Play Ball!

Fenway Park - Boston, MA

Fenway Park - Boston, MA

With a timely announcement coming on Opening Day of Major League Baseball’s 2009 season, Phish confirmed the rumor that they will start their summer tour at Boston’s Fenway Park on May 31st.  After a stint in the minors in ’04 at Coney Island’s Keyspan Park, Phish is being called up to the bigs to open up the ’09 season!  Another video announcement highlighted the unique features of the historic ballpark at 4 Yawkey Way, as a camera perused the ornate detail of the Boston shrine. The imagery was backed by Fenway’s organ playing “Take Me Out To The Ballgame,” yet when the song ended, the camera flashed to the organ player who cracked his knuckles and readied himself before delving into a baseball-infused rendition of “Tweezer Reprise!”  Merging America’s two favorite pastimes, the interpretive cover played for the rest of the video as images of the ballpark graced the screen.  With an artistic preview of the stadium that they will soon demolish, Phish once again, infused the community with unparalleled adrenaline and excitement.

It seems that a week cannot go by without another significant development in the Phish world.  Whether it is ticket on sales, added shows, or tour planning, Phish 3.0 is officially under way!  With the addition of Fenway, Phish will play the first real stadium show of their career in one of the smallest and most storied yards in the land.  With a capacity of just under 40,000 without the field, this shouldn’t be the hardest ticket of the summer, but these days that’s not saying much.  But the intriguing question of what lucky fan will pull Fenway’s single red seat amidst a sea of green remains to be answered.

Fenway Box Office (C.Harris)

Fenway Box Office (C.Harris)

People have already begun to speculate if this will mark the beginning of the stadium Phish era, and I’ve got to say I seriously doubt it.  If there is one thing that this summer’s slate has proven to us, it is that Phish 3.0 will play where they want and when they want.  They are choosing only their favorite locations, regardless of size, and booking them.  I don’t think that this show has any predictive value in terms of where Phish will play in the future- they simply wanted to play Fenway.  And to be honest, this show just jumped to the top of the must-see shows list of the summer.  Fenway or The Fox?  Oh, the decisions!  Directly connected to their renewed mission of putting music first, the band is taking liberty in playing unique venues that will inspire them.  I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again- no band can match their music to their surroundings like Phish, and with so many diverse surroundings comprising this summer, the band should respond in diverse and dynamic fashions.  From The Fox to Bonnaroo, and from Asheville Civic Center to Fenway, this summer will be sprinkled with some of the most unique Phish shows in a long time.

In addition to the huge summer kick off party at Fenway, Phish also tacked on a third Jones Beach show on Tuesday June 2nd, increasing the summer total to 27!  With these additional dates, it sure seems like the band is as excited for the summer as we are.  With a night off in between the first and second Jones Beach show, Phish will stick to their practice of not playing more than four nights in a row- a pattern that will assist everyone involved.

Fenway Park at Twilight

Fenway Park at Twilight

Armed with a new album and a renewed sense of purpose, May 31st represents the the turning of the next page.  Hampton was where the band got their sea legs back with concise, direct jamming, and Fenway is when the Phish will begin to swim the ocean waters again.  In one of the most exciting locales of their career, you can be sure the band will come out in Boston ready to conquer the world once again.

With only two months to go, Summer ’09 is shaping up to be quite the special season- not only because Phish is playing again, but because they are playing exclusively great venues.  Meaningful for their role in the Phish history, or their own place in cultural history, these venues were chosen with utmost care and creativity, creating the most diverse tour in ages.  Fenway, Red Rocks, The Gorge, The Fox, Asheville Civic, Bonnaroo, Deer Creek, Alpine, Merriweather, SPAC- the list goes on and on.  It all sounds to good to be true.  But truth be told, with the band playing in center field, Fenway will become our very own field of dreams.


Tickets requests for Fenway and Jones Beach can be made here now through this Sunday, April 12th at midnight Eastern.  Fenway tickets will go on sale through eTix, which looks very likely to crash on Saturday, April 18th at 10 am Eastern.  Jones Beach’s new first show goes on sale Friday, April 17th at 10 am Eastern via Live Nation.



7.2.98 The Grey Hall, Christiana, Copenhagen, DK < LINK

7.2.98 The Grey Hall, Christiana, Copenhagen, DK < TORRENT LINK

phish-copenhagen-98“Ghost > Jim > Caspian, YEM”- the four song second set.  With the most cohesive frame of Europe ’98, Phish closed the curtain on their three nights of magic at The Grey Hall.  The improv throughout this set was phenomenal, highlighted by “Ghost” and “YEM.” Throw in a first set versions of “Theme” and “Fluffhead” with the debuts of “Meat” and “Fikus,”all in a Scandinavian barn, and you’ve got quite the show.  Check it out; it’s one to be considered strongly by Live Phish for release!

I: Birds of a Feather, Cars Trucks Buses, Theme From the Bottom, Brian and Robert, Meat*, Fikus*, Shafty, Fluffhead, Ginseng Sullivan, Punch You in the Eye, Character Zero

II: Ghost > Runaway Jim > Prince Caspian, You Enjoy Myself

E: Simple


Source: Schoeps MK4 (FOB; mics in a hat) > VMS IO2b > KCY > DA P1 recorded@ 48

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286 Responses to “Play Ball!”

  1. whole tour! Says:

    bars up there stop serving at like 12:15…..which sucks when your used to last call being at 1:45.

  2. dyda Says:

    isn’t last call like 4am in nyc?

  3. whole tour! Says:

    that’s new york… is way early

  4. dyda Says:

    i was just asking cause yeah that is way early compared to other places. at least it isn’t montreal. theirs is like 11pm i think.

  5. dyda Says:

    speaking of which, i’m going to get a case and hopefully watch the pens lock up a playoff spot. night all.

  6. Cactus Says:

    Yo vengo de la montana hijo, donde la gente vienen a rezar…..

  7. guyforget Says:

    xp. it’s all good, seems to correct itself over time. thanks Alex

  8. guyforget Says:

    later all. Rangers vs Canadiens starting now, gotta win this one.

  9. cottle Says:

    couple shots of whiskey…women round here start lookin’ good

  10. cottle Says:

    ^in regards to the Bobby comments

  11. Frankie Says:

    Can’t. Stop. Watching.

  12. purplehumpbackwhale Says:

    damn 7.2.98 is HOT that ghost is illy. livephish should DEFINITELY consider releasing this show. but they should think about anything from june 1994 and 12.31.93 first. in an ideal world, all of 97, 98 and 94 would be available remastered from LP though, wouldnt it… dang. see you all at jone sbeach (and hopefully fenway!)

  13. whole tour! Says:

    @frankie….most certainly one of the greatest “tubes” ever! thanks for the link…

    it’s so funked out and slow and grooving….then the reprise is just big ole pair of ( + V + ) ‘S!

  14. whole tour! Says:

    * ( + V + ) …… a big ole pair of em!

  15. whole tour! Says:

    I have that first clav solo by page as a ring tone on my cell phone!!!

  16. whole tour! Says:

    they say that only 4 bands have ever caused MSG to sway back and forth, rocking the entire building and causeing the stage to act as a raft:

    1) iron maiden
    2) Pearl jam
    3) Grateful Dead
    4) PHISH!!!!

  17. nonoyolker Says:

    I live in Boston. Trains stop at 12:50am, bars close at 2:00am. Fenway will rage, but start/end early. Shit is open air, in town, and going to be noisy as hell on a Sunday night, hence curfew. Still going to be a serious fuggin’ scene. The boys are doing something they’ve never done before. pretty sweet

  18. Tadcaster Says:

    I’m feeling caught between the Wedding music talk and the Go-To Jam discussion.

    My wife is having a C-section tomorrow morning.(!) There will be a 10-15 minute span where I will be waiting by myself in a hallway for her to be prepped before I go in.

    I remember this waiting period being very nerve wracking before the last baby. It seems to go on forever and all these thoughts run through your head…is everyhing going alright in there? It seems to be taking a long time…etc…

    This time I am bringing the Ipod and I’m loading a blissed out jam to take good vibes into the operating room.

    I have one of those Just-Jams compilations and I’m planning on the 12/31/93 Hood jam and if there is time, the Great Went Simple. I know them both so well and they are so beautiful. A little Phishhead coming in the morning!

  19. whole tour! Says:

    ^ right on nonoyolker!

    I can only speak from visiting boston. My older brother used to live in the city, but now he lives in Quincy. I was wrong about the bars up there in the city, i was thinking of quincy. I think the bars there close earlier in quincy than in the city. I just remember that I was was halfway getting toasted when the bar turned the lights on and said “last call” around 12:50 maybe? i was kinda shocked being from florida where last call is always at like 1:45.

    Open air phish in boston reminds me of those earth day celebrations at the band shell from a few years back. I caught Widespread panic playing at that bandshell kinda near the common, but back on the river. I think it was in 1996 or 1997. It was so fucking cool walking trhough the commons to get there and totally hearing panic shred through the streets. I’d imagine that phish playing at fenway would be audible for several blocks surrounding fenway. I’ve seen a few shows at the avalon over the years, which was right across the street from fenway. One show i went to there was during a red sox game, so on one side of the street you had people waiting to see a show…getting ripped in line….and on the other side it was red sox fans. It was crazy cool!

    Hopefully my bro will score a pair of tix in the lottery! I can’t wait!

  20. whole tour! Says:

    congrats tadcaster!

  21. Tadcaster Says:

    Thanks tour! We’re extremely excited and very in the moment.

    For Fenway, Monday will be Memorial Day as well…so that may help with the looseness of things. I’ve read plenty of articles in the Globe though about the fights the neighbors have had to limit the number of concerts they are allowed to stage at Fenway. Three nights in a row will push the limit and I’m sure Phish will be respectful guests. Can’t wait….

  22. nonoyolker Says:

    Tad – Congrats man! That is intense everything is going down tomorrow, best of luck! Can’t think of two better go to jams to call on for the occassion. Maybe throw in a nye ’98 mike’s and reba from lowell ’95 in case it takes a b bit? Awesome story though man, congrats!
    Whole – yeah, i’ve seen some shit at the hatch shell. Can’t Herbie Hancock there, was sick. Boston in spring is a cool scene. People are up tight because of the weather, they aren’t inherently massholes. The avalon across from Fenway just got renovated as the house of blues. I was there Friday night for Moe. That area rages and is literally next to Fenway. Going to be a serious time…

  23. Hooks Says:

    bonarroo’s basically gonna be phish with a shitload of opening bands and after parties. I’m going to try to downplay my chatter and buildup of their shows there, so as not to drive my gf crazy, but no matter what I’ll be getting shit for it. then they come out and, well, kill it.

  24. hairy pood Says:

    house of blues boston has memorial day weekend mysteriously unscheduled…

  25. Little Buddy Says:

    Seems to be some confusion regarding memorial day weekend. memorial day is May 25, the weekend before Phish. Just an FYI…

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