We recently asked those of you who are passionate about live music to email us with stories of your favorite concert experiences. To all of you who sent us your stories, we had a wonderful time reading your submissions. Not only were they fun to read, but they were personal, insightful, and successful in translating what made these specific shows so important to each and every one of you. Reading the submissions, it was clear how close these experiences are to your hearts and we thank you all for sharing them. There were some stories, however, that really stood out to us. Like this one, which comes from Eric Martin.
It was the 4th of July. The party starts early at phish shows… you’d show up to the parking lot around 3:00 PM for a show that won’t start until 8:30 PM. You’d have some beers, sit under a shade tent, you’d either be grilling, or you’d go in search of someone else grilling (“Get your sexy grilled cheese! One for $2, two for $3! Two slices of bread with the butter spread, sexy grilled cheese!”). Jam sessions in the shade with friends, or you’d just go walking. There’s some great people watching in the Phish lot.
Phish has no openers and plays two sets. The first set was blistering with some amazing guitar work, but it was set two where the magic happened. Ghost > Slave to the Traffic Light. At this point, the sun has set and Chris Kuroda’s legendary light show is in full effect. The Ghost went into some dark, spacey improvised jam that lasted about 13 minutes until it seamlessly blended into the intro the Slave. The Slave was played very well. It’s the Slave jam where the memories were made. It starts very sparse. Trey, Mike, and Page are dancing around the A, G, D, E chord progression, without actually landing on it. This beautiful soft melody grows and builds until Trey starts the meat of his solo, a simple repeating pattern with fills to break up the monotony. Eventually, they are playing the most intense progression I’ve ever heard and the crowd, all 19,000 of us, are going absolutely nuts. It was the only time music, not the words, but just the music has made me cry. Tears of absolute joy.
Here’s the soundboard recording of the segment, if you’re curious… you don’t have to like Phish to appreciate it:
(Waiting on that 4th big box, y’all)