The White Panda
The Blue Note: Columbia, MO
March 17, 2012
Combine St. Patrick’s Day, Columbia, fifteen good friends, and the mash-up dj duo The White Panda and you have the ingredients for a rollicking good time. Sprinkle in about a dozen hilarious activities, inappropriate comments, and a few adult beverages and you are left with an absolute epic.
It’s a bit hard for me to separate all of the above elements from The White Panda show, but isn’t that how any great experience in life is? The White Panda was good, maybe even great, but experiencing them without all the rest would have made for an incomplete and less enjoyable experience.
But let me at least try to describe a few things that made this in particular evening in Columbia great as well as The White Panda themselves. First and foremost, the mash-up dj scene has blown up in recent years. I’m not incredibly into that particular scene, but I have to believe that the popularity of Girl Talk has aided the rise of this particular flavor of DJ’ing. Being a novice and having no mash-up or dj experience, I can’t speak to the particular talent or skill of what is being done.
What I can say is that The White Panda was incredibly entertaining, playing a lot more current hits than mash-ups I have heard before. From the beginning to the end of their set, there was not one moment where the music was not constantly pulsing or the entire crowd was not in some sort of frenzy. One way I know that The White Panda was doing their job expertly was the behavior of all the friends I went with. This is a very fun group, but is not a group that will be deciding on weekend plans and decide they want to go to a club because they just want to dance. But damn it every single person I went with wasn’t in a constant state of frenzied motion all evening.
Let me give you just a taste of a few of the antics that will be permanently ingrained in my memory from this particular show. Frequent chants of “LET’S GET WEIRD” (any Workaholics fans out there?). One of my buddies getting like 15 or 20 one dollar bills from the bartender and throwing them into the crowd off the balcony (it cannot be put into words how awesome this was). Same friend whipping some St. Patty’s Day beads at the stage, ignoring his own strength or the weight of the beads, and almost hitting one of the Pandas. And finally, constantly being worried that people from our group were dancing against the balcony rail so aggressively that either a.) the entire rail was going to break away, or b.) someone was going to just tip right over.
These are the types of things that make a show memorable, on top of the actual performance. And so what if both the DJs wearing Panda masks is a little bit gimmicky, as long as they put on a good show, I’m a fan.
If The White Panda is in your area, get a group of friends, get rowdy, and check them out. Unless you hate fun, you won’t be disappointed.