Summer’s Swan Song?

The Gorge '09 (Graham Lucas)

Phish added one more piece to their massive summer puzzle of 2011 yesterday, announcing a dream-like West Coast stint at the beginning of August and a three-pack to follow at Chicago’s UIC Pavilion—a venue rich in Phish history. Totaling 30 shows for the summer at this point, the season’s most recent addition looks to be the most intriguing leg of all. And adding a twist to things, the band worded their announcement ambiguously—they did not state that these would be the final shows of summer, nor did they say that there would be another announcement—leaving many fans wondering if UIC marks the end of the road.

Hollywood Bowl - Los Angeles

Could Red Light possibly wait for another cycle of on-sales to release more dates? Yes. In fact, in response to an email inquiry about any further shows, Red Light respectfully wrote back “We are considering a small amount of dates around Labor Day, but will be a minute before they are confirmed.” Really? Let’s look at the situation here. August’s tour had been rumored to travel back to the East Coast, hitting venues such as Hartford, SPAC and Jones Beach. But with a supersaturation of Northeast Phish shows this summer, and only one of them sold out, perhaps management nipped those in the bud and replaced them with a Labor Day run. Perhaps Labor day will be in Colorado. But let’s throw speculation out the window for now and look at what is officially on the books, because this run looks to be the peak of the summer!

After one year off, the band will return to The Gorge on August 5th and 6th to kick off the second leg of Summer Tour. Opening up on the most stunning stage of in nation, get ready for two nights of wide-open Phish jams like only The Gorge can provide! After a quick day off, on August 8th Phish will finally play the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles for the first time in their career after years of ongoing rumors. With a capacity of 17,376 (and The Gorge’s 20,000+), nobody should have any problems finding tickets to the first three nights of tour. But the next couple might be different.

Harvey's - Lake Tahoe

Fans will hit the road immediately after the Hollywood Bowl show, because the very next day Phish will arrive in Lake Tahoe on the California / Nevada border for a two-night stand at Harvey’s Casino make-shift 7,000 person amphitheatre on August 9th and 10th. Located in a leftover parking lot with bleacher seating at the back, Harvey’s Outdoor Amphitheatre may prove to be a bit more difficult to grab tickets for. Though the venue, itself, may be a bit roughshod, Phish will visit another beacon of West Coast nature in Lake Tahoe, and fans will enjoy two days in mountains with rental properties and hotels on the lake during a spectacular time of year.

Following another day off, Phish will head from Tahoe to San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park to headline the city’s Outside Lands festival on Friday, August 12th. Headlining the other two nights will be Muse and Arcade Fire, and though the schedule has yet to be released, you can check out the full lineup here. And there’s still rumor floating that the band will also play a solo show at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco the following night.

UIC '98 (Pollock)

Phish may bookend a summer that will open with three shows at Bethel Woods with three shows at UIC Pavilion in Chicago. These shows will mark the band’s first return to UIC’s intimate environs since a legendary three-night stand during Fall ’98. Phish also played two standout shows at UIC  in 1994—6.18 and 11.25—and will undoubtedly add to their legacy with a three-pack that could close out the touring season. Moving into Chicago’s gritty, undersized venue for the final nights of summer with a tour’s worth of momentum is the recipe for the perfect storm; an end-of-tour blowout of the highest degree.

Tickets requests are now open for an unusually long, two-week period ending April 25 at 11:59 am est. The Gorge and Tahoe are full General Admission shows and cost only $50 each. The Hollywood Bowl has tiered pricing at $60 and $45 for reserved seating only, and UIC will be $60 for reserved seats or GA floor.


Jam of the Day:

Sneakin’ Sally” 8.7.09 II

A gem from Phish’s last visit to The Gorge.




11.7.98 UIC Pavilion, Chicago, Illinois

FLAC Torrent (via etree), Megaupload < Links

UIC 1998

My favorite of the three nights in ’98, primarily because of the other-wordly improvisation that took place within “AC/DC Bag > Ghost.” Secondary reasons include a blissful, classic “Reba” and a darkhorse “Mike’s that gets the show underway with some dirty funk grooves. During an awesome fall tour, the shows at UIC were among the best, and they are all available for download in Phish Thoughts’ Audio Archive.

I. My Soul, Mike’s Song > Driver, Brian and Robert, The Wedge, Limb By Limb, Fikus, Billy Breathes, Beauty of My Dreams, Weekapaug Groove

II. AC/DC Bag -> Ghost, Reba, Farmhouse

E: Guyute, While My Guitar Gently Weeps

Source: Flacs: Audio Technica 815 (shotguns) > Sony SBM-1 > DAT (@ 48 kHz), MP3s: Schoeps


656 Responses to “Summer’s Swan Song?”

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  1. tela'smuff Says:

    first. and i thought i was gonna take a break……

    this is making sense now. Labor Day shows in Colorado. Question is, will it include DMB???? I hope not, but dammit, I’ll take Phish in CO anyway I can get em.

  2. garretc Says:

    Dammit tela’s! Just when I’d forgotten DMB rumors even existed…

  3. tela'smuff Says:

    ha. sorry man. RLM has an office in Denver. Unless they play solo at RR or Broomfield. But I’ll bet they do that rumored DMB/Phish fest. That could be interesting to say the least.

  4. Prince Nabby Says:

    Can you bring me up to speed on this DMB/Phish fest please? I hadn’t heard of that. (Been out of the loop . . .)

  5. Prince Nabby Says:

    fest rumor, that is . . .

  6. voidboy Says:


  7. BowieHunter Says:

    wtf!#@$.. the 7th was the WORST of the 3 nights. The divided sky is Phish Magic @ it’s finest. People were in tears! and the show lacked any real momentum. the NEXT two nights however, were better than Hampton ’98. real. and thats what PHISH should have released that year. I have no doubt that those THREE INDOOR SHOWS in the middle of summer will be a BLAZING BALL OF FIRE! but c’mon. vacationing in the creek and valley is what the midwest is all about in the summer. i’m cool with them taking the fall off but i would love to see summer run late then. What is fall really? Oct-Nov? two months? cool. and the SOUND at UIC is like none-other! really wish i was home for that.. 🙁

  8. BowieHunter Says:

    i meant the divided sky the last night. and the show on the 7th lacked any real momentum.

  9. beepaphone Says:

    2nd set 11/7/98 is pretty much nothing but hot fire, IMO.

  10. Bad Nirvana Cover Band Says:

    11/7/98 ‘AC/DC Bag>Ghost’ = WAY too jammy.

  11. beepaphone Says:

    Right. Fucking white boys noodling and shit.

  12. tela'smuff Says:

    the Bag>Ghost is what defines UIC ’98 for me. Although the RnR was good on the 8th.

  13. YborCity Says:

    “and rose reincarnate in the ghostly clothes of jazz in the goldhorn shadow of the band and blew the suffering of America’s naked mind for love into an eli eli lamma lamma sabacthani saxophone cry that shivered the cities down to the last radio.”

    I am Howling. I am sprinting through IT and savoring every instance. Get me to a Phish show. Let me think quietly on a porch watching the cars go by. IT is now, IT was yesterday, IT will happen again tomorrow – if you let it.

    Enjoy Spring. It comes once a year and you’d hate to miss it.

  14. YborCity Says:

    “Now, man, that alto last night had IT – he held it once he found it… Up to him to put down what’s on everybody’s mind. He starts the first chorus, then lines up his ideas … and then he rises to his fate and has to blow equal to it. All of a sudden somewhere in the middle of the chorus he GETS IT – everybody looks up and knows; they listen; he picks it up and carries. Time stops. He’s filling empty space with the substance of our lives .. He has to blow across bridges and come and do it with such infinite feeling soul-exploratory for the tune of the moment that everybody knows it’s not the tune that counts but IT – ”


  15. YborCity Says:

    There you have it, and – once you do – IT carries you away.

  16. hislittlecatposternutbag Says:

    LOVE the quotes…8 boring hours of slow work, and it all melts away..
    interested to see if there are more dates to come. i am not geographically or financially favored by dates so far. i WILL see some phish, just hard decisions to make right now….
    haha, DMB/phish. it’s not so bad as anyone thinks. they always do what they want. and if that is what is, whatever. still be beautiful. bruce springsteen in ’09 played with for three songs at bonnaroo, did not have the good grace to play a phish song, and was a generally iffy guest.(tons of boos too ha). but it was all good of course. and so it will be. don’t be scared of DMB scene, YOU will be there to have your own experience, plus betcha $$$ it doesn’t happen

  17. RandomReader Says:

    Morning, BBers. I’m uploading two more matrices that I’ve made of June ’09 to Mediafire, and would love to share links with anyone who’d like them. We have the late-night set at Bonnaroo and the smokin’ Camden show, in addition to the Jones Beach 1 that I put up a few weeks ago. I can’t post directly b/c these are sbd/aud mixes, but if you email me at I’ll send you a link to the mediafire folder where I’m putting these up. I plan to keep working my way through June ’09, producing what to my ears are considerable upgrades over those crummy LivePhish boards. Peace.

  18. hislittlecatposternutbag Says:

    looking over he comments from yesterday…

    “it does suck though that kids can’t really drive these tours anymore.
    either that or kids these days just have access to stronger stimulants. cuz driving across the country is half the fuckin fun.

    I’m old and work too fuckin hard but would fuckin love the chance to drive cross the country catchin a whole tour again

    a shame they are making that impossible. the touring aspect was a big aspect of how the music developed through the 90′s.

    still happy I’m flying to some sick ass shows
    works for me”

    fo, sho.

    about us younger generation…yeah, nobody my age can get a job. no jobs. and tour is set up for phish, not fans. takes alot of dollars for 3.0. so even for the most fanatical, realistically may be impossible. facing a dollars decision definitely. (yay, onomatopoeia). it’s gonna be a great phish summer, oh yes. but unfortunately not everyone will be able to do what they desire, for money, family, etc.

    also, just throwing it out there, furthur has toured constantly since their inception. and phil just turned 71. those boys just want to play. don’t hate me! food for thought, zero aspersions cast. i am grateful for every note of 3point0

  19. kenny powers Says:

    @ RandomReader


  20. willowed Says:

    I have some great news for this summer. I will e-mail you later.

  21. Mr palmer Says:

    Random- can we find on the ‘noid? Like the JB one? Great work on upgrading these shows. Thanks.

  22. rivertrance Says:


    Bag > ghost

    Defines that run. Def my fav

  23. Mr palmer Says:

    3 song second set! I don’t count Farmhouse .

  24. Spike2518 Says:

    Saw it again!!! 🙂

  25. rivertrance Says:


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