RICHMOND, Va. — Most of downtown Richmond burned to the ground late Saturday evening, after Old Crow Medicine Show failed to play “Wagon Wheel” during their performance at the Altria Theater, sources confirmed Sunday.
While their set included crowd favorites “This Train is Bound for Glory,” “My Good Gal,” and “This Land is Your Land,” the group’s signature song was notably absent, which led to widespread riots and looting throughout the city from furious patrons.
When asked afterwards as to why they didn’t just play the song, guitarist Critter Fuqua responded, “I don’t know? We just didn’t feel like playing ‘Wagon Wheel’ last night. We’ve had two new albums come out in the past couple of years. We just felt like playing other songs.”
However, the audience did not take kindly to the song’s absence. After the final encore, a mob rushed the stage, confronting the band and demanding that they play “Wagon Wheel.” While eyewitness accounts claim that the mob did not have pitchforks or torches, Old Crow fan and mob participant Colin Marks did somehow manage to light the stage on fire.
“I just wanted to hear them play ‘Wagon Wheel!’” Marks said. “I didn’t get to see them last year when they came to Maymont and my friends won’t let me forget it. How was I supposed to know that smashing a speaker would cause an electrical fire?”
Once the mob spilled onto the streets, they quickly began to attack VCU’s Monroe Park campus, setting fire to both Cabell Library and the Shafer Court Dining Center. The rioting continued into the night throughout downtown, leading to fires at City Hall, the Virginia State Capitol, and 3rd Street Diner.
“Fuck it, let’s burn this shit to the ground!” concert attendee and amateur arsonist Cody Wheeler stated in a mid-riot interview, before lighting a Molotov cocktail to throw at a downtown loft. “Everything goes up until they play the damn song! Fuck ‘em, let’s rock those yuppie condos to ashes!”
Though no concert attendees were killed during the madness, most of Richmond was heavily impacted throughout the night, including the southbound train.
At press time, Old Crow Medicine Show announced that they would perform a benefit concert to help rebuild Richmond. However, they did not say if they would play “Wagon Wheel” at the concert.