speak with a few days later, is quick to diffuse the situation. “Nothing special at all,” he jokes of the show. “Totally ordinary in every way.”

Actually, the band has recently expanded into more interactive facets of performance.
“We’re going to have this girl [from Austin] come sing ‘Freedom of 76’ with us,” says Gene. “She sent us a YouTube video of herself doing a cover of it and it was amazing.”

Friday, 6:30 p.m.
Rumsey Playfield, Central Park, Fifth Avenue at the 69th Street Entrance
$45, 212-255-0020