‘Ween’ Breaks Up After 28-year Run

Ween in concert (Photo credit: Kyle Kjellgren)
Ween in concert (Photo credit: Kyle Kjellgren)

Rock duo Ween announced their break up Tuesday after a 28-year run.

The decision was announced by Aaron Freeman, also known by his pseudonym Gene Ween, in an interview with Rolling Stone. He said the move was in order to pursue a solo career.

“For me it’s a closed book,” Freeman told the magazine. “In life sometimes, in the universe, you have to close some doors to have others open.”

Guitarist Mickey Melchiondo, or Dean Ween, seemed to be in the dark. “This is news to me, all I can say for now I guess,” he posted on his private Facebook account.

The band formed in 1984 when Dean and Gene met in their 8th grade typing class in New Hope, Penn. The duo began recording on cassette tapes and playing live shows with a DAT drum machine backing them up.

After the release of their fourth record Chocolate & Cheese in 1994, the brothers adopted a full line up with bass, drums, and keys for their live performances with shows lasting over two and half hours.

Often regarded as a novelty act since their inception due to bizarre lyrics and tape manipulation, Ween’s musical versatility and ability to switch genres over the years have proven their musical prowess and song writing skills.

Examples include their country album 12 Golden Country Greats, their nautically themed The Mollusk, and the dark prog-rock sounds of quebec.

Although their last studio album La Cucaracha was released in 2007, Ween continued to perform sold out festivals and concerts as recent as their three-night New Year’s 2011 performance in Denver.

Freeman recently released his first solo album Marvelous Clouds, a cover album featuring songs from 1960s poet Rod McKuen, last month. Melchiondo, now a licensed boat captain, has taken a break from songwriting and offers fishing tour guides through his website, Mickey’s Guide Service.