Proof That Phish Has the World's Most Dedicated Fans

Categories: Phish

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Eric Gruneisen
1. They Come From Everywhere

Phish's following will literally follow the band anywhere. Many in attendance over the weekend at Dick's Sporting Goods Park flew in from all over the country. Some fans drove from Massachusetts and Vermont, in some cases without tickets, hoping to score some in the parking lot. Many fans used to follow Phish in the nineties and camp out, and now they are flying in and staying at hotels. We met people from all over the country. There seemed to be more non-locals than locals, especially in the Shakedown Street market/tailgating area outside the venue.

See also: Why Phish Shows Are Perfect for Recovering Addicts

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Outside the Phish Show, Weed Is for Sharing, the Pipes Are Art, and the Cops Are Friendly

Categories: Phish

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Eric Gruneisen
It didn't take long to run into weed at the Phish show. Within thirty minutes of going into Dick's Sporting Goods Park on Saturday, we saw concert-goers generously sharing hits on their pipes and puffs on their joints and vape pens. THC wax and shatter were also being passed around. The smell of marijuana throughout the venue was strong and constant.

Phish's infamous Shakedown, which was in the parking lot next to the show, is known for its tents of food, tie-dye shirts, Phish paraphernalia and drug paraphernalia. We spent a lot of time there Sunday to see just how many marijuana products we could find.

See also: Why Phish Shows Are Perfect for Recovering Addicts

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Why Phish Shows Are Perfect for Recovering Addicts

Categories: Phish

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Eric Gruneisen
Editor's note: A writer sent us this essay on her experience at one of this weekend's Phish shows at Dick's Sporting Goods Park -- the first with recovering-addict support she's seen since she stopped drinking six months ago. We're publishing it anonymously to protect her privacy.

When I tell people I don't drink, the normal response is, "Wait -- never?" For the last six months, I have chosen not to drink, and I hope I can choose not to drink for the next six months, and the next six months after that, and the next six after that, for the rest of my life. The first question many acquaintances have is, "How do I go to so many concerts, then?"

Being stone-cold sober at a concert makes me a minority (for most concerts I go to). But this weekend at the Phish concert, I didn't feel so alone because there was a community of also-stone-cold-sober people at a bright-yellow table, ready to give support to others like me. Phellowship, "a community of Phish Heads who choose to remain drug and alcohol free" was set up in the very center of the arena, parallel to the stage.

See also: A Guide to Phish's On-Stage Hand Signals, From Drunken Bar Swing to Pork Tornado

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Photos: When the Apocalypse Comes, Phish Fans Will Outlive Us All

Categories: Phish

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Eric Gruneisen
Phish returns to Dick's Sporting Goods Park this weekend for its 84th, 85th and 86th shows in Colorado. I know that thanks to the meticulous documentation available at phish.net. Also thanks to phish.net, I can tell you when the band first played in Colorado (July 28, 1988 at the Roma in Telluride), the number of Colorado bands Phish has covered (two) and the number of times it says "Colorado" in its lyrics (one).

But that relentless attention to detail is not why Phish fans will survive the apocalypse. It is why they'll rebuild a new society, a place where your fate will be decided in a drum circle and the thousands of annotated set lists will offer logic and truth in a world of deceit. They will survive because they are nothing if not resourceful. What follows are some highlights of our previous coverage of the campground and tailgating scene at Phish shows in years' past, and they tell the story of a people ready to lounge together and withstand any horror.

See also: Phish's Twenty Most Interesting Covers

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A guide to Phish's on-stage hand signals, from Drunken Bar Swing to Pork Tornado

Categories: Phish

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Eric Gruneisen. Full slideshow.
You're not a real fan until you know the hand signals. These fine folks definitely know the hand signals.
When a band doesn't rely on a set list, musicians often find other ways to communicate on stage during the music. Phish, a band utterly reliant on improvisation, has gotten particularly good at this. In fact, the band has created a whole non-verbal language to let its members know what song to go into next.

We've put together a collection of hand signals that have been caught on tape and created a handy guide and naming system so you can figure out what they're doing up there. Some of the signals make sense, others...are a bit of a stretch. So we've also graded each of them, from one to ten Mike Gordon fight bells. For the uninitiated: More fight bells are better. They're like cowbell in that way.

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Before Mike Gordon's Reddit AMA today, the Phish bassist answers a few of our questions

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Eric Gruneisen

After a few years of songwriting collaboration with Max Creek's Scott Murawski, Mike Gordon's latest effort is finally ready for consumption with the release of his new album, Overstep. Over the years, the man also known as the bassist of Phish has released numerous albums with his own band, each building just a little off the theme that came before. Overstep is chock-full of offbeat melodies, tricky rhythms and some of Gordon's best vocals.

See also: The twenty best jams of Phish 3.0

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The best moments from Phish's NYE MSG run

Categories: Phish

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Eric Gruneisen

When Phish set up shop in New York last week for New Year's, there was a lot of talk about city Stop and Frisk program, warnings to fans to be mindful when hanging out outside Madison Square Garden. And while those admonitions proved to be prescient, the most pressing thing on everybody's mind was what stunt the band would be attempting to pull off this year for its 30th Anniversary. There was talk of Gamehendge, perhaps another cover set or maybe even Fishman flying through the arena in a wingsuit, but when the truck started to drive out into the crowd, we all knew we were in for something very special. Here are the best moments leading up to and including the Phish New Year's Eve celebration for its 2013 winter run.

See also: The twelve best moments from Phish's fall tour

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The twenty best jams of Phish 3.0

Categories: Lists, Phish

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Brandon Marshall

When Phish reunited in 2009, the 3.0 era of the band was born. While classics like "Tweezer" and "Carini" still reap fantastic rewards, newer songs have been given a chance to shine and grow, be it through psychedelic looping or rapid-fire staccato rhythms. Despite what some may say, Phish still jam, and we've got the twenty best jams of 3.0.

See also: The twelve best moments from Phish's fall tour

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The twelve best moments from Phish's fall tour

Categories: Lists, Phish

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Brandon Marshall

There was a lot of excitement leading up to Phish's Fall tour, as indoor Phish is a whole different monster from the summer shed extravaganzas that leave you in the sunlight for the first set; these shows get dark and dirty from the get go. The band rehearsed and wrote new material in a barn together prior to the Fall tour, and the work they put in was evident as new life was breathed into old classics that had become pretty standard, as well as just the sheer difference in moods that the same song would have on any given night. Here are the twelve best musical moments of the 2013 Phish Fall Tour.

See also: The twenty best versions of Phish classics

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Trey Anastasio Band at Ogden Theatre, January 28-29, tickets on sale Saturday, November 23

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Fresh off Phish's highly talked-about Halloween run, in which the band debuted new songs from Wingsuit, its forthcoming album, Trey Anastasio is getting back on the road with the Trey Anastasio Band. The outfit is due in Denver for a two-night stand on Tuesday, January 28, and Wednesday, January 29. Tickets ($42.50, plus fees) go on sale this Friday, November 15, at treytickets.rlc.net, and will otherwise be on sale to the general public on Saturday, November 23, at 10 a.m.

See also: The twenty best versions of Phish classics

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