The Watkins Glen rumor mill got some strong spins this weekend from two conflicting sources. On Saturday, BandsThatJam.com, a blog based out of New York state, poured gasoline on an already-burning fire by claiming that Phish had signed contracts in place for an 8 set, 3 day Phish-only festival. This report came as a tremendous relief for Phish fans, many who had feared, based on last-week’s speculation, that the band’s festival might be encroached upon by the unwanted scene of The Dave Matthews Band. But as soon as Phish fans began celebrating and discussing summer plans, there came a retort.
Yesterday, Watkins Glen Racetrack President, Michael Printup, publicly denied these reports in the Elmira Gazette saying:
We don’t know who is putting that out. There are a bunch of erroneous sites out there. We’ve been working with a concert promoter. But we don’t even have a contract. It’s all wishful thinking. We haven’t even signed a contract with a promoter. You do that first. Then it’s up to him to see what band he gets…Watkins Glen International is looking at some kind of summer concert, but it’s too early to even start talking about bands.
The WGI President has to deny the story. They can’t publicly confirm until all the loose ends have been tied up. Our source has given us credible, specific information. Our source is not a Phish fan so they wouldn’t even have the ability to make up the information which is very consistent with what Phish has done in the past.
While not getting any more specific on their, allegedly, rock solid source, Stergion went on to defended his report to Hidden Track:
We publish stories based on good information from good sources. We take a look at the circumstances of the information and decide whether or not it’s credible. In this case we believe this will happen so we published it…We never heard DMB mentioned by anyone in person or any sources from within Watkins Glen. We’re confident that Watkins Glen will be a Phish-only festival.
Well, we’ve heard both sides of this hot topic, and while I am leaning towards believing the report of a Phish-only festival, who can know for sure? The Phish at Watkins Glen rumors have circulated for quite some time now, but a true scare came last week when The Dave Matthews Band, who shares a management company, announced 4 multi-day, multi-band festivals around the country this summer. The feared crossover of the Phish and Dave Matthews scenes seemed imminent, and plenty of people were quick to voice plenty of reasons why that was not a good idea. But let’s not even go there. Hopefully, that disaster has been averted. If such an atrocity ever materialized, be sure I’ll weigh with my two cents.
But for now we will wait…and wait. Phish announced their entire 2010 Summer Tour in March last year, but in 2009, they dropped their first set of dates in January and their second set in March. In short, we could hear any day between now an April. With both Trey and Mike about to kick off their own tours, one might guess that Phish wait until they are done to tell us their summer plans. But then again, who knows? Surrounding hotels (of which there are few) and RVs have already been booked around the Watkins Glen area based on buzz alone. And if I had to guess, 8 sets over 3 days sounds just right to end a tour. One can hope…
Jam of the Day:
“Ghost” 7.23.97 II SBD
A seminal Summer ’97 version.
DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:
7.23.1997 Lakewood Amphitheatre, Atlanta, Georgia
The third show US Summer ‘97 capped a comic-book opening to US Summer ’97. Following Virginia Beach and Raleigh, Phish moved down to Atlanta and funked hard in their second visit to the venue. With, perhaps, the hottest “Ghost” of the summer and a smoking “YEM” the band left some legitmate jams in Atlanta, and they were off to Texas at the beginning of a revolutionary summer season. This show goes out via Twitter request to @LacobbieWan! (If you’re on Twitter, follow me @mrminer)
I: Julius, Dirt, NICU, Dogs Stole Things, Ginseng Sullivan, Water in the Sky, Limb By Limb, Split Open and Melt, Billy Breathes, Possum
II: Punch You in the Eye, Ghost > Sample in a Jar, You Enjoy Myself > Rocky Mountain Way* > Chalk Dust Torture
Notes: *Debut, Joe Walsh cover
Source: Schoeps CMC641 > Sonasax > SBM-1 > DA-P1