One Crazy Summer

8.10.10 - Telluride, CO (G. Lucas)

From Memorial Day through Labor Day, Phish will travel the long and winding road of Summer 2011. Totaling 30 shows right now, and with one more announcement on the horizon, this will be the largest tour the band has undertaken since their return. Granted their are breaks in between the four portions of shows, but when the band plays together this much within a short period of time, magic begins to happen in a different way. Regardless of how well Phish is playing at the time, there is only so far their jamming will go in the context of a 14 show tour like last fall. But when you combine nearly 35 shows within one season of playing, musical trends develop, improvisational themes emerge, and styles of play become crystallized as a portrait of a point in time.

Summer '93 (Pollock)

Think back to the longer tours of the mid-’90s when the band toured incessantly. The iconic months of August ’93, November ’94, and December ’95 didn’t pop out of nowhere, rather they were a direct result of extensive touring and constant improvising night after night after night. And while Summer 2011 can’t replicate the group dynamic that arose over a 54-show fall tour in 1995, the countless shows that comprised the winter, spring and summer of 1993, the number of shows does correlate much more with summer tours of the late ’90s.

Phish’s 1997 Summer Tour consisted of 38 shows (19 in Europe), Summer ’98 equaled 33 shows (9 in Europe), Summer ’99 clocked in 23 shows (3 in Japan), while the band’s Summer Tour of 2000 was comprised of 25 shows (7 in Japan). Add the 30 shows already on this summer’s slate with a few more around Labor Day, and Summer 2011 lands right in the same ball park as many well-loved summers of lore. Over the course of these previous summers, though less so in 2000, distinct jamming styles developed with such focused playing. Could we be looking an earnest stage of musical change this summer? With the tightness, creativity and momentum of Fall Tour and New Year’s Run in tow, alongside successful side-projects from Trey and Mike, the band could be on the brink of quite the memorable season.

7.4.10 - Alpharetta, GA (W.Rogell)

Starting in Bethel, slated through UIC in mid-August, and rumored to end in Colorado around Labor Day, any way you cut it, Summer 2011 is shaping up to be a monster. With that much time on stage together, things will happen that are unplanned, go unspoken, and will bring surprise to everyone, band included. This amount of playing, though broken up into four segments over three months, will still provide a certain density of improvisational minutes unseen by the band since their return. Might we witness some of their most impressive playing thus far in this era? In my opinion, the odds are high. Broken into legs of 18 shows, a three-show festival throwdown, and nine shows, where the treasures will arise is anyone’s guess. And legitimate theories could be posed as to why each of  the three scheduled segments will blow up. Whether it be classic East Coast venues and the most shows at once, a super-sized festival, or the inspiration of west coast nature, each part of summer seems to have its own perks and potential. Pick and choose where you must, but remember, it’s about the shows you hit, not the ones you miss! (Most of the time.)


Jam of the Day:

Twist -> Izabella” 7.31.98 II

A classic summer nugget from Polaris ’98.




7.20.1998 Venura Co. Fairgrounds, Ventura, CA

FLAC Torrent (via etree)Megaupload < Links

Ventura 1998

Highlights of Ventura ’98 include the opening “Bathtub Gin” (Riverport’s little brother), “Drowned -> Makisupa,” a rare appearance of The Who’s “Sea and Sand,” and “Harry Hood.”

I: Bathtub Gin, Dirt, Poor Heart, Lawn Boy, My Sweet One, Birds of a Feather, Theme From the Bottom, Water in the Sky, The Moma Dance, Split Open and Melt

II: Drowned -> Makisupa Policeman > Maze, Sea and Sand, Prince Caspian > Harry Hood

E: Sexual Healing* > Hold Your Head Up, Halley’s Comet


Source:AKG c568eb (OTS, pointed at stacks) -> Aerco Pre-Amp -> Sony D-8 @ 48KHz


521 Responses to “One Crazy Summer”

  1. bhizzle Says:

    Love drinking pre-, during and post- show, but lately I’ve had big touble after I go and have a toke during setbreak. Have to start working on finding that happy medium.

    Who held me during hiatus…MMW, Galactic, Mule

  2. gavinsdad Says:

    pale ales and amber ales and fine, IPAs will be in my basement fridge post Camden. just sayin.

    ugly pig – dont really know gambling protocol. we’re scrappy but i’d like to see a little more faith in your team from ya 😉

  3. EL Duderino Says:

    @ Kaveh

    you have the sbds from Sept. ’03 Warfield run?

  4. KWL Says:

    but you’re right palmer, i doubt i’m bailing. i’ll probably choose all of the above for shows this summer, and slack on my work

  5. KWL Says:

    life is all about priorities, namean?

  6. dognamedwilson Says:

    “msbjivein Says:
    April 19th, 2011 at 1:35 pm
    Was at the panicky the streets show too. Was on top of a building right next to the stage watching the show. That was a first”

    Thats awesome man!

    The cities’ effort to clean up before church Sunday morning is legendary around here. Tons of fans volunteered and there’s even an exhibit at City Hall recalling the accomplishment.

    wow, that was off topic

  7. Mike in Austin Says:

    Palmer? I had the NBA box at MSG in ’02. Do I know you?!

  8. Mr. Palmer Says:

    MIA- not sure. A guy i worked with on the floor of the NYSE, his wife was an employee for the NBA. thats how we got the hook up.

  9. Mr. Palmer Says:

    It is a small world though, damn!

  10. DukeOfLizards Says:

    ^ this kind of shit on the BB kills me

  11. EL Duderino Says:

    hell Palmer and I know the same dude too, so anythings possible

  12. dognamedwilson Says:

    Went to WSP ’00 at Philips Arena (terrible venue for music btw) solo and got ripped off by some wook chick for my extra. In the beer line during setbreak, I had my pocket picked by someone talking up my spun ass.

  13. dognamedwilson Says:

    ^At least thats how I think it happened…

  14. Mr. Palmer Says:

    It also wouldn’t surprise me if the NBA had more than 1 box at MSG. I was with 3 other people and there were probably another 10 in there as well.

  15. msbjivein Says:

    Dog Wilson, I slept in my tent in the parking lot of some church. I was woke up by the mounted police ….not cool. That was a crazy scene though.

  16. Mike in Austin Says:

    Maybe it wasn’t the “NBA” box, but it was the 20 person “Press” box where the announcers are setup and they put all the cameras for the Knicks game.

    There were lots of folks in boxes though, and it was a damn good time. Only met a few other people who had the where-for-all to grab boxes right away.

    Great photos. We had quite the spread. 6 bottles of Cakebread, bottle of Ketel One, Lobsters, etc. $2900 worth of food and liquor was crazy.

  17. msbjivein Says:

    Phish on phans! Set your alarms for 4:20am!!!!

  18. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    would it sway you to hit Camden if I told you I was potentially coming and bringing willowed with me?

  19. Mike in Austin Says:

    We were there with the Dallas band Olospo, and Lumpyhead’s brother.

  20. KWL Says:

    funky chicken? hetty ipas? ok. i’m a tough sell.

  21. Mr. Palmer Says:

    Don’t scare him off @ T3. Is the funky chicken contagious?

  22. Guyute711 Says:

    gdad I haven’t given up on my Sabres yet but Miller has to play better to get the series win. Seems pretty close to me right now.

  23. KWL Says:

    and how could i forget: the weg sub-hoagie face off

  24. Guyute711 Says:

    and I’ll buy you a beer next time I see you if the Flyers can pull it off. Super Ball IX perhaps?

  25. Mr. Palmer Says:

    I thought Willowed was a Super ball vs. Camden deal? Has he reached a decision.

Leave a Reply