It's been fifteen years since the shows at Coventry, billed to be Phish's last shows. Long-time fan Chris Pepino of True Form Pictures created a documentary film about Coventry and Phish fans traveling to it, We Enjoy Yourself, in 2004. It screened at the New Jersey Film Festival back in 2009, even winning Best Documentary at the festival that year. The complete film is now streaming live for free at weenjoyyourself.com.
If you've never listened to the music of Coventry, don't be shy.Those who attended the shows that weekend will never forget them; and this post partly explains why, and why there are a lot of good reasons to listen to the shows, warts and all.
Welcome to the 383rd edition of Phish.Net's Mystery Jam Monday, the final and most difficult of July. The winner will receive an MP3 download codes courtesy of our friends at LivePhish.com / Nugs.Net. To win, be the first person to identify the songs and dates of both mystery clips. The clips are connected by a theme, but the theme needn't be part of the correct answer. Each person gets one guess to start – if no one answers correctly in the first 24 hours, I'll post a hint. After the hint, everyone gets one more guess before Wednesday at 10 AM PT / 1 PM ET. Good luck!
Note: Special thanks to fellow MJM Emeritus @schvice for the tip on one of the clips. Also, while the theme is straightforward, I can't emphasize enough how difficult this MJM is.
Hint: “Oh, what a night” - though these jams were played on two different nights in the early ‘90s.
Answer: Congrats to @twoms on winning their first MJM, solving one of the more difficult puzzles in recent memory! This week, they used the hint and personal experience to identify the 7/24/93 "Weekapaug Groove" and 11/23/92 "Weekapaug Groove." As mentioned in the comments, the hint referred to the history of the song's lyrics, which came about in the back of a van while listening to "Oh, What a Night." The MJM will take the next couple weeks off, returning in mid-August for MJM384.
Welcome to the 382nd edition of Phish.Net's Mystery Jam Monday, the first since June! Thanks for your patience during our brief break, and we hope you enjoyed Summer Tour, 2019. How 'bout Alpine3? The winner will receive an MP3 download code courtesy of our friends at LivePhish.com / Nugs.Net. To win, be the first person to identify the songs and dates of the two mystery clips. The clips are connected by a theme, but the theme needn't be part of the correct answer. Each person gets one guess to start – if no one answers correctly in the first 24 hours, I'll post a hint. After the hint, everyone gets one more guess before Wednesday at 10 AM PT / 1 PM ET. Good luck!
Answer: Congrats to @garcia17 on nailing a huge MJM bustout win, claiming his second win overall and first since MJM154, six years ago next week. This week, he quickly identified the two big jams that didn't occur during the regularly scheduled shows at The Clifford Ball: the 8/15/96 soundcheck and the 8/17/96 "Flatbed Jam." MJM383 will drop Monday.
[Thank you user @Waxbanks, Wally Holland, for offering your thoughts on Between Me and My Mind, the documentary about Trey. Wally is the author of A Live One, a book in the 33 1/3 series by Bloomsbury about Phish's double-live album of the same name. As always, the thoughts expressed by guest authors on this blog are not necessarily shared by any of the many volunteers on Phish.net. -Ed.]
The documentary film Between Me and My Mind is conventionally structured: Trey Anastasio begins initial work on his "longform" solo project Ghosts of the Forest at The Barn while planning and prepping for the Baker’s Dozen and NYE 2017 with the other members of Phish; along the way we see him in staged 1-on-1 conversations with his wife, daughters, mother, and father. It’s an ordinary slice-of-working-life story about a recently sober 50something looking back on his life and finding inspiration to move ahead with more personal work. For Phish/Trey fans, and for anyone moved by tales of gifted people entering their autumn years, it will offer intense if familiar pleasures.
It being about Trey, though, it’ll also be a little strange.
And infectiously joyful. And idiosyncratically beautiful.
There is no release without tension.
[This recap is courtesy of Brian Brinkman user @howard_roark (@sufferingjuke / @_beyondthepond on Twitter). While the opinions expressed by a recapper on this site are not necessarily shared by any volunteer who works on phish.net, Brian is a volunteer on phish.net, so there's that. -Ed.]
Some Phish shows make you laugh. Some make you dance. Some make you rock out. Some make you think. Some freak you out. But the really rare and special kinds of shows leave you dumbfounded and speechless. Laughing incoherently, amazed at whatever it was you just witnessed, wearing a shit-eating grin, and incapable of putting into words what you and 30,000 others just experienced. Sunday night, July 14, 2019, was one of those rare & special Phish shows where everyone in the venue, and those following at home, all felt let in on a secret joke the band has been telling for 36 years. Bustouts, rarities, hi-jinks, lectures, and the longest jam of 3.0. It was a kitchen sink kind of a show and one that will surely be discussed with the best of the era, up there with 8/31/12 and 7/25/17.
[We would like to thank Doug Kaplan user @MrDougDoug (@hausumountain on Twitter) for recapping last night's Alpine show. Please note that the opinions expressed by a recapper on this site are not necessarily shared by any volunteer who works on phish.net. -Ed.]
Well here we are again, team. Another night at Alpine Valley: a venue that whenever I return to it, it feels like the venue’s farewell run. Surprisingly and delightfully, things have been roughly 42069% smoother than the last several runs I’ve attended, and it seems to me like the venue’s star may be rising again. Who knows y’all, maybe LiveNation finally sympathized with us, after all of the complaint emails after Bon Iver destroyed the galaxy? It’s certainly much more preferable for me when the band plays a hometown show in Chicago proper, but hey… renting a lake house with eleven of your best buds in the world is a pretty excellent way to spend a weekend.
In the “real world,” alpine holds a different meaning: mountain slopes, evergreens; otherwise peaceful, placid, serene - much like the drive through waving, rolling corn fields and green cow pastures that leads into the venue. But in our world, the other real world, Alpine means something a bit different; fire, energy, the summit, not the slopes. The final three shows of summer tour have led us here, to the fire, to the summit – to Alpine.
[Thank you Brad Krompf (@bradkrompf) for recapping last night's show at the Mohegan Sun. Please note that the opinions expressed by a recapper for a show on this blog are not necessarily those of any volunteer who works on Phish.net. We are all fans with varying opinions, just like you. -Ed]
It was about 7:30pm and we found ourselves in a ridiculously long line of relaxed people, coming in from a long day at the pool, gambling, or a number of other similarly incredible ways to spend a random Wednesday. I’m not certain if Mohegan N1 had an overwhelming amount of flow, but the entire “weekend” (which is what it felt like) had enough overflow to make up for it. Perhaps that overflow would spill into the arena tonight. Proudly donning my Hartford Whalers t-shirt, I was more patient waddling through the security line than I would’ve guessed. We had good friends around us, and despite growing up in Connecticut for my entire childhood, last night was the first time in at least 15 years I had slept there.
We got past security around 8:10 and ran when we heard the opening notes of “Buried Alive.” Without question the Phish from Vermont came to party and so did the crowd.
[Thank you @bl002e (Brian Levine) for recapping last night's show in Uncasville, CT. Please note that the opinions expressed by a recapper for a show on this blog are not necessarily those of any volunteer who works on Phish.net. We are all fans with varying opinions, just like you. -Ed]
The core of any game you’ll find in a casino is mathematics. Every card or die is given a numerical value. Vital to any winning strategy is knowing the percentages of probability. Personally, I’m not much of a gambler. However, as a big fan and participant of the maths, here’s a fun fact for my fellow numberphiles: last night marked the first time in exactly three years that Phish played a show in the Nutmeg State, continuing their 2010s trend of only playing Connecticut in years divisible by three (2010, 2013, 2016, 2019; three is indeed everywhere.) Moreover, it had been over 19 years since a CT venue made its debut; the following year saw the grand opening of Mohegan Sun Arena, our host for last night’s Phish show.
[Thank you @aisincl (Andrew Sinclair) for recapping last night's show in Boston, MA. Please note that the opinions expressed by a recapper for a show on this blog are not necessarily those of any volunteer who works on Phish.net. We are all fans with varying opinions, just like you. -Ed]
Seems that Most Events Aren’t Planned. Tonight once again reminded us to Surrender to the Flow, as the Phish from Vermont played an absolute heater of a show, in a unique environment (39,000 capacity shrine to Baseball) and with some unique meteorological ingredients.
[Thank you @jmart (Josh Martin) for recapping last night's show in Boston, MA -Ed.]
It’s your old pal Marty. First thing's first: I've been instructed to be explicit about the fact that this is a couch tour recap, so, you know, Caveat Emptor, etc. Onward.
When last we spoke, I was busy drooling over that Charlotte 6/21 show. Guess what? I’ve listened to the whole thing at least three times since then and to my ear it still stands up as the show of the tour and “Runaway Jim” the jam of the tour. More on those distinctions in a second.
After Charlotte we were treated to six solid shows from Merriweather, Bangor, and Camden, each with its own individual moments (the "Simple" from the first night of Bangor1 and the "Mercury" from Camden1 definitely belong in the conversation of notable jams.) Reports from the run at Camden varied wildly, with some folks saying the second night was a true heater to others saying it was one of the worst Phish shows in years. As with all things, the truth is probably somewhere in between.
Back at SPAC for night two and the last show of the 2019 summer tour run in Saratoga Springs. Weather pretty much the same as the previous night, high 80ºs, hazy sun, if a bit more humid and less breezy than Tuesday. Unlike night one, we got into the venue about an hour or so earlier so we could check out SPAC’s continually improving food and beverage selections (the former cheerless fencedâ€‘in, dirtâ€‘grounded “beer garden” quarantine zone being thankfully but a bad memory) and hang out in the picnic area at the back of the lawn to sit down, eat, drink and hang a while with some other random newfound tour friends.
With the exception of MSG (60 shows) and Dick’s (27 shows), SPAC (22 shows) is Phish’s most played venue (other than Burlington’s Nectar’s and The Front, neither played since 1991). Kat and I have been to 21 SPAC shows, missing only the first, 7/27/1992, when Phish did a short set opening for Santana. That was before we first got on the Phish bus in the spring and summer of the following year. Last night’s show was our 122nd show, give or take, since 1993.
[Thank you Dianna Hank user @Dianna_2Ns for recapping last night's show in Camden, NJ. -Ed.]
Several times over the course of my Phish-seeing career, the band has played a show that the vast majority of the fanbase has lost their collective (pebbles and) marbles over that I thought was just ok/good. Last night was one of those shows.
Summer Tour 2019 is the first actual tour since the creation of 10 Kasvot Vaxt iRokk songs and 21 Ghosts of the Forest songs. Assuming that all GOTF songs are on the table, that’s 31 new songs. What does a shit ton of new material mean? Huge risks, huge rewards.
I see two divergent forces driving Trey at this moment. On the one hand, he’s creating new music and always pushing forward and trying hard to make all of the new tunes work with his band. If you watch “Between Me and My Mind,” you’ll see how hard Trey works to get the rest of the band on board with his ideas, musically and otherwise. I think you can feel that this tour, particularly with the GOTF songs. This hard work is always present and recognizable.
And then there’s the flip side, the trying to let go. As Trey said in the recent New York Times interview, “I do as much preparation as I can, but once everybody gets in the room, I let go.”
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