Never have I wanted my credit card to be charged as much as I do right now. The magic digits of $564 are the numbers that would bring me bliss, celebration, and relief. $564 (or $282 if you’re rolling solo) represents the cost of two tickets for The Greek and Telluride. (Or any 10 single tickets, but that’s mere trivia in this instance.) Anyone who gets the privilege to purchase these golden tickets via Phish’s lottery this week will be able to deeply exhale and put their feet up, while everyone else sweats it out. Lottery winners will be automatically freed-up to stab for east coast lower pavilions, or to help friends on the harder missions this weekend. But more than anything, one’s hassle will be over before it ever began.
Phish tickets are fickle bitches these days. At times costing upwards of $300 in the secondary market for the smallest shows, at many other times, one can’t give them away if they tried. The actual market value of a single Phish ticket fluctuates so greatly in relation to locale, as one can clearly observe this summer. Other than The Greek and Telluride, all other tickets will be easy scores, and the only issue will be lawn or pavilion. If one waits out the initial feeding frenzy, many of these tickets will be for sale on lot for far under the $60 face plus fees value. The same scene took place in 2009, where the only hard tickets (besides Hampton) became the tiny Fox Theatre in St. Louis and the band’s uber-climactic return to Red Rocks, holding only 10,000 people. (Asheville gets an honorable mention, but it wasn’t the same.) For most other shows, one could score a stub for $20 -40 easily, and it was a fair deal leaving both parties happy. It used to be that one could walk to the venue with an extra ticket with no doubt of selling it to someone along the way. But at this point, when trying to sell extras, one encounters far more people trying get rid of their own superfluous stubs than anyone looking to buy one. Except for these special shows when tickets are worth more than gold; it’s quite an interesting dichotomy.
Last year’s Fox show, one case study, turned out to be a very funny occasion. So many people flew across the country and paid top dollar to get into The Fox, and Phish responded with one of the tamest shows of the tour, centering “Time Turns Elastic” in the second set. A decent, yet linear, “Halley’s” jam held the only redeeming value on a night that everyone had circled for months as the “can’t-miss” show of summer. But unquestionably, The Fox represented an exception rather than the norm, as Phish rarely disappoints. And something tells me the band won’t be dropping duds in Berkeley and the Rockies come August.
With only a few days separating us from summer tour’s general on-sales, everyone and their mother (pun intended) will be getting their lottery emails before too long. Over these next two days fans will obsessively check their credit cards, praying for that magic $564 or $282 hold, and before long, we will all know one or two people who scored huge. But in the meantime, all we can do is wait and cross our fingers. With the amount of requests versus the amount of available tickets, the word “lottery” has never seemed so appropriate.
Good luck to all, and may the force be with you. We are gonna’ need it.
Jam of the Day:
“Wolfman’s Brother” 7.26.99 II
The second set opener from Summer ’99′s US finale at Deer Creek.
DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:
6.20.04 SPAC, Saratoga Springs, NY < Megaupload
This show concluded Phish’s last gasp of full-blown creativity in 2004. As the band sculpted their unofficial post-hiatus finale over SPAC’s magical nights, they left us with two more shows to remember forever. The band’s first visit back since Summer ’95 proved to be high point of ’04. The second set – “Seven Below > Ghost > Twist, YEM” – contains top-notch jamming throughout.
I: Rift, Julius, Bill Bailey, Won’t You Please Come Home?, Waves, Gumbo, Water in the Sky, Horn, Poor Heart, Drowned
II: Seven Below > Ghost > Twist, You Enjoy Myself
E: Good Times Bad Times
NOTE: I am out of town for a few days at an undisclosed location with very sketchy Internet connectivity. This will effect the site in a few ways this week. First off, there will be no torrents. I will do my best to get torrents of this week’s shows up when I get home. Also, I may not be able to connect for long enough to upload new shows for Downloads of the Day, therefore, I will likely feature shows that were posted a long time ago or went directly to the archive. Things will be back to normal by the weekend. Thanks for your understanding!