Photo Credit: Steven Rood

On Friday, June 14, Mike Gordon concluded a two-night Southern California series to set off his summer solo touring. With a show at Solana Beach, Calif.’s Belly Up Tavern on Thursday, June 13, and another at Los Angeles’ Teragram Ballroom on the following evening, the artist set an extremely high bar for shows to come, demonstrating his strong awareness with the will of the fans and desire to stir up the discourse. Definite highlights from this pair were the hotly-anticipated debut of “Human Nature” and a guest appearance from Drew Carey, who revisited the Sphere blender saga onstage.

Gordon’s Thursday performance commenced as a relatively straight-ahead run through some Phish fan favorites in a quintet format, with support from Scott Murawski, Craig Myers, John Kimock and Robert Walter. Some featured cuts from the first set, included “Mull,” “Meat,” “Crazy Sometimes” and Gordon’s third-ever solo treatment of “Louisiana Sun.” When the secons set rolled in, after an opener of “Haywire,” the artist amazed fans with the coveted “Human Nature,” which arrived as the live debut of the only completely unfamiliar entry on Phish’s forthcoming 16th studio album Evolve, due to release on July 12. The latest cut is a terse, propulsive funk beat, which shines with some masterful improvisatory fills from Gordon at the helm.

“Human Nature” returned on Friday, but by the time it landed in the second set, the crowd at the Teragram Ballroom had already seen it all. For the closing entry of his first frame of the evening, Gordon set out the beloved “Tiny Little World” from his 2014 solo LP Overstep, which became a vehicle for what has since been termed the “blender jam.” As he raced through the standout select, the artist made jaws drop when he pulled out a blender and held a microphone to the whirring appliance in the middle of a spaced-out, contemplative jam. Before long, Carey emerged to rehearse his widely circulated blender incident, when the comedian and The Price Is Right host rose to the heights of Phish fandom for testifying that he’d do terrible things for a chance to see the band at Las Vegas’ Sphere again. After sauntering onstage, Carey fished around in his pockets for a while and whipped out a vegan sausage, tossing it into the still-running blender to the delight of fans everywhere.

Carey’s rapid entry into the Phish fold began with a cheeky and striking tweet, in which he swore that “I would give you all my money, stick my dick in a blender and swear off pussy for the rest of my life in exchange for this.” Wide-eyed at the majesty of peak-performance Phish, he concluded, “Bro I met God tonight for real. I feel like I just got saved by Jesus no lie.” Phish noted their appreciation for Carey’s glowing review by gifting him a blender, with a message from frontman Trey Anastasio, who penned on the boxed kitchen appliance, “So thrilled you could be at The Sphere with us! Hope you enjoy this gift and let’s do it again.” 

Tonight, June 15, Gordon will return to the stage with a set at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley, Calif., marking his first opening performance on Vampire Weekend’s Only God Was Above Us Tour. The artist will continue alongside the indie-rock vanguard for four further stagings through June 20. For tickets to Vampire Weekend’s West Coast sprint, visit For more information on Mike Gordon’s summer touring plans, visit