I haven’t been to a Phish show since 2002? Hampton was the last one and that show left a bad taste in my mouth… crowds were getting maced by police on horseback in the parking lot and the amount of kids on heroin face first on the pavement was alarming. (why the hell would you get a ticket to a show and then get so junked out you don’t make it inside the show? major fail.) so yeah, no me gusto.
That was also around the same time ‘real life’ started happening and the schedule fills up and running off on tour becomes hard.
but i remembered how glorious it could be – Summer of 98’ – HTFSUAA Tour – Best Summer hands down. The Gorge!
I also haven’t really listened to much phish since then. I loved their live show – that was my jam. I never just listened to them. Then I started making photos of THOR, an incredible program that basically teaches kids how to be rockstars (and good people) and I started to hear the songs again in their jam program sets. At those shows I rediscovered my love for the songs. and yeah man, Phish has some damn good songs. but more so than that, they are damn good musicians…which is why the live shows always held my interest.
So I was pretty excited when the talented musician and photographer and recent Thor graduate, Karina Rykman, invited me to go along with her & some friends to the Atlantic City Phish show. I hoped the scene and the sound was the best of what I remembered….. and it was. x500.
I only saw cops in the photo pit during the encore and while they were dressed in riot gear, they were all smiling and laughing. The crowd was ecstatically happy – dancing, spinning, laughing. There was one poor fella who had to be coaxed out of a port-a-potty by the medical team… poor fella… a port-a-potty may be the worst place to have a bad trip. shudder. but that was the only rough situation that I noticed.
and the show. damn guys. you fucking killed it. when they started with mike’s song, I got pretty excited figuring for weekapaug groove and they followed through. i love that jam. The pulled out a lot of great ones – Wolfman’s bro, Possum, Suzy Greenber & Golgi Apparatus were some of my faves. They closed with the zepplin Good Times, Bad Times, which was badass.
The night was a blast. I’m back in love with the Phish live shows. Oh how I wish I had the time to throw my shit in my car and get on the road.