Going Alone

If you find yourself with a ticket to a show this summer, but nobody to go with, just go, because who knows what could happen.

I’ve only arrived to one Phish show alone—11.17.97—and it fundamentally changed the course of my life. I graduated in Spring ’97 and come Fall, my closest show-going cohorts of ’95 and ’96 were off doing other things. Thus, Fall ’97 represented a transition in my Phish life. I planned to do different parts of the tour with different friends, and I was planning on going to the Denver shows with my non-Phish buddy, Leaguer. After a particularly hectic first night, suffice it to say, he had no desire to go back to the circus. Thus, I brewed up some mushroom tea at his Boulder apartment, put it in a Nalgene bottle for the show and headed down to Denver on my own.

I had a floor ticket for the evening, but when I went to my seat, I noticed plenty open up ahead. I walked up a section or two and found an aisle seat, asked if it was taken and sat down. As is usually the case, these guys told me they weren’t in their seats either, but I was welcome to stay there. We talked before the show for a while, officially meeting each other. Then the lights dropped and the infamous first set started with “Tweezer.” Taking gargantuan Phish jams to the dome one after another, we all bounced behind the seats into the larger space in between sections and blew it up. After the set ended, a bunch of their friends found their way to the floor and I met a series of people that I would never remember the next day, let alone the next hour. I hung out with the original two people I had met for the whole show, said good bye and went on my way back to Leaguer’s.

Fast-forward to Cleveland two weeks later. In a story far too absurd to get into, I broke away from the girl I went to the show found a platform to rage on my own. In the middle of the first set someone surprised me by saying my name and passing me a bowl. I turned around, not recognizing the person at all, and he explained that he had met me back in Denver during setbreak. Things immediately made sense and we hung out and raged the set together. For reasons still to absurd to get into, I had every desire to find some some new people to hang out with, and joined them behind the stage during setbreak to puff joints. I re-met the same guy and girl—Jon and Sarah—that I sat next to in Denver. I continued meeting people from their extensive group of friends—all from their hometown—and I got along well with all of them. I wound up hanging out with some form of their group of friends for the next couple shows before they hopped off. Good peeps.

Fast Forward to Europe ’98. Jon—the original guy I met in Denver—was spending the summer in Prague, and we met up at The Grey Hall on the first night of tour in Copenhagen. As we introduced each other to our respective friends, one of the guys I met that night became my tour comrade and co-psychonaut through 2009, and one of the girls I met became my wife. Ever since that Europe tour, I, more or less, merged with their extensive group of friends for the duration of 1.0, 2.0, beyond Phish tour, and still to this day.

SO…if you don’t have a partner in crime for any given Phish show this summer, you should go anyway—you just might find your wife!



Everyone was a noob at one point, and we all sought information about the scene from anywhere and everywhere. Just recently, fan, Brent Nichols, sent me a link to “Phish: A Guide For Beginners” that he had written. If you’re reading this blog, odds are you don’t need to read his, but his piece serves as a great resource for that person in your life who just won’t listen to you about your favorite band. Check it out…

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357 Responses to “Going Alone”

  1. Multibeast Says:

    I would love to hear a Gumbo go deep. The recent live bait and other miner picks of this tune have obviously peaked my interest in hearing it live again.

  2. Jtran Says:

    Chalkdust Reprise

  3. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    “Has enough time passed that a first set TTE might not be the worst thing in the world? Or would it still suck?”

    It would suck even more because it would be sloppy as fuck. No way they’ve practiced that in a while.

  4. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    DWD Reprise

  5. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    Jtran, it’s not too late to hit AC.

  6. Mr. Palmer Says:

    Never heard a Tela in 19 years.. Have yet to see a Stealing Time either, interestingly enough..

    What i really want though is TMWSIY, My Left Toe, or a What’s the Use.

  7. Leo Weaver Says:

    Will do @palmer…what’s your email addy? Just me and G7 from our crew. His roommate is going as is one of my old crew, picking him up in DC Thursday night. We should be rolling in around noon. I think I’ll have everything taken care of, but will let you know via email.

    @robear…I had it on my smart phone calendar, just entered it as the wrong day. We’ll call that operator error. But I DO have another tasty lunch to look forward to tomorrow!

    Snowbank at AC? Awesome.

  8. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    Seen all the 3.0 What’s the Uses, if they ever play My Left Toe again (and I’m there) I will freak out.

  9. tela'smuff Says:

    never pleased with a TTE, but that’s my taste.

    @AJ – each tour, two or three tunes get the special treatment. this summer i’d like to see 3-4 versions of Melt, Stash, and Bowie go real deep. my “Songs Not Seen” list is pretty small at this point. Still need to get a Dinner & a Movie, FYF, and Dog Log. Those would be maybe the most realistic that I could catch.

  10. Leo Weaver Says:

    My wish? Either ____ jam>WTU or ____ jam>MLT.

  11. BingosBrother Says:

    I wanna hear a new song that isn’t in a play.

  12. BTB Says:

    Holding onto a Truck Reprise

  13. The Phisher King Says:

    I have to say over the years I have been to many shows by myself (probably 10 since 94?), and I kinda like doing it sometimes for just the reasons Miner pointed out. Each time I go alone, I never end up alone, I always meet peeps and many of them I am still in contact with and catch shows with. It always makes me laugh when my non-Phish friends look at me and say, your traveling half way across the country to see a band… ALONE!? Then I try to explain, Im sure I’ll run into somebody, I won’t be “alone” actually. So, I agree, I think you should do it sometime, you’ll most likely broaden your group of phreinds and maybe meet someone that will change your life!

  14. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    This tour needs Ocelot, gooey as funk buried as the cool-down tune in set 2.

  15. Multibeast Says:

    For all you fanny pack fans out there, this one seems ideal for cruising the lot.

  16. BTB Says:

    My Left Tow Truck > Horn > Slave to the Traffic Light

    Dome Light > Scent of a Mustang > Walls of the Corsica

  17. BTB Says:

    Nice Jammy Pack!!

    Now I can spin the Miami Piper whilst schwilling an ice cold Sammy

  18. voopa Says:

    6/7/12 Set II

    Something’s Coming (West Side Story) >
    76 Trombones
    Memory (Cats)
    Suddenly Seymour
    Music of the Night
    If Ever I would Leave You
    Bali Hai->
    HYHU > If I Only Had a Brain > HYHU
    Circle of Life>
    Show of Life

    Encore: SOAMule > If I Were a Rich Man > Mule

  19. Calpain Says:

    Steam and 20 Yrs Later need some extended jam love from troy. mark it!

  20. voopa Says:

    EII: You’ll Never Walk Alone

  21. Multibeast Says:

    “My Left Tow Truck > Horn > Slave to the Traffic Light

    Dome Light > Scent of a Mustang > Walls of the Corsica”


  22. Bwana Says:

    Gillian Welch’s show last night was great! Line of the night by Dave Rawlings, “yeah, we start out slow and then it gets even slower…” Lots of soul and blues with those two that somehow is still very uplifting… Such presence in Gillian’s voice and Dave’s lead guitar. Easy to see why Mike wanted to give her a nod last year… And they played The Way it Goes in their first set.

    Cool post today Miner. I should do more solo trips as the one’s I have done have made me feel like a lucky sob. Dayton ’97, timed it with a cross-country move. Desert Sky ’98 and Dark Side ’98, working as ranger in Utah. Las Cruces ’99, no one nearby to go with. Even back in the day, I’d always run into someone familiar, but I agree with others sentiments, it’s nice to not be accountable sometimes and just enter the flow…

    Can’t wait to jump on couch tour this Thursday. No real shows till SPAC for this west coaster…

  23. viola Says:

    bingosbrother: saturday alpine i got a few seats page side up close. you are invited to crash that row with me…. row s i think. anyways, that tree in the grass over there is a great spot. caught the dead reunion in 02 over in that vicinity. that was one of my best alpine shows ever. dear AW, got email?

  24. chris Says:

    i likie the idea of a gooey jammed out ocelot ..its been too long coming

  25. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    What Nothing from OKlahoma?!?!?

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