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. bearito Says:

    Miner, you slanging the book at the poster show in AC?

  2. Multibeast Says:

    “Let’s sell out Woostah east coasters! I want dat stream!!!”

  3. snow Says:

    Looking forward to seeing you @Leo. I’ve told you I was going a couple times… stoner phuck. 😉 And hopefully meet Palmer and others.

    I’m dying for Saw it Again. I will go ape shit crazy rocking if played and probably hurt myself (hopefully not others).

  4. lumpyhead Says:


  5. snow Says:

    No way they stream Woostah. too much pressure for the band, imo.

  6. Exree Hipp Says:

    I used to think Saw It Again was literally the worst Phish song ever written. I still feel it’s awful but now appreciate its placement during certain moods they reach on stage. Especially appreciated the 6/27/10 medley.

    But man I gave it the hardest eye roll of all time when they broke into it back in the 90s. I remember hearing it at 11/29/97 and just wanting to turn the band off for three minutes.

  7. Guyute711 Says:

    After streaming the Mule shows it just seemed to translate better than the Phish streams I have watched. There are a lot of factors that could cloud my judgement but that was my honest opinion. If they feel pressure from a stream that’s bogus. Steve Winwood was streamed and he absolutely slayed.

  8. angryjoggerz Says:

    Saw it Again is very high on my list too

    Saw it Again
    major Waves at Blossom

  9. snow Says:

    meeting people at the show is still going solo in my book.

    I started a BB GroupMe group for AC. I couldn’t resist.

    If you want to know want groupme is:

    If you want to be added, send phone # or email to:
    snow bank bb at geemail

    basically: it’s a group text function. You can have it txt you or install the app and get messages through that. expect lots of messages (hopefully rambling ones from spunions), so don’t sign up if you are worried about getting too many txt’s.

  10. angryjoggerz Says:

    and some slow jams like FEFY

  11. dorn76 Says:

    Troy is no Stevie fuckin’ Winwood.

  12. dorn76 Says:

    I don’t know what I mean by that, just seemed apt.

  13. tela'smuff Says:

    add Shafty to my list. and Fikus. maybe a jammed out Tomorrow’s Song, Spread it Round.

    i’ve seen these, but drool at the possiblities

    Discern>My Left Toe>Waves>My Left Toe

  14. Grooves Says:

    I know how you feel. There are just some covers they play that should have been left on the shelf, or better yet on the original band’s record. 08/03/98: After having our insides turned into our outsides by the debut of Rhinoceros followed by the end all be all of any Comet ever played, the boys dropped a mid-set Ride Captain Ride for the first time in almost 500 shows. Seriously!?!?! I don’t even like the original of that song…lol

  15. Kaveh Says:

    @miner: check your email. thansks.

  16. Grooves Says:

    LOL!!! My mistake! I was mistaking Saw it Again as cover for a minute…

  17. Grooves Says:

    Ride Captain still blew in the middle of that Creek set though…lol

  18. Guyute711 Says:

    Troy only wishes he could have written Back in the High Life Again. What a tool.

  19. Exree Hipp Says:

    Not a cover, but still, I agree with you on every other point.

  20. poop goblin Says:

    How bout a cow funk’d Cool It Down!

  21. bearito Says:

    6.29.00 Birds>Catapult is the shiznit

    Fierce Trey loops of the $$$ variety

  22. tzara's Says:

    @exree, did all of leg 2 ’11 (not a big run admittedly). Had the wife at the Gorge, and even the parents in the house for night 1. Rest of the time I traveled alone (except for a bus ride with Alf and Silly) then hooked up in the town.

    Reason I can’t do this year is they won’t come near me. Bill Graham seems like a tough ticket. Denver depends on the grapes not getting ripe too soon.

  23. poop goblin Says:

    Caught the clapton and winwood tour

    Kinda shocking when you first notice Winwood’s also a beast on the strat.

  24. Jtran Says:

    Getting vegas wolfman’d over here

  25. dorn76 Says:

    Any tunes off Waiting for Columbus would be most welcomed.

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