Post-Football Food For Thought

What a weekend! Capped with an incredibly exciting Super Bowl, these last few days have been a roller coaster ride of Phish ticket mania.  With all tickets now sold, we may be seeing West Coast dates before too long.  Imagine what will happen to Live Nation’s site when Red Rocks goes on sale?  I don’t even want to.  Many of the frustrations we faced with their ticketing system are documented for their CEO here.  Nonetheless, as we all try to position ourselves for these summer shows, it is all finally sinking in- Phish is happening…

13699471image9b586be0479711d7…For those paying attention (I wasn’t), there was a Hampton re-release right after the Super Bowl ended.  A ticketless friend of mine pulled two for each night in six separate transactions, completely reversing his plans for the first week of March!  Maybe some of you scored too, but by the time I heard, there was nothing left.  This may continue to happen.  Be alert…

…Phish seems to be way under-priced, causing scalpers to drool at the profit margin they can make on our band and flock like vultures to the tickets.  While other bands of their stature use tiered ticket structures, charging well over $100 for the best seats, Phish should be respected for giving the people who actually get to buy tickets a real bargain.  But the increasing number of fans who have been forced to scalp from brokers have had to cough up an amount of money that much closer represents Phish’s “market value.”  It is becoming increasingly apparent that Phish’s “market value” today is between $100 and $400 dollars depending on the size of the venue and the quality of seat.  As someone on this comment board brought up over the weekend, would it help if Phish tickets cost $100, therefore decreasing the profit margin to be made by scalpers?  Maybe this is one step, albeit counter-intuitive, to reducing broker interference with the Phish scene.  If there isn’t enough money to be made, maybe they will go elsewhere?  Maybe not…

phish2People in Ashvelle got screwed on Friday. After being told that 400 tickets would be sold at the Civic Center, over 150 people waited for over a day to score these tickets.  The fans even organized their own list of names so people didn’t need to remain lined up, creating a mini-Phish lot party.  Yet when 10 am Friday came, an “error” in the Ticketmaster computer system released the 400 tickets that were to be held for Asheville’s box office, resulting in only twenty locals scoring stubs for the summer’s second smallest show.  Sorry Asheville people, that sucks…

…Let’s hear it for!  Out of the four ticket systems used for tickets this weekend, Knoxville’s seemed  by far the most efficient.  Granted they probably weren’t hit with nearly the traffic of Live Nation or St. Louis’ Metrotix, but the system worked smoothly.  I looked for Knoxville on Live Nation before realizing they were being sold elsewhere.  Quickly logging onto, I was automatically queued and the screen refreshed every 60 seconds, like Metrotix did for The Fox.  However, unlike Metrotix where I never saw another screen, I was quickly brought into the site, pulled up a 100 level after searching for a floor ticket twice, and checked out without hassle.  Compared to all my other attempts this weekend, this was a breeze…

image-ba5300d6449611d7…Hampton is now officially one month away! What once seemed like an eternity has been condensed to only four weeks of waiting.  What seemed like fantasy is now an impending reality!  Using the future tense to predict what might happen will soon be out the window, as we will be talking about what Phish is doing on a nightly basis.  There couldn’t be a more fitting venue than Hampton to launch round three; with a purely GA free for all, things will be insane and explosive to say the least.  People have referenced the last comeback, saying these Hampton shows will merely be sloppy warm-ups.  And while I agree that Summer will be a different story when all is said and done, I have a feeling these first three shows are gonna’ be a hell of a lot different from the last return.  I’m not going on anything but intuition, but it just feels different- way different…

…I guess Phish 3.0 is all about trading tickets online.  In a flurry like nothing I’ve ever seen, fans have been wheeling and dealing all over the web, trading, selling, and scoring any and all tickets they need.  I like it; it’s very democratic.  While I do believe you can get tickets at shows, it is always nicer to have yours beforehand, and it seems like more fans are trying to do that.  This can only be a good thing.  I am trying to devise a tool to facilitate this exchange. Stay tuned…



7.24.98 Woodlands Pavilion, Houston, TX SBD < LINK

1998-07-24moToday we have a leaked SBD of a dark-horse Summer ’98 show.  The second set starts off with the funkalicious combo of “Wolfman’s > 2001,”  before taking an abrupt left turn into the rare “Scent of a Mule.”  A set-ending “Slave,” “Chalk Dust” one-two punch, punctuated a fine night in Texas.  The first set contained the summer’s omnipresent “Moma Dance” and psychedelic segments of improv in “Stash” and “Taste.” Enjoy the SBD!

I: The Moma Dance, Runaway Jim, Bouncing Around The Room, Stash, My Soul, Taste, Golgi Apparatus, Loving Cup

II: Wolfman’s Brother > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Scent of a Mule > Ha Ha Ha > Scent of a Mule, Slave to the Traffic Light, Chalkdust Torture.

E: Character Zero

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137 Responses to “Post-Football Food For Thought”

  1. guyforget Says:

    stadiiums suck

  2. camman Says:

    maybe so guy, but that would have helped ease up the ticket situation even more.. it was just an idea and it probably wont happen. i doubt we’ll see too many shows like Brooklyn ’04

  3. spideyguy0 Says:

    Miner if your friend has any of those extras,

  4. guyforget Says:

    brooklyn was at least a small minor league park, which is cool. big stadiums, especially new ones, sound like shit. I’ve seen Springsteen, who knows how to blow the roof off an arena, in Giants Stadium and it absolutely horrible. when you start packing 50-70 thousand in stadiums, you lose the intimacy and the personality of the show, no matter what band you’re talking about.

  5. spideyguy0 Says:

    I think for a lot of reasons minor league parks are the way to go. They’re slightly smaller, they’re slightly more out of the way, tickets would probably be cheaper, and demand would be slightly less. They’d still hold 30 or 40K pretty easily if you pack the whole field.

  6. showhe Says:

    I agree with guy….I’m williing to get shut out of a few shows in order to maintain the intimacy of a show. The more they tour, the less the demand for these future shows will be. Right now everyone has waited so long to see them again that everyone and their brother wants a ticket. Give it a few tours and you’ll see the demand lessen…that’s my guess anyway.

  7. guyforget Says:

    showhe, exactly Phish 2010 will be a hell of a lot different than Phish 09

  8. spideyguy0 Says:

    the problem is, how many tours do you really think we’re gonna have? they came back in 03 and lasted for about 18 months, which was about 5 or 6 tours. I’m sure everyone would love to think that now that they’re back, they’re back for the next 10 years, but odds are that won’t be the case and the truth is, every tour could be the last tour, so in this situation, I really don’t think waiting is the way to go. You need to see the band as much as you can while you can, and if that means stadiums and Bonnaroo then fine

  9. Pencilneck Says:

    So heartbroken over the Hampton release. Super cool that more freindlies got themselves some tix, just wish I was one of ’em. Thanks Miner, for some more great music!

  10. camman Says:

    i agree with spidey about that last tour situation, no matter what it costs, from here on out im going to at least see one show per tour, NYE included… i can’t wait for Bonnaroo, no matter what the Nay-sayers say… its going to be sick…

  11. showhe Says:

    In the summer of ’03 I had an extra for each night of deer creek due to a friend that couldn’t make it…I could barely give those tickets away. I didn’t think for a minute back then that phish would be around forever. Time will tell but I have to think that it will be much the same as it was…huge demand at first, then dwindling demand the longer they tour. I don’t mind bonaroo but I really think big stadiums isn’t the direction the band would want to take or else they would have done that already with this tour. You know they had to realize the demand for these tickets would be huge, so why didn’t they just play larger venues to begin with?

  12. lot rat Says:

    There is a lot of hype on this board for tickets, but hold on… Summer 2003 had 1 sold out show (atlanta sat nigth)out of what 25??? Shoreline/Gorge (first since 99) you couldn’t give tix away.
    The first show back in LA 2/14/03 people were giving tix away. Summer 04 was wide open until they announced they were splitting.
    This band could not fill (or even half fill) any stadiums unless it was in the northeast or comeback shows, even then tix would be a joke.

    I think this demand is being overblown due to the fact that people are buying whatever tix they can get. Wait till people get stuck 6 extra lawns to star lake or alpine and dont have the dough to fly. Other than the small venues, and northeast sheds, lawn tix will be easily obtainable to remining shows, and knoxville should be cake.

    The question which phish is gonna show. I am hopeful like Miner, its feels different, there coming back on there own terms…but 5 years is a sizeable gap and the band will have to prove they are committed. They have all said how seriously they take the music, i think it will show early on (maybe not hampton) as to which direction we are gonna see.

    1 month.

  13. Los Says:

    because they didnt want to…

  14. guyforget Says:

    Rat, that scene outside the Forum in LA was crazy. THere were just extra tix stuck everywhere in the chail link fence around the place.

  15. MP Says:

    Less talk, more tour.

  16. Dan Says:

    Hi guys, I don’t know where else to put this, Phantasy Tour isn’t listening, so here’s my offer:

    Being 17, I can only go to Saturday Hampton if I have a ticket. I’ve been offered a free Sunday and have an extra third level Knoxville, so here’s my offer:

    My Sunday + Knoxville for your Saturday. If anyone can help me, it would be a ridiculous showing of generosity, I just realized how close Hampton is and how mind blowing it would be to be there.

    Hit me at if interested.

  17. Selector J Says:

    @ Miner
    “As someone on the this comment board brought up over the weekend, would it help if Phish tickets cost $100, therefore decreasing the profit margin to be made by scalpers?”

    Selector reference!

    @ showhe
    I think you’re right on. Everyone’s excited now but the buzz will wear off and tickets are going to be much easier to come by.

    Here’s why (@ Everyone):
    Another thing that might contribute to tickets getting easier to “pull”, (in the scalper lingo), is that Phish’s extended hiatuses has likely hurt their market share. I just don’t think the “new generation” is going to be nearly as populous as in the past. Everyone knows their best selling point is their live show for all the reasons Miner eloquently writes about on this blog everyday. How many times have you converted a non-phish fan by playing them a bootleg in the last five years? In my experience they just start to look bored and eventually annoyed.

    Since October 8th of 2000, Phish has played 54.5 shows (I counted the Letterman Marquee show as the half). Could they really have maintained their level of “converts” with this sort of output? Most of the young kids who got to see just a show or two probably have moved on to other things by now. I think there will be a huge whole in the Phish fanbase demographic because of this which will yeild easier tickets.

    I could be way off, there are the McLovins and Camman, but I just don’t think kids are listening to Phish in their formative musical-taste-building years in the numbers they have in the past. As a grad student here at UT in Austin, I work at the college radio station with a lot of musical minded undergrads, and maybe this is a poor sampling, but for the most part everyone at the station *loathes* Phish. They look at me like I’m trying to get them to fall in love with Manilow.

    Like I said, I could be wrong.

    **shameless plug**
    By the way, If you love you some old school reggae, tune into tonight at 10/9pm Central for my show “When Roots Attack!” [Click on my name to go to the show’s website and from there you can check out old playlists and such.]

  18. Jeff Says:

    i’m in physical pain about the re-release. i was up, 5 feet from my CPU. i wish i didn’t kow this even went down.

    Mr. Minor – (in jest) – Worst Blog Ever.

  19. swamprabbit Says:

    I’ve been seeing alot of talk on here and PT about how tight the tickets are, playing in stadiums, etc. In my opinion this mini-tour is all about hype. Never forget that in addition to being excellent musicians the members of Phish have always been extraordinarily good SALESMEN! Not only were all the festivals (Great Went, Big Cypress, etc.) a great time but Phish made mad money. I think the boys are going to build up the hype this summer with a few short tours and then go all out in the Fall (hoping to guarantee good ticket sales). The small venues at Asheville and the Fox also fit this model – designed to steer people who didn’t get tickets to Bonnaroo. This tour is not a good indication of Phish’s popularity. When a real is announced – tickets will be much easier to get. I think that the Knoxville show is the best indication of Phish’s popularity so far. It sold – but it took a while and virtually anyone who wanted a ticket got one despite the fact that many people purchased extras hoping for a trade. Just my thoughts. I love this site Mr. Miner!

  20. Mitch Says: now hosts a board for trading tix. start there and then i will see if we cant get something organized for pthoughts readers.

  21. Jonathan Says:

    When I was a wee lad my parents took my on tour with David Hasselhoff and The Night Machine. Sickest tour ever, from what I remeber. I was 2 1/2.
    I remeber the stories about that tour. Hardest ticket to get your hands on. When I was 2 we had no Ebay or In order to sell extra tickets we had to tie them (tickets) to seagulls and hope they made it to their destination. Funny, that never worked. I lost a lot of money using those seagulls!
    What the hell am I talking about.

    See you guys, got to get back to work. I love this site.

    Thanks Miner!!!

  22. lot rat Says:

    Rat, that scene outside the Forum in LA was crazy

    i was trying to score a grilled cheese in the lot after the show, when one of the LA traffic copters dropped in about 10 feet above my head started hollering at me on the megaphoines to disperse.

  23. Billy Breathes Says:

    lot rat – i literally just laughed out loud. thanks for the imagery. 🙂

  24. Selector J Says:

    I agree with Lot Rat, too. There’s no way Phish could financially pull off a stadium tour at this point.

    Phish is popular but damn, trying to pull off a stadium tour! Ridiculous. Maybe if they only did 5 shows for the tour, or something, but even then so many people would be turned off by the idea of the stadium they’d probably still struggle to move those tickets.

    I, for one, am with Fishman who stated at some point in the past that (I’m going to lazily paraphrase a half-remembered quote here) he’d be done with Phish if they started playing stadiums.

  25. Dave Says:

    FYI…Bonnaroo will post the official lineup at Midnight Eastern.

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