Super Ballin!

Super Ball IX - July 1-3, 2011

Yesterday, Phish finally confirmed the rampant rumor, announcing their July 4th weekend festival at Watkins Glen International Race Track in the Finger Lake Region of New York state. With campgrounds opening at 12 noon on June 30th and closing at noon on July 4th, the stage is set for three full days of patriotic Phish and the first East Coast festival of this era! Superball IX, the band’s ninth festival, was unveiled with one of Phish’s more clever videos, to the delight of an announcement-starved fan base. (But no second leg dates….for now.)

The Clifford Ball - 1996

Get ready for hours of one-laned traffic on small highways in New York, because this ain’t Indio, California, folks, this is the Northeast—Phish’s home turf. With only eleven days between the end of Leg One and Superball IX, the band should be plenty warm when they hit the festival stage, and, hopefully, the monstrous feel of festivals past will return. Though Indio was a laid-back West Coast dream, highlighted by the Exile and acoustic sets, the rest of the weekend brought only spots of musical madness. But the band was still on the rise and regaining their chops in October of ’09; Summer 2011 will be an entirely different story. With no specialty sets to prepare for, one would hope Phish would come out and crush skulls as they did in every previous festival but Coventry. The Clifford Ball, The Great Went, Lemonwheel, Oswego, IT—these events were grandiose spectacles in every sense of the word, but when thinking back to the weekend playgrounds, my first memory is of the music.

Almost exclusively coming at the end of tours, festivals of lore were super-sized showcases of summer Phish, and the ban always delivered with spectacular shows. Each festival reflected the improvisational style of their respective tours with jams aplenty, and in festivals, the band usually pushed things just a little bit more. There is no need to type out the laundry list of household jams that sprouted from these festivals, they are monstrous memories—unforgettable experiences—that live on within us and on tape. But that festival sound defined them all; that open-air thunder that traveled a bit slower than usual as the notes bellowed across the field, growling out of sets of speaker towers three-deep; that booming sound and toned down tempo allowed every note to fully blossom before the next one began. And the space in the music expanded as well; jams—literally—became larger than life, enveloping 70,000 brains at once. And at Watkins Glen, this could happen all over again.

Summer Jam - 1973

To up the ante just a bit more, Superball IX will be the first concert held at Watkins Glen since the legendary “Summer Jam” of July 28, 1973—a one-day show featuring The Grateful Dead, The Allman Brothers, and The Band that drew a world-record 600,000 attendees. Many historians estimate it to be the largest single gathering of people in the nation’s history, outdrawing Woodstock almost two to one. And now, Phish will step on this hallowed ground (thankfully with a far smaller crowd) and write their own slice of history into the books.

Tickets go on-sale Monday at noon for $200 a pop, and you can find all the details, information, and humor on the official Super Ball IX website. See you in the Finger Lakes!


Jam of the Day:

Halley’s > Cities > Llama” 8.16.97 III

When I think of massive festival music, my mind often races directly to The Great Went. Here is one of my favorite portions of Phish’s first festival in Limestone, Maine.




8.15.1998 Lemonwheel, Limestone, Maine

FLAC Torrent (via etree), Megaupload < Links

Lemonwheel - 1998

Other out-of-body festival experiences—night one, sets two and four of Lemonwheel; to-die-for festival Phish.

I. Mike’s Song > Simple, Beauty of My Dreams, Roggsae, Split Open and Melt, Poor Heart, Moma Dance, Divided Sky, Water in the Sky, Funky Bitch, Cities ->Weekapaug Groove

II. The Wedge, Reba, Gumbo -> Sanity, Tweezer > The Horse > Silent In The Morning, Chalkdust Torture, Slave To The Traffic Light

III. NICU > David Bowie, Strange Design, Limb by Limb, Brian and Robert, Loving Cup

E: Halley’s Comet > Cavern, Tweezer Reprise

IV: “Ambient Jam”

Source: (FOB) Schoeps CMC6/MK21 > Sonosax SX-M2 > Apogee AD-1000

2,096 Responses to “Super Ballin!”

  1. Mr palmer Says:

    Wife, not wide. Haha. My wife is actually quite thin. She’d be horrified if she saw that. Llfa.

  2. garretc Says:


    You know, I heard a voice on a Furthur AUD that sounded a lot like Mr. C’s yelling “Oh my god! Fake-Jerry looked at me during the Tennessee Jed! I can’t believe we made eye contact during MY FAVORITE SONG!!!!”… I shoulda known it was him!

    And yeah, I’m going to school up here now, Reed College. Couldn’t stand the LA weather, had to transfer to cooler climes!

  3. voopa Says:

    And you KNOW he had a sparkly Tennessee Jed sign.

  4. tela'smuff Says:

    KLW – your voice is strong, and it will be heard.

    @KP – a couple lean more towards psych electronic/ambient, but even those have some regular alt music in the mix. they really range all over the place. each tells a story for a period of time during a couple of nights of tripping.

  5. phoammhead Says:

    now woosta hood . . .

  6. phoammhead Says:

    whoa . . this shit is redonk . . .

  7. ma Says:

    we literally stumbled upon the food shack the first time we ever poked around up here, coming from miami…

    we couldn’t believe it…it was a sign that we were making the right decision to move.

    they opened up a 2nd restaurant, leftovers, on military.
    same menu, bit bigger, just as tasty.

    sweet potatote crusted hog snapper doesn’t suck..

  8. garretc Says:

    Wow, anybody think UCONN and Butler are suffering a little big game nervousness? They’re all playing at a million miles an hour out there…

  9. ma Says:

    cool yogurt place at downtown at the gardens…self serve, add your own toppings…kids love it…next to the carousel.

  10. ma Says:

    same mall as the yardhouse..nice!

    going to shower and watch the game…i’ll check for you later or manana…

  11. phoammhead Says:

    thankyoumrminer! . . .

  12. kenny powers Says:

    cool beans tela’s

  13. kenny powers Says:

    is leo weaver out there?

  14. phoammhead Says:

    staccatto funk jam . . .

  15. Leo Weaver Says:

    I think he’s around here somewhere, whatcha got?

  16. phoammhead Says:

    cheers, guys = leo, kp . . .

  17. kenny powers Says:

    oh hey – so i just got some medjool dates from the store. what did you say you like to stuff in the center? i remember it sounded redonk.

    i forgot how much i like dates. my mom used to always serve them up at holidays. or maybe it was my grandma which would explain the absence.

  18. voopa Says:

    Man, I bought a cable modem yesterday to replace the dismal-performing one I’ve been renting from Commiecast, and I tell ya, it’s sure nice to have high speed internet again! I feel like I’ve been let out of prison.

  19. kenny powers Says:

    ditto phoammer

  20. Leo Weaver Says:

    evenin’ phoamm. storms rolling in for tonight. nice run of weather in the mountains lately, huh?

    @kp…marscapone cheese. whip some up with cinnamon then put cheese inside date. add an almond to the center for a little crunch. pretty damn tasty

  21. phoammhead Says:

    i’m lmaofffffff . . . . but overall, i don’t know why!

  22. phoammhead Says:

    it’s all good . . . 🙂

  23. kenny powers Says:

    Wowie, I know what I’m getting at the store tomorrow. Already have the almonds. Thanks!

  24. voopa Says:

    Almonds and cable modems?

  25. phoammhead Says:

    i’m whateves . ..

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