During the pause in Letter to Jimmy Page, Trey dedicated the song to everybody who was graduating. Trey acknowledged having played there for a long time and thanked the students for always inviting the band. The first set of this show was played outdoors in the McKewen Quad, but was halted due to rain. The second set was subsequently played indoors in the Keehn Co-Op's dorm lounge. The setlist for the second set may be incomplete. Bowie contained Contact teases in the intro, multiple "Elvis" quotes and a "Red Red Wine" quote. The soundcheck's Adeline contained a Marley quote from Fish. Some recordings that circulate with this date are mislabeled “The Front.”
Contact and Red Red Wine teases in David Bowie
Debut Years (Average: 1987)

This show was part of the "1990 Tour"

Show Reviews

, attached to 1990-05-15

Review by tmwsiy

tmwsiy On the eve of 5-15-90, it was decided to light out to Hamilton College for an outdoor show. This despite the fact that there were finals on 5-16. Four of us packed into my Subaru that had seen it's fair share of treks across the Northeast over the past 12 months checking out this new band 'Phish'. The poor Subaru just couldn't make it any longer and blew out the clutch half way there. We hiked two miles to the nearest phone booth & quickly started making calls. In my head, I am thinking, 'We gotta find someone to drive up from Ithaca and take us to Hamilton!' Wheras my buddies where thinking, 'Too bad we can't make the show, gotta find someone to pick us up and take us back'

When this dichotomy was realized, I bid adieu to my friends, and stuck out my thumb in an attempt to hitch the remaining 50 miles or so. Shortly later, I was picked up by the sweetest lady you could imagine. She said she was heading within about 20 miles of Clinton where the school was and she'd be happy to take me as close as that. Once we got to that location, she said, 'Ah heck, I've gotten you this far, I may as well take you to town where you can hop the local bus to campus'. Sweet! I may make the beginning of the show after-all.

As we approach town, she says the same thing....'Oh how silly of me, since I got you to town, it can't hurt to zip you up to campus'. We drive the remaining five miles and she doesn't just dump me off at the edge of campus. She rolls down her window and asks, 'Excuse me young man, where is the rock concert?' This happens three times or so until she navigates right to the quad where the show is. I jump out, hug her, thank her profusely for driving me all that distance and dance right into the quad where the opening notes of Fee were just gracing the air.

After a blistering Reba, and given the college graduations about to take place, a very appropriate Alumni Blues > Jimmy Page > Alumni Blues, I reach for my wallet. Horror! I remembered I had taken it out of my pocket since it had been bothering me and left it in the lady's car right on the backseat. So I am without a penny, no car, temperatures plummeting, no ID and finals tomorrow. Despite the misery of being 'walletless' and 'carless' and alone, I do my best to enjoy the remainder of the set. (Mike's, Split Open, Coil, Jim and others). The sky continued to get darker and darker. And colder. And drops of rain started bouncing off the makeshift stage. It looked ominous. And then the sky totally opened up and the rains came in force! Remainder of show: CANCELLED! Now: no wallet, no car, no way of getting back and no second set.

I start walking from group of people to group of people asking if anyone is driving South. As I make my way around, I bump into a guy I recognize from a show at the Haunt a few weeks earlier. As I start to open my mouth, "Hey Parker, what's happening!" he bellows at me. I give him my story and he says he's heading back to Ithaca. Sweet! Ride home! As we head to a dorm room to pick up one more guy for the ride, I feel a tap on my shoulder. I spin around....and it's........the Sweet Lady! With a massive shit eating grin on her face and holding my wallet in her hand. I saw her with a wallet in her hand! I saw her with a wallet in her hand! She explains that when she got home, she noticed my wallet in the back seat & that she planned on mailing it to me. Then she figured I would need it, so she drove all the way back to deliver to me. If it had been one more minute, I would have been inside and she never would have found me. So now I have my wallet back (and money), and a lift home. As the band is schlepping their gear out, we say, 'Hey Trey, why not play inside?' After a quick laugh, we continue to ask. 'Seriously..why not?' Trey chats it up with the rest of the band and agrees. We bring all the gear into the basement of a dorm hall and get set up pretty quickly. Before you know it, Phish is playing a private show for about 30 of us or so. Requests? You bet. A hat passed to collect money for a keg & pizzas? You bet. Frenetic, balls out playing with a reckless abandon? You bet. 'Contact' played as a perfect way to punctuate this day that centered around my car that got towed? You bet.

The joy of Phish.

Epic from the beginning. Epic still today.
, attached to 1990-05-15

Review by Mikesgroover

Mikesgroover The second set is certainly unique, as it was played on borrowed instruments since the band's equipment was all packed up already. That accounts for the strange-sounding keyboards-- it's entirely possible Page was playing a cheap dorm room Casio. The taper notes indicate the second set source is "unknown boom box placed on stage". Considering the source, it doesn't sound that bad. Here's a story from attendee David Livingston, which accompanied those notes:

"Anyway, as we arrived for soundcheck, there were about 10 of us hanging out under overcast skies. Marley was running around and it was a great vibe. When the show started, it started raining lightly which became steadier throughout the set. Trey seemed to be playing the storm as the peaks occurred as the rain became sheets. The crowd grew throughout the set but to no larger than 50-60 people. Then came the thunder and a few shots of lightning. When it got to be its worst, Trey announced that due to the storm, they would be unable to finish the show.

While all were bummed (and most tripping), we understand and went back to our rooms to plan alternate activities. After about 30 minutes, word of mouth spread that they had agreed to play a second set in the Co-op lounge. All their equipment was packed away so they agree to use the gear of our campus cover band "Pi". When I arrived at the co-op there were about 10 of us and the set had just started. This was an extremely tight room (similar to the size of Nectar's upstairs). Probably another 30 people or so were able to cram in with the overflow listening outside. Pizza was ordered and a keg bought and brought in and the show continued to conclusion. It was amazing."

Tweezer jam is interesting, especially considering this is only the 14th time the song had been played. It gets some love from the crowd. You've never heard a Caravan sound quite like this either, thanks to the instrumentation. Before they get into Bowie, someone (Page?) can be overheard asking if the pizza is here yet, urging either audience members or the bands crew not to leave until the pizza arrives. "I hope you realize we're holding you hostage, you're not leaving." someone else says in response.
, attached to 1990-05-15

Review by TheEmu

TheEmu OK, tale of two sets here. Set I is, for the most part, pretty average, although there is a pretty hot and interesting Alumni Blues with a kind of groove I'd not heard before. The sound quality kind of goes back and forth, from crispy souboard to muffled soundboard, starting with Reba (which wasn't very good). SOAMelt is also kind of terrible, IMO, with an atonal slop jam that didn't trip my trigger at all. There are also some cuts here and there, such as in Uncle Pen. So, not a great first set, not horrible bad, heading for two stars, I thought.

Set II is one of the more odd sets I've heard. It sounds to me like Page is playing the set with a Casio or some sort of cheap synthisizer. It's really bizarre, with all kinds of weird effects: whistles, bell sounds, harmonica sounds, and other 50's Sci-Fi B-movie effects. There are no notes with the show to indicate Page was using a different instrument, so I'm not sure what the deal was. Sometimes it does sound more like typical electric-keyboard Page, but other times...just weird. I really have a hard time gauging what I think of the jams, as they sounded so odd to me with these effects. I can tell you that there is a cool little bass and drum segment that leads into Tweezer, and I thought that most of the jams sounded fairly average to me...with the exception of Page. Maybe someone can shed some light on this set later. I think I'm gonna rate this as 3 stars, bumping it back up from a two-star first set, just based on how odd it struck me.
, attached to 1990-05-15

Review by thelot

thelot Set 1 SBD source #1 sounds awesome! The patch source isn’t great but fills in the holes nicely. Set 2 is a subpar audience recording but thankfully this unique second set was recorded!

The recording starts off with the Soundcheck. Adeline cuts in. There’s clearly an audience present for the soundcheck. Lots of fun stage banter that comes through nicely on the tape. Hilarious version of Bitch!!

Trey gives a shout out to the Hamilton College graduates during LTJP. Some of whom had been seeing the band since they started playing Hamilton College back in ‘88. Foam features a Santana inspired solo from Trey. Groove smokes per usual. This spunky version of Uncle Pen transitions nicely into Bouncin’. They break for the rain after a rock solid Melt. They come back and close with Jim.

There’s a good chance there’s more to this second set. The tape picks up during A-Train. Sometime between Set 1 on the McKewen Quad and Set 2 in the Keehn Co-Op Dorm Lounge, Page acquires a new toy which he uses throughout the 2nd set. From A-Train to the set closing Contact Page colors this set with some interesting sounds. It’s a shame the sound quality is lacking, but at least some of this unique set was recorded!
, attached to 1990-05-15

Review by physhb8

physhb8 Had to give this one four stars due to the novelty of the sound in the second set (which apparently was due to using other musicians' instruments) and how well they pulled it off under the circumstances. I've been listening to every available show since the beginning, and this one deserves higher ratings than it has based on this fact alone.
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