Reader’s Picks: Wilson Walker

8.22.12, Kansas City, MO (Ryan MacNeill)

8.22.12, Kansas City, MO (Ryan MacNeill)

All selections text and by Wilson Walker.

Makisupa Policeman > Maze” 11.19.95 I, Charlotte, NC

The old Hive was a special place for a lot of reasons. That cavernous room – with great curves – made every band that played the joint sound a little bigger – and boomier. As for the evolution of our favorite law enforcement officer, I’ve always preferred the older, lazier, loping reggae stylings of a ’94/’95ish Makisupa to the modern, peppier versions. I mean, is it a comedy piece now?  Also, who could argue with the vintage “Maki > Maze” pairing? As an opener, those two always went together like good wine and good cheese.



Ghost” 7.31.97 I, Mountain View, CA

The Shoreline ’97 show is understandably overshadowed by the previous night (“Bowie > Cities > Bowie”), but there were plenty of great nuggets in this one. The whole evening had a nice, laid back feel, and it all started with the band’s newest centerpiece. Remember the first time you heard Trey tell you the Story of the Ghost? Remember what “Ghost” sounded like that summer?



Rhinoceros > Halley’s” 8.3.98 I, Noblesville, IN

What, on paper, looks like a total bizarro cover instantly turns to gold, followed by a jammed-out “Halley’s” to begin a strangely compelling first set. This was one of those weird nights in ye olde corn fields, just look at the setlist. The show, as a whole, wasn’t exactly stellar, but the opening sequence was certainly some high-caliber Creek. Anyone else feel like a lot of the Creek nights kind of bleed together?



Moma Dance” 8.9.98 I, Virginia Beach, VA

“Terrapin Station?” Of course. The “Bag?” Oh yeah. The “Gin?” Blistering. That said, I think truly great Phish shows are built around more than just the big-ticket items. Great shows happen when those unforgettable big-ticket items are held together by some very important and often overlooked glue. That glue is when the band nails the small stuff. “Moma” never sounded any better.



Slave, Fluffhead, Character Zero” 11.18.98 II, Greenville, SC

Like many of you, I was stunned – STUNNED – when Phish released Hampton ’98 – as opposed to ’97. Even more baffling to me was that they would release two shows I found rather uninspired, when just a few nights prior they unleashed an absolute monster. The Bi-Lo Center is the only show I’ve seen that I think was a certifiable masterpiece – while no one else seems to regard it as such. Give the 2nd set finale a good loud spin. It packs the best versions of “Slave,” “Fluff” &” Zero” I’ve seen, all lined up in one scorching fastball. It still blows my mind every time I hear it.



2001” 7.7.99 II, Charlotte, NC

Well kids, this is about the time the dark vibes started creeping into our little funhouse. The scene in the parking lot this night veered between messy and slightly scary. Our crew – and we certainly weren’t the only ones – got popped by some really aggressive undercover cops. For me, it was an instantaneous dawn to the dark days ahead. That said, we all made it inside. Barely. Perhaps fed by the juju that spilled in from the lot, the show exploded into a mind bending piece of Phish. Start to finish, this one was stunning. The highlight: about 10 minutes of noise to lay the groundwork for the stickiest, swampiest, ’99-iest 2001 there ever was… and that was just the start of the second set.



Bathtub Gin“7.26.99 I, Noblesville, IN

Again, a show eclipsed by the previous night (which happens to be the only show i was ever shut out of – stupid time zone confusion.) Needless to say, I laced ’em up pretty tight for the tour closer. That disclaimer provided, I think this show deserves a little more love than it gets. It had a nice big ’99 feel to it, and I was a sucker for those. I submit for you a “Gin” that seems a little lost, before it finds its way to pure scorchery.



Limb by Limb” 7.25.03 I, Charlotte, NC

Huge – huge – peak in this one. Also, check out the way-groovy “Gin” in the same set. This was the only show I really enjoyed in 2003. It just wasn’t working for me. When I walked out, I looked at my sister and said ‘you know, i feel like that might be the last time I ever see those guys play. It almost was. I didn’t see Phish again until Fenway Park. Now, 37 shows into 3.0 and nine more on tap for this summer, I couldn’t be happier to have the band back. See y’all on the road.

[audio:] Tags:

897 Responses to “Reader’s Picks: Wilson Walker”

  1. xpun Says:

    Way to go G$

    Work lasted 20 min. Nothing going on. I’m not wasting my time in there.

  2. angryjoggerz Says:

    Good on ya, Guyute! I start with a trainer today – nervous. I’m predicting some puking.

  3. btb Says:

    Puking off the pounds!!

  4. Guyute711 Says:

    Looking forward to plyo on Tuesday. I heard they recommend a puke bucket for that one. I need to cut down on the six packs to try for a six pack.

  5. xpun Says:

    Camden 7-4-00. Fairly meh show to me at the time. Fist fights in the lot over nitrous post show. Everything just seemed dark and dirty any more. I was done. Skipped MPP that fall (dumbass) and was kidded twice in 2.0 and caught zip. Back on the train in ’10 and have loved the ride. Finding the BB has of course had a lot to do with that.

  6. st8 of mind Says:

    Not sure how anybody could dislike ’03 Phish. Grrrrrowl!

  7. makisupa Says:

    Wilson! Fantastic Ghost from a truly epic Shoreline visit. I pretend Hampton 98 doesn’t exist, the worst shows from that tour and a total misstep in attempting to reach outside the Phaithful.

    Tela’s scored on record store day! we have very few shops left, and a hungry vinyl group. The lines are stupendous, so I skipped it this year. Went to an evening show and bought a Vinyl copy of my friend’s latest, with a download code inside.

    Everyone getting fit, that’s awesome.

  8. xpun Says:

    speaking of dark days…

    this is the monitor mix from the deads 95 deer creek show. Coming out of space and into attics, you can hear them talking to each other about the scene in the lot and just wanting to wrap up the show and get out of there.

  9. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    Nice work, G$$$.

    I have slipped out of my regiment of exercise. Only jogging, nursing a set of sore tendons in the arms. Still have 10lbs to go.

    get fit, rage phish!

  10. btb Says:

    Re: workout stuff

    I’m currently doing Triathalon training, which is time consuming. But manageable I guess.

    Weekly routine is as follows:

    700 pushups (x2)
    700 situps (x2)
    Run 5 miles (x2)
    Bike 60 miles in total for the week; try and bike/run together on wknds if possible

  11. kayatosh Says:

    3.31.93 — YEM — $$$. peak trey.

  12. Dorn76 Says:

    700 pushups? Criminy.

  13. xpun Says:

    i can only manage to do about 7 get ups a week. you guys are making me feel doughy

  14. Kaveh Says:

    Loving this 2001; great pick.

  15. tela'smuff Says:

    anybody else her or pick up the Page album? i’m interested in thoughts. i really like it.

  16. voopa Says:

    My gut hurts just thinking about that. Well, and from the horrible cough I’ve had since Saturday night. May have overdone it a bit.

    TAB was fab. I said Scabbard last night when I meant Land of Nod. Burlap Sack and Pumps always seems to short to me, maybe it’s just how the song’s structured. Could live in that groove a bit longer each time. Great Last Tube. Set 2 started hot w/Curlew’s, Tube Top Flop, Jibboo, Plasma, Liquid Time. Then he took his bike out. Oh well. At least Spin followed. Triple encore of meh, Heavy Things, Show of Life, Devil Went, but it was all gravy after Plasma.

    Went to before and had a killer tequila/agave concoction, a couple pints of Racer 5, and an excellent grilled cheese & salami. Got in the Fox early and found seats on the floor next to the SBD, which saved my ass. Was able to get up whenever and take a break when needed. Met some cool tapers too. My first show since BGCA, good to get back out. Stayed at the Okland Clarion, which is not recommended, but it was cheap and not horrible.

  17. tela'smuff Says:


  18. btb Says:

    I was kind of shocked when I read that Page had a 10 song instrumental album coming out. Very cool.

  19. btb Says:

    Also, I’m getting convinced that those “insanity” and “P90x” videos work. People who have done them say they work…definitely looks hard. I might try one day.

    The Tony Little Gazelle pic….always good for a laugh

  20. snow Says:

    phish has now invaded seattle sports radio.
    They played maze for a bumper. Then the producer and a host are debating the merits of the music. Danny is making dirty hippie jokes.


  21. BingosBrother Says:

    We Are Every Where

  22. HeadyBrosevelt Says:

    my buddy had a sticker when i was kid that read: weir everywhere

  23. LawnMemo Says:

    The Daily Ghost has been completed!!!! All 113 versions are up for your reading and listening pleasure!

    Here is the Dick’s 09/02/12 version (which I love)

    And Here is a link to what lies in store for The Daily Ghost project and myself in the future

    Thank You all for all of your support and all the great comments throughout. Stay in Touch! Love you all!

  24. plord Says:

    Hanging with the parents and two youngest kids in Springfield VA. Teenager with her bio-dad in Jersey. Wife coralling demolition at home then taking off to see her mom again. One of those no-rest-no-relaxation vacations.

    Saw John Prine Friday night with the missus. First time, been meaning to catch him a while. He played basically the perfect setlist of stuff I would have wanted to hear, every song a gem including the ones that were new to me. One of the benefits of being Prine is that the older you get, the more authentic your voice seems 🙂 Crowd was rowdy and demanding– like it was even possible that he wouldn’t play “Far from me”??– and the mix was a little sideman-heavy for my liking but I’m not gonna complain too loud. Fun night, awesome tunes.

    Off to Hidden Pond Nature center. I’ll spin these sweet looking picks on the phone while the kids play.

  25. xpun Says:

    WOW. The band really gets into the peak of this one. Everyone pushes it up and over the top

    Finding it hard to get back to phish. going to hit up some of wilson’s picks now. makisupa does almost feel like a schtick now. like i don’t know but not as funny. imo a few good versions lately the pages house, >night nurse>, but for the most part just a midset gag to me

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