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!”

  1. msbjivein Says:

    Guy, That’s even better then they can compare the two and see why Phish is king! You always save the best for last!!!!!!
    Nothing else matters!

  2. guyforget Says:

    that’s greaf Funk!! My best friend got married last september. I was th best man. To my surprise, his wife actaully let him play some phish at thier reception, albeit, it was studio versions of Sample and Waste, but what the F, i’ll take it!! So funny when the opening chords of Sample started and we were all on the dance floor, and all the girls were all “oh my god, this reminds me of college!!”. So funny. He did manage to make Waste the final song of the night for him and his wife to dance to, so she scored major points in my book.

  3. guyforget Says:

    yeah, Phish after two nights of that BS is like the most wicked awesome encore evah, 12/30/97 stylee.

  4. c0wfunk Says:

    phish didn’t make it into my wedding, but we walked down the aisle to a small string band playing Land’s End with SCI’s “glory chords” section peaking when my wife came down .. then after the ceremony we walked out with jean luc ponty’s “mouna bowa” groovin along .. the DJ was rockin NFA when we entered the reception ; then TLEO during cake cutting; first dance was the beatles “here there and everywhere” .. my wife pretty much let me handle the music completely, but it was easy because she likes the same stuff I do (though she’s a little more acoustic generally and I’m a little more chaotic..)

  5. notkuroda Says:

    My wife has never seen phish, she likes them fine, she’s heard enough from me. I’m going to quite a few shows without her this summer, but her first shows will be at the Gorge. She used to be a deadhead until Jerry died. For her, no Jerry=no Dead. Hell she’s more into Garcia Grisman bluegrass and JGB then the Dead. When he died, she basically dropped out of the scene and married some loser. When she met me 4 years ago, I reintroduced her, and she was happy to be home. We’ve had some fantastic musical experiences together and I have no doubt she’s going to love Phish.

  6. tadcaster Says:

    Fenway is set up with plastic foor panels that cover the grass during concerts. Bleacher seats are sold. No phish on infield. No GA on lawn, there will already be seats down for DMB. Go PHiSH!

  7. msbjivein Says:

    Kuroda,I really can’t think of a better place to see a 1st show than the Gorge! It won’t be as crazy as east coast shows.(at least the scene) But the beauty of that place will deff inhance the experience. I’ve always like seeing west coast phish it’s a change of pace compared to east coast Phish. Way more laid back.

  8. Jay Says:

    I always liked midwest shows (especially deercreek), It’s like goldilocks, west cost? Too soft. East cost? Too hard. Midwest? Yes, just right!

  9. fromthetub Says:

    We got married last summer and our first dance was “I am hydrogen” (from IT). I didn’t want our families to freak out with too much Phish at the reception, but we needed to honor the fact that we met on Phish tour in 2000. Luckily, we both are long time fans, so ’09 summer is not a problem. Hampton was like coming home, with the Hydrogen the icing on the cake. We’re in it together! So excited!!!

  10. msbjivein Says:

    Jay, That’s 100% correct! Midwest shows fucking rock! The people, the music, the scene. Everyone seems to come for the right reasons.

  11. Chalkdustin Says:

    Midwest represent! (sorry, I had to)

  12. msbjivein Says:

    Chalkdustin, Where’s ur home shed?

  13. Chalkdustin Says:

    Lived in Chicago for 18 years, now in Milwaukee. Where you at?

  14. msbjivein Says:

    Indy!!! Just moved back from the west coast a couple yrs ago and LOVE IT! Good to be home! Can’t wait for DEERCREEK! Only wish it was for more than one night. But Alpine will be a blast as always!

  15. Chalkdustin Says:

    Awesome, midwest love! I’ll see you at CD and Alpine then, my friend!

  16. Jay Says:

    I live in the music capital of the world my friends.

  17. Chalkdustin Says:

    Austin?

  18. Little Buddy Says:

    RE: Weddings and wives and Phish… Check this out:

    My wife and I had paid Phix, a really great Phish cover band from CO, to come to our wedding in Rochester NY. They played for 4+ hours at our wedding and then a show the next night at a bar down the street. It was awesome and it was all my wife’s idea. I guess I’m pretty lucky!

    Can’t wait for Phenway!!!

  19. Little Buddy Says:

    oh yeah… We saw Trey at Cornell a month or so before the wedding and my wife put an invitation right up next to Trey’s rig. We have a classic photo of his rig, his feet, and the invite to our wedding. Pretty funny (obviously he didn’t come… HAHA!)

  20. c0wfunk Says:

    that sounds great little buddy! I hung with the guitar player from Phix a little in Hampton on saturday – pretty cool dude.

  21. Jay Says:

    yes Austin.

  22. Mr. Completely Says:

    @ Pence – love that manteca – in fact miners Summer 98 mix brought it a little closer to me…that mix is full of gentle nods towards manteca…not even teases…just time after time I heard “oh they could slip into manteca so easily from here.” then they threw down that huge one at halloween…very sweet

    My wife and I built our wedding around good music. The core of the ceremony was Attics of My Life. Waste was the end of ceremony music, They Love Each Other was the first dance etc.

    I got *so* lucky. My wife isn’t just a good woman that’s into good bands – her favorite songs are things like The Other One and Split. She’s a rocker.

    They do exist ;o)

  23. c0wfunk Says:

    man is there any song cycle that completes like Quadrophenia? A friggin masterpiece I swear.

  24. Little Buddy Says:

    @c0wfunk

    Awesome! Paul is a very cool dude and a great guitar player. I was hoping to see him there but didn’t run into him. Nice bunch of guys and great musicians.

  25. nonoyolker Says:

    Lovin’ all the wife/girlfriend advice going on. I am in a situation with my mrs. as well. Together 4 yrs and she just doesn’t get IT. Play it for her CONSTANTLY. Make playlists 6 hours long so the jams will sink in while she sleeps. Nothing. Funny thing is she has probably logged more hours of phish listening than a lot of phans, due simply to overexposure from me. She did cop me cherry seats to 2nd (now 3rd) nite Jones for me and her brother, so god bless her! And I am hitting 12 shows this summer instead of a “traditional” vacation w/ no complaint. Can’t ask for much more. Would love to be at a show with my lady to face out though. The grand dilema…

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