Don't miss Mike Greenhaus's interview on Jambands.com of Chris Kuroda, which discusses the ideas behind the use of video screens this summer, and Chris's other work.
Welcome to the 232nd edition of Mystery Jam Monday! Continuing with our Hall of Fame Series, where we welcome one of our nine, seven-time MJM winners into the MJM recording studio, and let that Emeritus winner select the tracks for this week's competition. For week 6 of this Emeritus Series, we welcome @mcgrupp81, the sixth person forced into mandatory retirement after impressively earning seven victories between November 2012 and November 2015.
To win, be the first person to identify the song and date of each of the three mystery jam clips, and answer what they share in common. Each person gets one attempt per day, with the second “day” starting after the Blog posts the hint -- each answer should contain three songs / dates, along with the commonality between them. No sharing or trading of answers is allowed. A hint will be posted on Tuesday if necessary, with the answer to follow on Wednesday. The winner will receive one MP3 code good for a free download of any show, courtesy of our friends at LivePhish.com / Nugs.Net. Good luck, and thanks again to @mcgrupp81 for hosting this sixth week of the MJM Hall of Fame Series.
Hint: "I was asked to provide a hint, and I am only doing so because you guys are such a great, attentive audience."
Hint regarding the 2nd Track: Just as the faithful dog McGrupp likes to keep close to the heal of his master, Colonel Forbin, the song from which the 2nd track was selected is closely associated with and adjacent to another, larger song. It is this leading song, the master if you will, which relates specifically to this week's theme.
Answer: Congratulations to @Schvice, who not only takes down a doozy MJM and earns his seventh victory, but as a result, he is now forced into mandatory retirement, becomeing only the 10th person to join the Hall of Champions Emeritus Club. @Schvice accomplished this feat by correctly identifying the tracks: Wilson from 12/8/92, the Jam after McGrupp from 7/5/98, and AC/DC Bag from 2/14/03, as well as the theme: Gamehendge Songs. Special thanks to this week's Emeritus host, @mcgrupp81 who selected the tracks and theme.
In the last few weeks, we have witnessed the expansion of the Emeritus Club, as victories by @ucpete, @WayIFeel and now @Schvice have increased its membership from seven to ten. Will a new generation of MJM savants materialize, or will the Blog finally improve its dismal win-loss record? Only one way to find out: tune in next Monday for MJM Part 233, as the Emeritus Series continues with our guest host, @yunkfunk.
[Editor's Note: We'd like to welcome guest contributor Pete Hoherd (@FunkyCFunkyDo) for this recap.]
Palm fronds shrugged effortlessly at us on our final approach into the venue. Swaying peacefully, purposefully, their silent grace showed us more life lessons than a year’s worth of living – some years at least. Listen to the silent trees. The dry grass on the rolling hills knew what the trees knew – rhythmically dancing in the same breeze as if they knew no other way of life. The music hadn’t started yet, but the harmony had. It was all around us, on the wind and under water, a subtle, relaxed energy, softly speaking to us. All it took was a moment away from your phone, your beer, even your best friend, to look around and feel that mellow mood unifying. All it took was that moment to know that something special was on the wind this night.
Photo © Derek Gregory
On Friday night, Phish rolled into The Forum in Inglewood, CA for the third consecutive year and the penultimate show of the 2016 summer tour. After an unusually sluggish opening two weeks of the campaign, starting with Great Woods Phish had returned to mid-season form, including most recently a successful run in San Francisco that featured entertaining jams and a bounty of bustouts. The tour has seen its fair share of ups and downs, but with an upward arc and two high-profile, webcasted, weekend gigs to wrap up, the hammer was theirs to pull out the come-from-behind tour championship. Let’s see how they did.
Photo © Derek Gregory
IT does not happen often: a Phish set with "bustouts" so plentiful that as each one begins, the excited utterances of fans intensify, fostering a revelry of Dionysian proportions. Although it was only a month ago that Phish performed a show with many bustouts (6/22/2016), shows like this are still rare. And when in the course of such phishy events it becomes necessary to SCREAM FEVERISHLY, in a room ablaze with vibration, at yet another song you never believed you’d see Phish play, you realize you are at THAT show. Phish reminded each one of us in attendance last night at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco why we fell in love with them, and why we continue to see them whenever life permits.
Photo by Rene Huemer © Phish, used with permission
Cheers everyone and welcome back to the second night of Phish at the historic Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in one of my favorite domestic cities, San Francisco. As was touched on in yesterday’s recap, there is a magical energy that is unparalleled when Phish tour moves from the breathtaking venue of the Gorge to indoors where I think Phish fires on all cylinders. Indoor Phish shows create a feeling of intimacy which allows the fifth member of the band, CK5 to truly shine his light and harmonious bliss ensues creating the trifecta of band, lights, immaculate sound and unity with the crowd. Disclaimer: I was not able to attend the show live regrettably, so this recap is based on my critical listening to the show. Without further ado, here we go!
Photo: Jake Silco
Following a beautiful weekend at the Gorge, Phish and many of their rabid fans followed the lines going south to The City by the Bay to see the band take the stage at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium for the tenth time in the past four years. Last summer, the band skipped a three night run at BGCA for the first time since 2012, in favor of a single show at Shoreline – a move that ended up paying off big time. The crowd assembled outside the venue and City Hall early on Monday, and the party blazed on into the night. Unlike the 2014 weekday run, there was not an abundance of extras on “Shakedown” – there were more fingers in the air than there were tickets.
At 8:07 PM, the band took the stage to a raucous applause from the fans, and Page started off the festivities with a sample: “You have been selected...”. The band wasted no time blasting off into “Martian Monster,” opening a show for the third time ever and played for the fourth time in sixteen shows this tour. The trip was relatively short, but definitely sweet, and when we disembarked, Mike greeted us in the native tongue with a “Bee Chew Ba Ba Bajingo” as the band continued the spacey theme with “Halley’s Comet.” Like most renditions of late, this version was well-played and completely inside the box. And for the fifth time in “3.0,” “Halley’s” careened (in-key) into “46 Days.” As the first jam developed, Trey found a gnarly tone that he paired nicely with an ascending riff that signaled to his bandmates and the crowd that a peak was coming. After settling into the vocal coda, Trey immediately catapulted the band back into the stratosphere for another sharp peak before winding down again and taking a short breather after an energetic start to the set.
Photo by Dave Vann (c) Phish, used with permission
Welcome to the 231st edition of Mystery Jam Monday! This week we continue with our Hall of Fame Series, where we welcome one of our eight, seven-time MJM winners into the MJM recording studio, and let that Emeritus winner select the tracks for this week's competition. For week 5 of this Emeritus Series, we welcome @PersnicketyJim, the fifth person forced into mandatory retirement after taking the Blog by storm with seven victories in the span of twenty-six MJMs.
To win, be the first person to identify the song and date of each of the four mystery jam clips, and answer what they share in common. Each person gets one attempt per day, with the second “day” starting after the Blog posts the hint -- each answer should contain four songs / dates, along with the commonality between them. No sharing or trading of answers is allowed. A hint will be posted on Tuesday if necessary, with the answer to follow on Wednesday. The winner will receive one MP3 code good for a free download of any show, courtesy of our friends at LivePhish.com / Nugs.Net. Good luck, and thanks again to @PersnicketyJim for hosting this fifth week of the MJM Hall of Fame Series.
Hint: There is a reason there are four clips this week.
Answer: Congratulations to @WayIFeel who recorded his seventh MJM victory by correctly identifying this week's four clips: "Say Something" from 8/30/13, a Mike Gordon penned song; "Mr. Completely" from 7/15/03, a Trey Anastasio song; "Heavy Rotation" from 7/22/15, by Page McConnell; and "Ha Ha Ha" from 2/26/97, a Jon Fishman song. The theme, also identified, was songs credited to an individual member of the band. It appeared that the blog might score a rarified victory, but in the final hour, @WayIFeel came through with the correct answers and theme. With this victory, he now retires from regular participation, and becomes only the ninth member of the Hall of Fame Club comprising all the retired seven time winners. Fortunately we will welcome @WayIFeel back in just a few weeks, when moves across the table and selects the theme and clips for week 9 of the MJM Emeritus Series. Special thanks to @PersnicketyJim for a really great MJM Emeritus theme and clips. So close. So close.... Please join us next Monday, July 25, when week 6 of the MJM Emeritus Series will launch, hosted by Emeritus Champion @mcgrupp81. Also wishing happy and safe travles to regular MJM host and Emeritus Champion number eight, @ucpete. See you all next week!
Although I will always consider shows at The Gorge to be homecourt experiences, the truth of the matter is that the venue is actually a long way from my old home place in Portland. After breaking down camp, wishing safe travels back to reality to friends old and new, and making the five hour journey (seven if you count the interminably long lunch stop in Goldendale for some delicious Tacos Al Pastor) home, I then took a 12-hour power nap. Making up for most of the sleep I didn’t get during another lost weekend spent deep inside the Phish bowl. As a consequence this recap is arriving fairly late...but hopefully just under the wire before those of you hitting the floor running at BGCA get ready to do your thing. I never expected to wake up to a universe where Gronk would be joining Paul McCartney and Bob Weir on stage for a performance of “Helter Skelter”...but I did...so I’ll roll with it for now.
Photo: Brian Feller
The Gorge. Just saying the words brings to mind something larger than life. A venue that still uses a name that does not sell energy or internet or banking is rare enough, but this place is easily in the upper echelon of rock music venues in the world. Every time I return to The Gorge, soaking in the big-ness of it all still amazes as much as it did the very first time I stepped over that hill. Phish’s 15th appearance in the high desert of eastern Washington brought possibly the set of the tour so far with what I like to call the “7 Layer Dip” approach. Set two’s “Crosseyed and Painless” opener provided the base for layering the rest of the set’s songs upon, and mixed in with each other, which yielded quite a tasty musical blend.
Making the trek to The Gorge invariably involves an elevated level of planning and just plain dealing. Whether you are camping on site or staying in one of the nearby riverside resort areas, you pretty much need to bring everything you need for the whole weekend. There is scant to no shade on the entire property, temperatures can vary wildly from day to night, and the wind can pack a big punch. It’s a relatively harsh environment juxtaposed against one of North America’s most majestic wonders, the mighty Columbia River.
photo Brian Feller