The Festival Buzz

Watkins Glen, New York

The Watkins Glen rumor mill got some strong spins this weekend from two conflicting sources. On Saturday,, 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.

But when Hidden‘s Scotty B reached out to Peter Stergion of BandsThatJam for clarification of their report, Stergion was quick to stand by his story. Stergion explained:

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.

10.31.09 (G.Lucas)

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.

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7.23.1997 Lakewood Amphitheatre, Atlanta, Georgia

FLAC Torrent (via etree), Mp3 Torrent, Megaupload < Links

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

E: Frankenstein

Notes: *Debut, Joe Walsh cover

Source: Schoeps CMC641 > Sonasax > SBM-1 > DA-P1

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1,063 Responses to “The Festival Buzz”

  1. JeffieM Says:

    The most useful metaphor for the “The Iraq War would have worked if it had been planned and executed better” argument is “If doing something involves walking a tight rope across niagara falls while juggling daggers, you might want to reconsider whether or not that something really needs to be done.”

  2. SillyWilly Says:


    i agree with you, totally.

    my point is a sub-point of yours.

    my point was in response to GP420 when he said the middle east needed their own 30 Years War. I think that modernity ended the catholic/protestant struggle, and not solely the 30 Years War.

    I find the view that the middle east needs their own 30 Years War to be hugely problematic.

    1. because the 30 Years War should never be wished on anyone

    and 2. i find it theoretically wrong.

  3. EL Duderino Says:

    We had the proper excuse during the first Gulf War.

    Schwatzkopf said “All the way to Bagdad” and old man Bush told him to shut the fuck up…

  4. gratefulcub Says:

    “Pakistan’s interest in Afghanistan though, has as much to do with strategic thought vis-a-vis India”

    Bingo. That is lost on the American public and talking heads. We talk about Pakistan as if their national goals should line up with ours, when they don’t care about the ME, al Quaeda, or us. They are in a 1,000 year old blood fued with India. The biggest fear we should have from them is the mutual destruction of both countries with nukes, which destroys the world. They’re not coming for us directly.

    Good luck tonight.

  5. Mr. Palmer Says:

    gcub- side note. I thought of you earlier as we discussed 2.20.03. I know you like to pimp that Waves>Simple>Jibboo. 🙂

  6. Jtran Says:

    Sorry to hijack

    Anyone seen Enter the Void? About 40 minutes in now, still trying to figure out my feelings thusfar.

  7. guitarpicker420! Says:

    Real quick – just in, Mubarak is stepping down. Going to be an interesting couple of months for sure. Obama is supposed to speak about it any minute.

  8. gratefulcub Says:

    I agree SW, even though I am not as versed in the 30 years war as you guys. I think it’s digging too deep. The problems in that region are colonial in nature. We chopped it up and appointed kings to pump oil. The autocracies remain.

    It’s a great moral and ethical question for us all though: knowing that the region freeing itself from dictators will cause global economic crisis that will impact each of us, what do you want to happen? If their freedom causes an actual global depression, is it worth it? Publicly I say “of course, not question” but when I’m alone and honest, it gets more difficult.

  9. rivertrance Says:

    my custy ass just spun this radio city ghost for the first time. didn’t catch these shows. my girl was out there.

    has to be the hottest ghost I ever heard. the Sugar Hill Gang jam or some old school hip hop feeling shit. can’t believe I’ve never heard this.

    gonna def grab a RV for the festi. stayed off site for Indio but I think may have to do the east coast festi on site.

    just got hit with a gust of grade A pure uncut fucking cold on that dog walk.


  10. gratefulcub Says:

    OK, I’m done now, but that was fun!

    2.20.03, now you are just teasing me. Yes, I do pimp that one regularly, but don’t sleep on the Tweezer to open set 2 or the -7 nicely placed late in the second set. I love 3.0 phish, but I do occasionally miss the 2.5 hour dance parties.

  11. gratefulcub Says:

    Radio City Ghost is special, but it’s no Christiana Ghost (IMHO, YMMV, more acronymns might apply)

  12. sumodie Says:

    shoveling snow is great for phish listening

    run jim & piper>guy forget from the sbd project are mindmeltingly good,shi-ite have my past phish listenin skills been dreadful

    that 11.13.96 2001>suzy>jam was also a huge surprise (link on p.20)

    arms ready to fall off tho…got snow?

  13. Mr. Palmer Says:

    Rivertrance- started up Ellroy’s American Tabloid. Good stuff so far and i’m only 60 or so pages in. thanks for the rec.

  14. gratefulcub Says:

    Im out of practice: Rivertrance=AW, right? If not, my apologies.

  15. gratefulcub Says:

    I’m just going to assume yes, and say….

    I told you that I usually need multiple listens to albums that I love for the long term. Inspiration Information is one of the great albums of all time.

  16. rivertrance Says:

    nice Palmer. I love that one.

    his short concise writing style is one of my posting influences.

    just finished the 3rd of that trilogy Blood’s a Rover

    I’m reading From Beirut to Jerusalem by Thomas Friedman right now. my girl was reading it and I just picked it up.

    interesting read.

  17. rivertrance Says:

    I agree Cub. that albums greatness is somewhat subtle. the B side is just crazy and heavy but the first side is just slick as shit. something about his vocal delivery, the crazy lyrics about just kicking it, and those amazing arrangements are $$$

    I have the original vinyl pressing on Epic. one of my fav records.

  18. JeffieM Says:

    GC, I think we might need to coin that MAMA.

    never done rcmh ghost either.

  19. BingosBrother Says:

    Anybody got a RCMH Ghost link?

    T3 needs to buy me a friggin gyrowheel to get these stalkers away from my interwebz.

  20. gratefulcub Says:

    Thanks Jeffie. I might just use it only from now on. I don’t know what any of them mean, except LLFA.

    I’m actually blah on the rcmh ghost. I don’t like to admit it, since everyone puts in the holy grail of ghosts, and I am a ghost chaser, but it just doesn’t do it for me like others do. Without question, my favorite 20 minutes of music in the history of the world went down during the Christiana Ghost.

    Well, my favorite so far……..until Hampton Memorial day atleast.

  21. KWL Says:

    don’t drink the friedman koolaide! hate that guy

    nice time to pop back in, just started the mediafire thing (click my name) and uploaded some shuggie

    of course i just looked and the 3 albums i uploaded aren’t there. wtf?

    i’ll work on getting it back up

  22. rivertrance Says:

    haven’t heard Christiana

    but of my ghost spinning ears. RCMH Ghost was one of the hottest jams and greateset ghosts mine have heard.

    need to check out Christiana.

  23. rivertrance Says:


    if you knew me I don’t drink any writers kool aid. especially some rich new york times douche bag

    and I’m not a academic smart guy like you

    but I find it to be a fun read. what can you say. don’t have any skin in the game and am fairly uneducated about the conflict.

    like I said not a bad read. but I aint book learned like you.

  24. Mr. Palmer Says:

    7/2/98 = christiana? If so, in tier 2 of kps sbd leaks.

  25. KWL Says:

    3 shuggie albums aren’t there that is

    couple other things are up there still

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