Posted to rec.music.phish and/or submitted to the legacy Phish.net site...
It all started when my sister Hilary asked me if I would join her in a little road trip to N.Y.C. to see a couple of her friends play in a band called Phish. I wasn't to sure about going, since I never heard them play before. However, I was smart enough to keep an open mind to try something new! That evening, I found myself inside a bar by the name "Wetlands Preserve" with a few hours before the band came on. So I was talkin' away with my sister and a nice fellow by the name of "Fish". Using my clever brain, I assumed he was a member of the band. And then realized he was the drummer since he could count every drum beat to the live version of "Dixie Chicken" that was playing in the background. Midnight finally rolls around and I was all set to see and hear what Phish could dish out. Except one problem. There was this huge man standing right in front of me blocking my entire view. Not to worry, towards the middle of the first set, he finally had the nerve to jump on stage, whip out a hermonica (sp?), and play the thing like he ivented it. "Gee!..This guy sounds as good as the guy from Blues Traveler!!" I made this brilliant comment to a happy listener as he responded "No shit sherlock!!! That IS John Popper of Blues Travleler!" By 3:30am, Phish finishes their last song and I was Beat. Hilary gave me the option to hang with the band for a while, but I was too tired and nervous to do such a thing! Therefore, we left with I night I would never fo rget!!
This was the show where my bro-in-law passed out standing up. How did he achieve such a feat? Midway through the second set, the area in front of the stage was so smash-packed that he went out (during Fluffhead), but the shoulders surrounding him kept him from going down. Word was that Wetlands head-counted people enough who could also fit downstairs in the "chill" room. Of course, by second set, they'd all be upstairs pressing toward the band. Not only that, but the energy in that room was frenetic. On the 3am street, bro-in-law snapped out of it, regained his color, and we walked up to our apartment in the Village. Sure, I was bummed to not catch the last bits of the show, but what I had seen seemed somehow NYC worthy. There's just something about the energy in that town.
it's hazy... But it went something like this..
I was a BIG Blues Traveler fan in the late 80's... I went to see them at Wetlands.. It may've been an anniversary concert. I spoke to Popper after asked when he's playing again.. And told me he was sitting in with some friends on a Saturday coming up. I went and found myself standing in front of a bass rig drinking my beer... wating...
Phish came out... Broke into Mikes.. And the rest was history..
I heard great original improv music... With hints of ALL the bands I loved coming through a influence.
I caught them once more at Wetlands before they got too big for it..
I always wonder what life would be like without that tipoff... And if we didn't have the Wetlands..
There are definitely some decent highlights to this show, including My Sweet One and Funky Bitch with Popper, which are sweeet (although the end of Bitch just sounds odd, ending with a drum solo), a nice > from Coil into Lizards, a nice end to Fluffhead and, best of all, a totally kick ass -> from the YEM vocal jam into Possum. Not an astounding show, but definitely solid, IMO. 3 stars.
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