[Editor's Note: The staff here at phish.net was batting around the abundant merits of this summer's marquee jams, and thought we'd share our thoughts with you. Click through and read about the Randall's "Chalk Dust," the Dick's "Simple," and lots, lots more. This overview is not meant to be comprehensive; if your favorite jam isn't listed, it wasn't a slight. By all means please feel free to discuss your favorites in the comments. These jams are meticulously and painstakingly ranked... by date, ascending. -CB]
“Harry Hood” – 7/1/14, Mansfield, MA (Parker Harrington)
Tour openers are what Christmas mornings used to be for me as a kid: Tons of anticipation that builds, and builds. Regardless of what gifts Santa left under the tree, you were always around family and loved ones and the day provided fantastic memories. I’ve seen several dozen Phish tour openers over the years and they’ve been packed with epic jams, monster versions of classics, top shelf moments of the entire tour and plenty of Phish debuts. Of course, a shift in style or a glimpse into the future is often evident after long breaks and the advent of a new tour as well.
Walking into Great Woods, in Mansfield, MA on July 1st it was fun thinking about all the shows I had seen there as well as trying to guess what type of opener it would be? Shaking off the rust is always part of it but I think, that too, is part of the fun. But would there be more debuts? With the Fuego tunes looming for heavy rotation, that was unlikely. So I was indeed hoping for a tour highlight or two and a masterful take on a Phish classic staple. The only question left in my mind was just which song would it be?
I went to see Phish's 2014 summer tour in America from July 2nd to July 14th. I saw eight shows in two weeks at SPAC, The Mann, and Randall's Island. It was my longest trip in America so far, and the shows were very exciting. I liked SPAC3, Mann2, and Randalls3 because Phish seemed so focused. Also, I met a lot of my friends and hung out with them. I was happy to meet them.
SPAC – July 3
This is my favorite venue because the lot is the best, I'd been there two times before. I stayed at Phanart Pete's place in Albany, NY. I was surprised they opened with "Farmhouse." Actually, I didn't remember the show because I drunk a little moonshine in the parking lot and I had heavy jet lag. I passed out during the last part of the first set. I took an energy pill when they began the second set. It was so good. "Bathtub Gin," "Limb By Limb" and “Winterqueen” were the most impressive tunes. "Winterqueen" had an extremely beautiful melody. As you know it was composed by Trey and Tom Marshall. I went with Phanart Pete and Phootdoc to Putnam Den after the show, and enjoyed drinking, dancing, and eating pizza.
With 39 days to wait for a new Phish show to be played, come waste your time with the 184th edition of Phish.Net's Mystery Jam Monday. The winner will receive an MP3 download courtesy of our friends at LivePhish.com / Nugs.Net. To win, be the first person to identify the song and date of the mystery jam clip. Each person gets one guess per day, with the second “day” starting after I post the hint. A hint will be posted on Tuesday if necessary, with the answer to follow on Wednesday. Good luck!
We're surprised to see how many tickets are still available for shows later this month featuring Trey and varous orchestras, performing pieces from his 30-year career as well as a brand new composition (for electric guitar and orchestra) that he's created just for this tour!
Consider the Hollywood Bowl show, Friday September 26th, featuring the Los Angeles Philharmonic conducted by Scott Dunn. Even if, somehow, the show itself (not to mention the venue) weren't compelling enough, consider the opening act: Richard Reed Parry (Arcade Fire), Bryce Dessner (The National), and the yMusic ensemble, performing selections from new release Music for Heart and Breath.
While tickets up front top $400, rear sections start at only $18 (!) - and while you won't see the bassoonist's fingers from the back, the sound is great. At that price, the music, venue, weather, and ticket availability make for a great family night - so, the Lemurians are coming kids-in-tow. If you are as well, let's aim for a Phish.net family gathering picnic outside pre-show?
The Mimi Fishman Foundation has announced a new on-line charity auction in conjunction with Phish’s WaterWheel Foundation. Bidding has already begun on ticket/cd packages for every show on the fall tour, as well as a Las Vegas package which includes ticket to all three shows, overnight accommodations at the MGM Grand, and a bunch of other goodies. The proceeds of the auction, which closes September 18h, will benefit the organizations hosted at the WaterWheel table at each venue during the tour.
You may have heard about the Philosophy School of Phish, which is directed by Professor Stephanie Jenkins, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the School of History, Philosophy, and Religion at Oregon State University. She is also co-director of the Phronesis Lab for Engaged Ethics, which concerns communicating with each other about ethical questions and issues in a pragmatic, active, and civil way, in order to foster greater experience and understanding of the human condition. See, e.g., this article from April 2014 about Dr. Jenkins’s work with high school students regarding whether whites owe blacks reparations for slavery.
Dr. Jenkins also recently invited Dr. Ellis Godard, Ph.D., the executive director of The Mockingbird Foundation and an associate professor of sociology at California State University Northridge, to answer questions from her students, and he did so in a post in July to this blog.
I asked Dr. Jenkins and a few of her students about the “Phishlosophy” course, and how it went.
Last night Phish closed their fourth consecutive Labor Day run at Dick's Sporting Goods Park outside of Denver. In that relatively short period of time, the band has done more than just play twelve mostly above average shows at the otherwise soulless soccer stadium; they've created a new tradition. New Years Eve and Halloween will likely always be the two most hallowed days on the Phish calendar, but pencil in the Dick's run right below those. Fans are on notice, if they weren't already, that this isn't just another three-show run. Miss these shows at your peril, because it's no longer coincidence that Phish delivers outstanding shows at Dick's.
After two great shows to open the run, we knew we were going to be pouring from the proverbial gravy boat all night. Even a run of the mill show couldn't really tarnish either the run or the Dick's legacy, but the band made it clear with a cleanly played "Curtain With" opener, that there would be no need to entertain those possibilities. It's always good times when the boys take the stage looking for fun and a playful "Wombat" declared those intentions. Straight forward versions of "Kill Devil Falls," "Bouncing" and "Poor Heart" continued to show the band in good form, even if they didn't offer groundbreaking improvisation. "ASIHTOS" (aka "Assy Toes") provided the first, albeit brief, glimpse of deep improv. "Lawn Boy" let everyone catch their breath before jumping right back into the deep end with a stellar "Wolfman's Brother." Rather than proceed directly to the swampy funk peak as many versions tend to do, this "Wolfman's" took its time, hitting several slinky grooves along the way. Don't miss this one.
[We’d like to welcome guest blogger Tanya Sperry for today’s recap - PZ]
Saturday night is the sweet spot of Phish’s 3-day Labor Day weekend run at Dick’s. With Friday’s anticipation out of the way and Monday’s post-weekend let down in the distant future, we were primed to enjoy some middle show bliss. Plus, it was one of those beautiful Denver Saturdays whose giant blue skies mocked sleeping in and inspired at least some hang time in the sun, if not a hike in the foothills or a stroll to a farmer’s market.
Photo by Andy Man, © Phish, Phish From the Road
The Mockingbird Foundation and Phish.net are pleased and excited to be hosting our 3rd annual meet-up during the Saratoga Performing Arts Center stand.
We have reserved the Orenda Pavilion in Saratoga Springs State Park for Saturday, July 5. This pavilion is conveniently located adjacent to the main venue lot (The East Lot) off Route 50. Check out this Map - the pin for "Geyser Loop Road" is the Orenda lot and pavilion. Attendees can either enter the park (fee is $8 per car) and navigate to the pavilion, or park in the main lots, and walk a short path which runs perpindicular from the back of the East Lot to the paved Orenda parking lot, and will be marked with a sign.
We should have coals going from early afternoon through doors, so bring something to grill, and there is plenty of room for all sorts of entertainment and recreation. More complete details about the facilities, etc., are available in the forum thread.
Please stop by and say hi to some old friends and new, or make an afternoon of it! (And grab a fuego-mas commemorative laminate/nametag while you're at it.)