Ride Captain Ride

Originally Performed ByBlues Image
Original AlbumOpen (1970)
VocalsPage (lead), Mike, Trey (backing)
Phish Debut1987-03-23
Last Played2013-10-26
Current Gap425
HistorianCharlie Dirksen (icculus)
Last Update2016-02-21


It is impossible to have grown-up in the 1970's without hearing “Ride Captain Ride” on the radio. Released in 1970 on the album Open by one-hit wonder Blues Image – their one hit being “Ride Captain Ride” – the single version of the song was hugely successful, eventually reaching No. 4 in the U.S. It is an upbeat blues number co-written by Frank "Skip" Konte and Mike Pinera (who eventually joined the band Iron Butterfly, another one-hit wonder who's one hit, “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida,” has been teased by Phish on occasion).

Blues Image – "Ride Captain Ride"

Phish has covered “Ride Captain Ride” over the course of nearly their entire history. They first played it at Nectar's on 3/23/87, segueing into “Dave’s Energy Guide.” The song made its second appearance on 9/13/88 at Sam’s Tavern, a three set show that featured Fish’s first use of the vacuum, and that preceded the band’s first expansive Northeast tour. The version of “Ride Captain Ride” that most widely circulated among fans in the 1990s, however, was performed during the legendary Ian’s Farm show on 5/28/89.

Covered only ten times between 1987 and 1999, "Ride Captain Ride" has been performed comparatively many times since being bust-out at the Mullins Center at the University of Massachusetts on 10/24/10. Fans rode the "mystery ship" six additional times between Darien Lake on 6/8/11 and Worcester on 10/26/13. Be sure to be amazed at the friends you have there on your trip when (if) you next get it.

Phish, "Ride Captain Ride" – 10/26/13, Worcester, MA. Video by LazyLightning55a.

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