The Smashing Pumpkins 1993-07-26

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July 26, 1993 – Chicago, IL, US
Live performance by The Smashing Pumpkins
ArtistThe Smashing Pumpkins
DateJuly 26, 1993
VenueTower Records
Coordinates41°55′26″N 87°38′21″W
LocationChicago, IL, US
Venue typeRecord store
PersonnelBilly Corgan, James Iha, D'arcy Wretzky, Jimmy Chamberlin
Order of bandsThe Smashing Pumpkins

July 26, 1993 was the midnight record release show for Siamese Dream. The show was broadcast live by 93-XRT. After the performance, the band held a merch signing for fans.

Reportedly, up to 3,000 fans arrived for the show, to the extent that Chicago police were called for crowd control and had to shut down the street from traffic. Around 300-400 were granted entry to the show.

To the band's surprise, some fans knew all the words to the songs, as a bootleg of Siamese Dream had been circulating for months prior to its actual release.

The show was loosely recreated at a Tower Records popup at Madame ZuZu's on September 17, 2023.

Full performance

Setlist[edit | edit source]

Set[edit | edit source]

  1. "Rocket(acoustic) 
  2. "Cherub Rock(acoustic) 
  3. "Today(acoustic) 
  4. "Disarm(acoustic) 
  5. "Siva(acoustic) 
  6. "Mayonaise(acoustic) 
  7. "Hummer(acoustic) 
  8. "I Am One(abandoned) (acoustic) 

Banter[edit | edit source]

Frank E. Lee: Woo! Wooooooo! What a crowd we have assembled here at Tower Records. 93 WXRT Chicago, I’m Frank E. Lee. We’re live on the radio, let’s make some noise! (crowd cheers) It’s great.... I mean, we got people waiting in line to get outside and the crowd goes all the way back to the jazz section, for crying out loud! But it’s great, it’s great to be here in a record store, which is where I spent so much time of my glorious, misspent youth. I was budgeted to like one album a week and it was really hard to go into the store and find that one album. But what a great pleasure it was to take it home, put it on the stereo and read the liner notes while it played: one of the great pleasures in life indeed. And we’ve got a similar situation to that here tonight...with Smashing Pumpkins! (crowd cheers)
BC: Heh heh! Yeah!
Frank E.: You know, Chicago–-Chicago’s kind of a provincial town and I mean that in the--in the best possible sense of the word. That’s–-it’s the kind of town that jealously guards its people, whether it’s its sports teams or whether it’s musicians. But you know, there comes a time...there comes a time when the bird has to leave the nest, when the minor league player goes to the big show and that’s the case we have here tonight...with Smashing Pumpkins, they’re about to make their major label debut! We got the band’s with us here tonight [sic]...
BC: Hi.
Frank E.: ...Jimmy Chamberlin on drums!
Iha: Please, give it up.
Frank E.: D’arcy on bass! James Iha on guitar. Billy Corgan on guitar and vocals. Now this is a band that really doesn’t have to prove themselves, their debut album Gish sold over 300,000 copies on an independent label. The new one is gonna be out at midnight tonight, you’re gonna have your chance to buy it here at Tower Records. And I know you’ll all buy mass quantities of it.
BC: Hahahaha!
Frank E.: You know, Billy, I wanted to ask a few introductory remarks here from Billy.
BC: Haha.
Frank E.: First of all, congratulations.
BC: Thank you, Frank E. Frank, are-–is it Frank or Frankie? No, it’s Frank....
Frank E.: E with a period.
BC: Right, Frank! Thank you, Frank.
Frank E.: He’s got it, he knows me. Now whenever you make a record like Gish that sold so many, there’s obviously a number of pressures, a number of challenges that await you when you put out another one. And I--
BC: Nah, no pressure at all.
Frank E.: No? No? (crowd chanting “Play! Play! Play!”) Alright! I guess the crowd has spoken. So without further ado, live from Tower Records and live on 93 XRT, let’s hear it for Smashing Pumpkins!
BC: Whoooo!!!
Iha: Check, check.
BC: Are you ready to rock? (crowd cheers) Well, you're in the wrong place.
BC: Hi, hi, hi. Well, you're all in such a rockin' mood, it's like...I wish I had my dee-stortion pet-tal. But we don’
Iha: We are simply men with acoustic guitars.
BC: We are here to open ourselves bare for you all to see. And hey, by the way, as long as I'm thinking about it, I hope no one reads the Sun-Times because whoever wrote that Sun-Times article is an idiot and-–and I, and that’s, that’s exactly the reason, that's exactly the reason why we've had so many problems with Chicago, is ‘cause of shoddy journalism like that, so...keep your eyes and ears open and look beyond what you read because not everything that everyone writes is truth. So, screw the Sun-Times.
Cherub Rock
Iha: Thank you very much.
BC: So...that was Cherub Rock. These are all new songs. what do you wanna say to the rest of Chicagoland?
(audience screaming)
Iha: Heh! Okay, heh heh, let's play a song.
BC: I think they hear you, I think they hear you, they're listening and they're getting the message.
BC: So there's been all these, not those kind of rumors. One, we are not the next Nirvana, we are the next Smashing Pumpkins. Number two, Chicago is not the next Seattle, Chicago is what it always has been: Chicago. And there's some rumor about us playing some show on Wednesday night at some club, so you figure it out. But...yeah, here, I’ll just--alright, I'll just tell you, I won't tell the radio public. (muffles the mic) It's at the Metro on Wednesday. And we're playing as the Turnips. (normal) Well, there goes the surprise show, but anyway, well, the other show's sold out, y'know, whatever, but.... No, no, it's not all--it's all ages, don't worry about it. No more, no more, no more prohibited shows. If you're 12, you can come, I don't care, you know: come, have fun, live! (voice cracking) Vive la Chicago! (starts Disarm) Alright, you gotta be quiet for this song, shhhhhh, shhhhhh. Shhhhh.
[tape cut between songs]
Iha: Thank you very much. Ugh! It's really, really hot and gross, so...I wish I was walking my dog but I'm really sweating and...not in tune.
BC: Hey, are you getting my geetar out there, Ian? My guitar is screwed up.
Jimmy: (off mic) What’s new?
BC: What's new, I know.
Iha: Check, check, check. Funny thing about technical problems, they always strike at the weirdest moments. Sometimes on live radio broadcasts and uh, that brings me back to a story: I remember when I was a child, I was three years old and I was listening to WXRT and uh, funny thing about it is that it's a radio station–-
D’arcy: What are you talking about?
Iha: I'm simply filling the space as a technical difficulty has arisen and–-
BC: Alright! As long as we're here, James is looking for a new boyfriend-–oops, I mean girlfriend and uh....
Iha: (mocking) Hahaha. Ahaha.
BC: Ha, haha! See, I'm married now, I can joke about these things.
D’arcy: No, don’t.
Iha: This next song is written about that very subject and uh, it's a sad one and it's called Mayonaise, heh heh.
BC: Heh heh. So this is Mayonaise and it's off our new record recording. Well, you guys are rowdy as uh, as all heck, you know? I–-see...see, originally we wanted to play loud and soft, but it would--there would be police problems so we wouldn't be able to do this at all, so.... But there's gonna be a party over at James' house after the show.
Iha: Right. Heh heh heh.
BC: And we'll be playing electric there.
BC: Um, we wanna do one more song, okay?
Guy in crowd: Freebird!
BC: Now who's yelling “Freebird,” raise your hand. Come here, I want you to come on stage, come on. No, come up on stage. Alright, now, shhh, here, wait.... This is a fine--this is a fine upstanding young man, here, wait, now, wait, shhh, hold on...
Iha: State your name, your age and your uh, your residence.
BC:, yeah, what's your name?
Guy from crowd: Ivan.
BC: Okay, Ivan, now, why have you been yelling “Freebird” for the past hour, tell me why?
Iha: Is there trouble--
Ivan: ‘Cause I’m a Cub head, woooo!!
Iha: Obviously, you're disturbed.
(crowd booing)
BC:, wait wait wait, shhh, now wait.... Now, now--
Iha: Is there trouble at home or is–-have your grades been bad lately?
BC: Now, if listening to a guy on the radio promotes you to scream the same word over and over again, you have a problem. You have a serious problem. Okay? I just wanted to help you, thank you, bye Ivan, good luck.
Iha: Read–-read some Beowulf or something.
(Billy tuning guitar)
BC: Yeah, I know we're disorganized, but it's nothin’ new. Shhh...shhh.
Guy in crowd: Window Paine!
Iha: Hahaha.
BC: Well, but why do you want to hear old songs, can't we play new songs? (crowd cheers) Thank you. You've had, you've had, wait, two years to listen to the old songs, okay? Two years, alright? I played my Window Paine a thousand times, you know, okay? Alright? Just let me play my new songs.
Iha: Freebird. Freebird!
BC: Alright, this is Hummer.
> I Am One (abandoned before lyrics begin)
BC: Oh no, stop, stop. Naw, we don't want anyone to get hurt.
D’arcy: Can't have that.
BC: No, you're having too much fun. Thanks, bye, see ya, take care.
Iha: And here’s Frank E.
Frank E. Lee: Alright, let’s hear it for Jimmy, D’arcy, James, Billy: Smashing Pumpkins! Live on XRT live from Tower Records. We’ll be giving you some live music on the air once again real soon. Now stay cool.... It’s a sea of humanity here at Tower Records. We would like to thank Mike Stone from Virgin Records; Phil Myers, the manager of Tower Records; Vince Giannini with Smashing Pumpkins; Mark Nielsen, XRT chief engineer. The band is gonna come out and sign autographs, so stay cool, okay? And we’re gonna tell you how you can get a copy of the new album. So stay cool. We’re gonna send it back right now to 93 XRT Radio Chicago.