When it was announced that Phish would be playing a show on the Ray Ban Stage at the N’awlins Jazzfest, it looked like I'd be making my first appearance in the state of Louisiana. Not only that, but tickets were only $10, and that included all-day admission to the Fairgrounds! Of course, there are many reasons to visit N’awlins, but Phish and Jazzfest are the ones that brought me there for the first time.
Phish was scheduled to play one set, starting at 3:25 PM. They opened with “Ya Mar”, which is the perfect summer opener, in this fan's opinion. Of course, it wasn't really summer yet, but I had traveled from Chicago, where it was cold and rainy, so this was close enough. The weather that weekend in N’awlins was hot and sunny, with a hundred percent chance of gettin' down! Trey quoted “When the Saints Go Marching In” during the “Ya Mar”. This opener really got the crowd in the mood to shake their bones!
The “CTB” featured Michael Ray on trumpet, and was quite a fun version. I only wish that he had stuck around for a few more tunes. This was followed by a “YEM”, which is notable for a modulation in the early stages of the jam, which gives way to some fine summery noodling by Trey. His soloing is very mellow, and makes me think of lazy summer evenings, when it's too hot to do anything other than sit on the porch, and have a beer with a friend. Of course, rock 'n roll Trey took over before we knew what was happening. That didn't last for too long, though, as the jam stops abruptly, and jumps into a vocal jam, which turned out to be an a cappella version of “Wolfman's Brother”. What a surprise! They sang two or three verses before Trey began some wah-wah. The rest of the band joined in soon enough. This was definitely the most interesting version of “Wolfman's” until 12/28/96 Philly.
When this Phish show ended, the party really didn't stop, because we were in N’awlins! The Funky Meters played right after Phish. For those of you keeping track, at 4:20, “Harry Hood” was gracing the ears of the sun-soaked crowd.