Play Ball!

Fenway Park - Boston, MA

Fenway Park - Boston, MA

With a timely announcement coming on Opening Day of Major League Baseball’s 2009 season, Phish confirmed the rumor that they will start their summer tour at Boston’s Fenway Park on May 31st.  After a stint in the minors in ’04 at Coney Island’s Keyspan Park, Phish is being called up to the bigs to open up the ’09 season!  Another video announcement highlighted the unique features of the historic ballpark at 4 Yawkey Way, as a camera perused the ornate detail of the Boston shrine. The imagery was backed by Fenway’s organ playing “Take Me Out To The Ballgame,” yet when the song ended, the camera flashed to the organ player who cracked his knuckles and readied himself before delving into a baseball-infused rendition of “Tweezer Reprise!”  Merging America’s two favorite pastimes, the interpretive cover played for the rest of the video as images of the ballpark graced the screen.  With an artistic preview of the stadium that they will soon demolish, Phish once again, infused the community with unparalleled adrenaline and excitement.

It seems that a week cannot go by without another significant development in the Phish world.  Whether it is ticket on sales, added shows, or tour planning, Phish 3.0 is officially under way!  With the addition of Fenway, Phish will play the first real stadium show of their career in one of the smallest and most storied yards in the land.  With a capacity of just under 40,000 without the field, this shouldn’t be the hardest ticket of the summer, but these days that’s not saying much.  But the intriguing question of what lucky fan will pull Fenway’s single red seat amidst a sea of green remains to be answered.

Fenway Box Office (C.Harris)

Fenway Box Office (C.Harris)

People have already begun to speculate if this will mark the beginning of the stadium Phish era, and I’ve got to say I seriously doubt it.  If there is one thing that this summer’s slate has proven to us, it is that Phish 3.0 will play where they want and when they want.  They are choosing only their favorite locations, regardless of size, and booking them.  I don’t think that this show has any predictive value in terms of where Phish will play in the future- they simply wanted to play Fenway.  And to be honest, this show just jumped to the top of the must-see shows list of the summer.  Fenway or The Fox?  Oh, the decisions!  Directly connected to their renewed mission of putting music first, the band is taking liberty in playing unique venues that will inspire them.  I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again- no band can match their music to their surroundings like Phish, and with so many diverse surroundings comprising this summer, the band should respond in diverse and dynamic fashions.  From The Fox to Bonnaroo, and from Asheville Civic Center to Fenway, this summer will be sprinkled with some of the most unique Phish shows in a long time.

In addition to the huge summer kick off party at Fenway, Phish also tacked on a third Jones Beach show on Tuesday June 2nd, increasing the summer total to 27!  With these additional dates, it sure seems like the band is as excited for the summer as we are.  With a night off in between the first and second Jones Beach show, Phish will stick to their practice of not playing more than four nights in a row- a pattern that will assist everyone involved.

Fenway Park at Twilight

Fenway Park at Twilight

Armed with a new album and a renewed sense of purpose, May 31st represents the the turning of the next page.  Hampton was where the band got their sea legs back with concise, direct jamming, and Fenway is when the Phish will begin to swim the ocean waters again.  In one of the most exciting locales of their career, you can be sure the band will come out in Boston ready to conquer the world once again.

With only two months to go, Summer ’09 is shaping up to be quite the special season- not only because Phish is playing again, but because they are playing exclusively great venues.  Meaningful for their role in the Phish history, or their own place in cultural history, these venues were chosen with utmost care and creativity, creating the most diverse tour in ages.  Fenway, Red Rocks, The Gorge, The Fox, Asheville Civic, Bonnaroo, Deer Creek, Alpine, Merriweather, SPAC- the list goes on and on.  It all sounds to good to be true.  But truth be told, with the band playing in center field, Fenway will become our very own field of dreams.

***

Tickets requests for Fenway and Jones Beach can be made here now through this Sunday, April 12th at midnight Eastern.  Fenway tickets will go on sale through eTix, which looks very likely to crash on Saturday, April 18th at 10 am Eastern.  Jones Beach’s new first show goes on sale Friday, April 17th at 10 am Eastern via Live Nation.

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DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

7.2.98 The Grey Hall, Christiana, Copenhagen, DK < LINK

7.2.98 The Grey Hall, Christiana, Copenhagen, DK < TORRENT LINK

phish-copenhagen-98“Ghost > Jim > Caspian, YEM”- the four song second set.  With the most cohesive frame of Europe ’98, Phish closed the curtain on their three nights of magic at The Grey Hall.  The improv throughout this set was phenomenal, highlighted by “Ghost” and “YEM.” Throw in a first set versions of “Theme” and “Fluffhead” with the debuts of “Meat” and “Fikus,”all in a Scandinavian barn, and you’ve got quite the show.  Check it out; it’s one to be considered strongly by Live Phish for release!

I: Birds of a Feather, Cars Trucks Buses, Theme From the Bottom, Brian and Robert, Meat*, Fikus*, Shafty, Fluffhead, Ginseng Sullivan, Punch You in the Eye, Character Zero

II: Ghost > Runaway Jim > Prince Caspian, You Enjoy Myself

E: Simple

*debut

Source: Schoeps MK4 (FOB; mics in a hat) > VMS IO2b > KCY > DA P1 recorded@ 48

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286 Responses to “Play Ball!”

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  1. spideyguy0 Says:

    If they keep the past setup intact the red seat will be behind the stage and covered, but Fenway is the most epic Phish venue ever!

  2. Al Says:

    I told you the silence was suspicious. With this venue, Phish made it possible for everyone to get a ticket…

  3. hairy pood Says:

    ^^But the intriguing question of what lucky fan will pull Fenway’s single red seat amidst a sea of green remains to be answered.

    I guess spidey guy beat me to it, but he’s right. It is very unlikely that there will be bleacher seating. also, not trying to nitpick, but there are large sections of red seats closer to the infield. Regardless, its going to be great. I remember sitting 2nd row next to 1st base when Mo Vaughan was playing for the Sox. killer.

    AND, regarding the single red seat in the bleachers, I actually got that ticket once. I was going to a game with my family about 15 years ago (when sox tickets were still cheap), and my Dad bought all our tickets from a street scalper for just over face (which means they were still under $20 a pop, bleacher seats used to be real cheap), and we got to the seats, and I had the red bleacher seat! definitely a memorable evening. I plan on flying out for the fenway show, to watch it with my dad and brother. it will be my dad’s first show (he’s an old school deadhead) and the third one my brother and I will get to see together.

    They get on me wanna know Hank
    why do you drink?
    (Hank) why do you roll smoke?
    Why must you live out the songs that you wrote?
    over and over
    everybody made my prediction
    so if i get stoned
    I’m just carryin’
    on an old family tradition

    I like Jr.’s Dad a lot more, and his son too, but the lyric was to good to pass up.

  4. hairy pood Says:

    (too good) two good[s]? to good!!!

  5. hairy pood Says:

    ^ I wrote those before I even got to the download of the day. great pick. I’ve been listening to those Christiania shows for the last few nights. Just wish I could’ve been there then. Anyone who has visited Christiania knows it is a magical place, and we all know that Phish brings their own, and adds to the magic wherever they go. Was this pick chosen based on the look at how they’re strictly playing at “exclusively great venues?” because it fits that theme perfectly.

    over and out

  6. c0wfunk Says:

    what an opening day!

    mets win with their new bullpen playing a starring role
    yankees lose with their new ace looking like a joker
    phillies lose home opener (braves couldn’t possibly lose too)

    and phish is playing fenway!

    oh happy day!

  7. c0wfunk Says:

    this is off topic, but I’ve been involved with the Moog Foundation almost since its inception, and this is a huge moment for us..

    http://www.citizen-times.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2009904070321

  8. Baxter Says:

    Mr. Miner,
    Thank you for hitting one out of the ballpark with your “rumor” prediction of the Fenway show. I’ve got to say, I heard it hear first, and well over a month ago you got the date right on. Write on man!

    c u in bahston, bro.

  9. camman Says:

    The fenway Vid gave me Goosebumps, i only wish it wasn’t the Day after i graduate becuase ther is no way i can make it to that show… oh well, i’ll be booging in spirit with every one in Baston! Since the band is palying Fenway, does that means they prolly won’t play Worecester again?

  10. camman Says:

    and i dont think its Fenway anymore, on May 31st it’ll be Phenway

  11. teamearth Says:

    Miner, what do you mean with this? >”With an artistic preview of the stadium that they will soon demolish,”

    Fenway isn’t goign anywhere. They have been sinkingf money inbto it for 6 years building it bigger and stronger. Fenway is here for another 40 years at least as the owners outlined just the other day.

  12. Pence Says:

    team Phish is going to demolish it with there bomb dropping

  13. Adam S Says:

    I was at this show, and it is one of my favorites… ever. This is my favorite Ghost, hands down. It’s just perfect. The first set was a blast, Trey was chatty and the debuts were a lot of fun. But the entire second set, in my memory, just bled together – one big blob of music.

    I encourage everyone to check this out, it was loads of fun.

  14. Little Buddy Says:

    @teamearth

    He means the Phish will figuratively demolish it with their phunk!

  15. mr. icclus Says:

    Mr. M. you really think Phenway tickets will be a tough ticket to score. 40,000 and thats not counting the field. As of last night toyota park IL tickets could still be purchased. I believe the 27 shows has maxed out alot of peoples credit. (including mine) The lotto will probably award alot of people with tickets maybe 20,000!!!

  16. Chalkdustin Says:

    Definitely can’t wait to see what other shenanigans the band is up to this summer. Miner, you really make me wish I was going to more than 6 shows this summer, especially now the Phenway show, but money is short and so are vacation days. Maybe we’ll get another show added closer to home here. Nevertheless, I can’t complain and anxiously await summer!

  17. thelastrewind Says:

    I think everyone is missing something in all of this “40,000 capacity not counting the field” talk. They aren’t going to sell all the seats, I’m sure some of the seats will be tarped off. I have no idea how many tickets they will actually sell for this show, but it won’t be 40,000+ based on true capacity of Fenway…

  18. camman Says:

    i agree Chalkdustin, since they announced the 1st leg of the summer tour, they’ve added 5 shows to it, (Knoxville, Bonnaroo x2, Fenway and Jones Beach) I wonder and hope that they fill in the schedule of the 2nd leg as nicley as they have the 1st. They announcement vids are a amazing way to annouce these shows and just reflects the creativity of the band. See ya’ll somewhere down the road!

  19. c0wfunk Says:

    my new motto: it’s not the shows you miss, it’s the ones you make.

    Make ’em count phanners…

  20. JoyBoy Says:

    Looking at hard-to-find concert seating charts for fenway, it looks like they set the stage in center field….back in the triangle. Reserved…floor seating, if you will, is placed in most of the outfield, but the infield is bare (no seating) and then there is the seating in the grandstand and what not….best seats will be either in the outfield or the roof seating along each baseline……grandstand is a bad idea, as from much of it you may not even be able to see the stage!!…so beware….some seats will suck ass….trust me

    I can’t go…still in Iraq…and my brother lives two blocks from Fenway!!!…ouch

    I

  21. Chalkdustin Says:

    cOwfunk, love that! Way to stay positive. I’m going to keep saying that to myself.

    P.S. welcome back, Cam. Hope to see you too, man.

  22. Dan Says:

    I think this is great news!!!! I wish I was going, but this is one show I can’t make. I already requested time off from work for other shows, booked campsites and planned my summer, but Fenway will be really cool for everyone there. I just hope that come friday night at Jones Beach they are warmed up and ready to rock. I was talking to a friend last weekend wondering how much new material would be debuted at Jones Beach, and we both figured that it would be a couple of songs each night. Now wiith these extra shows added I feel like they might be spreading some new songs throughout the first few nights. As much as I want to hear the classics, I am ready to embrace “party time” or whatever they have in store for us. Everybody have fun at Fenway it is gonna be sick!!!!

  23. JMelby Says:

    I’m really loving the video announcements. Just a class act all around. Thanks for the 7-2-98. That Ghost was unbelivable. Love it towrds the end when a few of us just couldn’t keep quiet and had to start random yells to show our appriciation. Besides Hampton, the Grey Hall weekend is my favorite Phish time. Off to Jamaica for the wifes B-Day. Post again on the 20th.

  24. nonoyolker Says:

    Oh glorious Fenway! Going to be a serious spectacle. My favorite band on my favorite field. Night of the summer written all over it. Nice prediction Miner. You called even the right day since day 1.
    Also, the second set of the Grey Hall show is sweet, good looks.

  25. Jay Says:

    @Mr Miner said:
    “People have already begun to speculate if this will mark the beginning of the stadium Phish era, and I’ve got to say I seriously doubt it. If there is one thing that this summer’s slate has proven to us, it is that Phish 3.0 will play where they want and when they want.”

    I disagree. This summer is different. The economy is in the dumps and cities are bending over backwards to accommodate touring acts to play their venues. They need the money. There will come a day if Phish remains as popular as they are now and the economy is good again when they will be banned from many of the places they are playing this summer. Especially the smaller venues. Cities just don’t want the hassle if they don’t have to. Witness what happened to the Dead in the ’80s. They were playing sheds and coliseums in 85 and then with the mass influx of touchheads they were forced to play stadiums by 87 as they started getting banned from many of the places they played in 85.

    Also, the more phans get shut out of every show, the more pressure on the Phish organization to play stadiums to accommodate more people who want to have a chance to see Phish play live.

    Just my 2 cents.

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