12/29 Irish Times Update: $5 Cover Added to Afterparty
Book Cover (Masthay)
I did all I could to throw a free afterparty in New York City, but after negotiations with the owner of the bar, there will need to be a $5 cover charge in order to staff the event—specifically to have someone to run the “book check” so that anyone who purchases a book at the signing can enjoy the show without worrying about its safety. I can assure you that I am not making cent with the afterparty and this is a simple issue of the owner changing his mind after the fact. Nonetheless, $5 in New York City will hardly buy you a dog and a soda on the corner, so come across the street after the 29th show and celebrate a fantastic year of Phish with friends. Music all night long will be provided by provided by Coltrane and friends. The details are below for the sake of repetition:
The Afterparty: Post-show – 3 am – $5 cover charge
Come one, come all!
(Around) Ten Tunes for Friday: 11/18 in Phish History
11.16 / 11.18.94 Michigan Poster
November 18th has been a prolific date in Phish history, as the band performed on this day in the powerhouse years of ’94, ’95, ’96, and ’98. In addition, Phish also kicked of their first fall tour of the modern era in 2009 on this date, but though the “46 Days” and “Disease” were noteworthy, this playlist will consist of the other four shows. In 1994, Phish sat smack dab in the middle of one of the peak months of the mid ’90s, and on the 18th, they took their blistering chops up to Michigan State University in East Lansing for a smoking affair. The following year, Phish was on the second half of a marathon Fall tour when the passed through North Charleston Coliseum for a solid Fall ’95 show with some unreal peaks in. In 1996, November 18th brought the band to Memphis, Tennessee, where they played a phenomenal second set on their at the tail end the end of their Midwestern leg of the tour. And in 1998, the band played one of the first-ever shows at Greenville, South Carolina’s Bi-Lo center, a dark horse mid-week affair that is barely talked about though contains several great jams. When plucking the highlights from this quartet of shows, we are left with quite the Friday playlist! Let’s get right to it.
Phish has played a total of three shows on November 4th in their career from 1990 forward, and as it turns out all three carried quite a bit of meat to them. In Fall of 1990, on Phish’s first true tour, November 4th brought the band to Fort Ram’s Nightclub in Fort Collins, Colorado—a show that circulated widely on Maxells back in the day. The last of a five show Colorado run, the band finished their visit to the Rocky Mountain State in style. Come Fall ’94, Phish wound their way to Onondaga War Memorial Auditorium in Syracuse, New York—the same venue they visited during Fall of 2009. November ’94 is a legendary month in Phish history, and this was the third show. Their last November 4th show came at McNichols Arena in Denver, Colorado, on the heels of Utah’s half-empty “Dark Side” extravaganza. This week’s Friday playlist is assembled solely from these three shows, each spaced four years apart. While perusing the selections, the vast differences in style are obvious as Phish continued to add new aspects to their ever-expanding satchel of sorcery. Enjoy the tunes and the weekend!
The band displayed their Fall ’98 ambient jamming as they migrated from “Frankie Says” into “Bowie.
OLD SCHOOL MEMORIES: Few fans in the present-day Phish community carry the veteran tour experience and perspective of having seen—essentially—the band’s entire career. Some of these old-school tour heads still frequent shows with the same enthusiasm they had twenty years ago, and my friend, Todd, is one of them. Check out his blog, “Back In My Day,” chronicling early show experiences from a different era of Phish. Providing a glimpse into the early scene that so many of us missed as youngsters—he was at Amy’s Farm—Todd’s posts provide vibrant, personal anecdotes of a time gone by, not to mention musical analysis, streaming highlights and downloads of the shows he reviews. When you have some time on your hands, get lost in his writings—they are informative and engaging accounts of shows that many of us just know as analog classics; they are a lot of fun to read! Check it out!
Many enjoyed the focus on one era last Friday, so this week we put the magnifying lens on 1994. Without choosing one particular tour, here is a tasty sampling from the entire year. Enjoy another installment of Ten Tunes, and have a great weekend!
Somehow, this classic New Year’s show hasn’t ever been featured on Phish Thoughts. Now it has. Following an incredible three nights, Phish put the cherry on top in Larry Bird’s joint, The Boston Garden. With a show that brought a classic celebratory vibe, Phish had clearly left taken their deepest dives earlier in the run. The famous hot dog that re-emerged at Big Cypress now resides in The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio.
I: Golgi Apparatus, NICU, Run Like an Antelope*, Glide, Mound, Peaches en Regalia, The Divided Sky, Funky Bitch
II: The Old Home Place, Maze, Bouncing Around the Room, Mike’s Song > Buffalo Bill > Mike’s Song > Yerushalayim Shel Zahav > Weekapaug Groove, Amazing Grace
III: My Sweet One, Also Sprach Zarathustra > Auld Lang Syne > Tropical Hot Dog Night, Chalk Dust Torture, The Horse > Silent in the Morning, Suzy Greenberg, Slave to the Traffic Light
E: Simple > Auld Lang Syne
*Tom Marshall on vocals
Notes: Before the lights went out for the third set, the audience “overheard” the band before the set. Fish wound up saying “I want a jumbo hot dog, large fries and shake” delivered on stage. The band came out, started up My Sweet One, and was interrupted by an announcer asking who ordered the food. The band pointed at Fishman, who looked confused as huge props of a hot dog, fries and shakes descended from the ceiling next to the drum set. The band played 2001 while the hot dog landed. The James Bond Theme was then broadcast over the PA while technicians (wearing “Rocket Scientist” jackets) prepared the hot dog, and the band climbed in with their instruments and flew out over the audience. Various music, including the Captain Beefheart song Tropical Hot Dog Night, was played over the P.A. as the hot dog space ship flew back and forth. This version of Bouncing appears on A Live One.
When thinking of New Year’s Run ’94, people generally think of two things – The Providence Bowie on the 29th and Tropical Hot Dog Night on the 31st. While the odd numbered nights may have stolen history’s spotlight, the 28th and 30th are two shows that routinely get glossed over. Philly’s “Mike’s Groove” and, more specifically New York’s “Tweezer,”nights brought some of the most engaging music of the run, while “Reba” and “Stash”provided first set highlights, respectively. Enjoy the weekend, and best of luck with the rest of the ticket chase.
I: Llama, Guelah Papyrus, Paul and Silas, Harry Hood, Wilson, Chalk Dust Torture, Bouncing Around the Room, It’s Ice, Down with Disease
II: Maze, If I Could, The Oh Kee Pa Ceremony > Suzy Greenberg*, The Landlady*, Julius*, Wolfman’s Brother* > Alumni Blues**, I Wanna Be Like You* > Hold Your Head Up*, Cavern*
E: Magilla*, Amazing Grace
* w/ Giant Country Horns (Carl “Geerz” Gerhard on trumpet, Dave “The Truth” Grippo on alto sax, Chris Peterman on tenor sax, Mike Gallick on baritone sax, Don Glasgo on trombone, and Joey Sommerville on trumpet)
DOWNLOADS OF THE WEEKEND:
Apologies for Friday. One unexcused absence for Miner. Here we have two shows from Canada at the beginning of Spring ’94. Enjoy the three-day weekend. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. – respect.
As we prepare for Indio’s Festival 8 blowout, this weekend we take look back at Laguna Seca Daze, a multi-band California festival Phish headlined 15 years ago. These shows in Monterey followed up three outstanding nights at San Francisco’s Warfield Theatre, and featured outstanding playing throughout. The first night boasts the hearty chunk of “Tweezer > Lifeboy, Reba” in the middle of the second set, and a Les Claypool sit-in for “You Enjoy Myself.” The second night contained in improvisational highlights in “Bowie,”Split” and “Antelope.” Enjoy the weekend, Indio is less than a month away!
A beloved tradition started fifteen years ago in Glens Falls, NY. Phish hadn’t played a Halloween show since 1991, having been in the studio the previous two autumns recording Rift (1992) and Hoist (1993). But in 1994, the band upped the ante. Via Doniac Schvice, their newsletter, Phish announced that the show would contain three sets, but that wasn’t all. Along with an audience costume contest, Phish would don a “musical costume” of their own, covering an entire album of another band. And there was yet another twist- they were leaving to the fans to vote on the album, and they would play the most popular choice. Many have since debated whether or not Phish went with the actual winner or selected between the most popular, but nonetheless, it brought the entire community into the process.
During the weeks leading up to the show, fans drooled with anticipation, constantly hypothesizing on which album would be selected. The leading contenders were thought to be Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, Frank Zappa’s Joe’s Garage, and The Beatles’ self-titled record known as “The White Album.” The other mystery hovering around the 8,000 person show was that no one knew when the album would be played; there was no precedent and nothing had been announced. So when Phish took the stage at 10:15 for their first set, everyone was on the edge of their seats.
Ripping into the holiday-appropriate “Frankenstein,” the game began. An extended “Simple” and a poignant “Divided Sky” anchored the beginning of the set, when unsuspectingly, the band dropped into “Harpua!” With the opening “Oom Pah Pahs” many thought that the forthcoming narration would bring out the cover album. As the Halloween story progressed, encompassing the “Vibration of Life” and the “Vibration of Death,” Jimmy stepped to his record player. Seemingly on the brink of history, the story took a left turn as Jimmy put on a Barney album- but accidentally had placed the record on backwards. And as the record spun in reverse, Phish played what Jimmy heard- twenty second of Black Sabbath’s “War Pigs.” A classic moment in its own right, the cover would have to wait. But before ending the set, Phish carved out room for one of the thickest, most emotional “Rebas” ever played. In 1994, the year that “Reba” shone the brightest, this version is one of my favorites.
During setbreak, the obvious conversation piece was the album. Would it come in the second or third set? Which one would it be?! The answer came soon enough. At midnight, the band took the stage, and through the PA the audience heard the opening heartbeats of Dark Side of the Moon, drawing howls and cheers from much of the crowd. But suddenly the heartbeat stopped, and the voice of Ed Sullivan came from nowhere introducing The Beatles. Over the recorded squeals and screams of teeny boppers thirty years ago, Phish broke into “Back in the U.S.S.R.” It took a minute to hit everyone that they were about to cover the entire double-album, but one song at a time, over the next 90 minutes, that is exactly what they did.
Glens Falls Civic Center
While the band played most of “The White Album’s” songs earnestly and accurately, they wouldn’t have been Phish if they didn’t add a little of their own flavor. By modifying the end of “Helter Skelter” with a barbershop quartet ending, changing the “fool on the hill” in “Glass Onion” to “Guyute the pig,” and adding some Electrolux to “Why Don’t We Do It in the Road?,” Phish dappled the album with spots of Phishiness. Other interpretive moments included Mike’s bluegrass take of “Don’t Pass Me By” and a now-classic rendition of “Revolution 9″, when upon the concluding line, “You become naked,” Fishman lifted his frock over his head and pranced around nude while Page, Mike, and Trey blew bubbles and chanted behind him. This bizarre moment was forever immortalized in the booklet of liner notes for “A Live One”- page 11.
But aside from these moments, Phish’s performance was incredibly reverent, playing each song true to form. The only onstage flirtation Phish had with The White Alum was an “Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da” jam- not even the whole song- hence the band learned each and every one of the albums 30 songs. Several appeared sporadically throughout the years, but “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”- the song that stood out at Glens Falls- was adopted into the band ever-expanding catalog of covers. The band stepped offstage at 1:30 am, to the recorded version of “Good Night.” But the night was hardly over.
About a half -hour later, Phish reemerged to a venue of mind-blown fans, some who had dozed off during the break. The band could have come out and played a five minute encore and the show would still be talked about in the annals of Phish history. But instead, they opened set three with an extended journey through a menacing “David Bowie”- this was Halloween after all! And after a “Bouncin” interlude, the band resolved the immense darkness of “Bowie” with a magnificent mid-set “Slave.” Bordering on absurdity, especially with the timing of everything, Phish raged on. The band closed the set with a smoking “Antelope” only to start the audience costume contest during the encore! After a “Mound” Bar won the competition, the band chose “Squirming Coil” to end one of the most epic nights of their career. There would be many more, but this one was special.
And there started the Halloween tradition that we will rekindle so soon in Indio. Following up the White Album with The Who’s Quadrophenia in 1995 (another double album),Talking Head’s Remain In Light in 1996, and Velvet Underground’s Loaded in 1998- Phish firmly established the musical costume as one of their most loved annual rites. Halloween became a big as New Years Eve on the Phish calender, though the band never found their way back to October 31st after ’98′s Vegas escapade. But in2009, the year everything is coming back together- Halloween returns!
A perfect piece to take us into the weekend, this gorgeous jam came in a forgotten first set at Portland Meadows in ’99. An ideal tempo, the open-air sound, and some heart-tugging playing by Trey will have you grooving at your desk, cubicle, or wherever you may be. Some feel good Phish took for a Friday, this one will make you smile.
This show has always lived in the shadow of The Gorge’s two-night stand that came directly before. But with the “Gin” posted above and a monster second set, this show has plenty to offer. One of the most psychedelic “Ghosts” of the year kicked off this five song second set to the tune of 20 plus minutes. After this night we walked away with more than a few memories too go along with our black boogers.
I: First Tube, Poor Heart, Mozambique, Bathtub Gin, Get Back on the Train, My Mind’s Got a Mind of its Own, Frankie Says, Birds of a Feather, Lawn Boy, Possum
II: Ghost > Runaway Jim , Roggae, Also Sprach Zarathustra > You Enjoy Myself