My trip to Jones Beach last Tuesday began the same way as every trip to Long Island begins: with a little bit of apprehension and a whole lot of traffic— however, this time, I also had a cooler full of booze. Since this journey to happened to end in a Phish show, my instinctual desire to turn around (and head back to The Continent) was dulled. Due to a touch of the OCD, I felt compelled to re-check my wallet for the correct ticket at random moments throughout the drive, you know- just to make sure it was still there… and that it was still the correct ticket for the right night. See, it would be a real shame if somehow my ticket managed to make it’s way out of my wallet and get caught in a breeze through a cracked-open window (the windows were closed) and flew out onto the Cross Bronx somewhere. Thankfully, it didn’t. Phew.
One of the best things about Phish Tour is getting to see and enjoy shows with so many friends gathered in one place. It’s social multi-tasking. It’s a big fucking party! I met up with some of said friends and we pre-gamed appropriately for such an occasion: Phish’s 2010 Summer Tour closing run at Jones Beach. Hershey Park was a lot of fun, but wasn’t completely satisfying. This being the end of the tour, I hoped the boys would have their Tour Legs on and be ready to kick some major ass, as per the 2009 MSG run. Everyone sorted out their extras and I drank girly-drinks out of a red Solo cup. Life was good. We packed on a buzz and headed inside.
My buddy brought his Dad to see Phish for the first time. We swung by the merch booth where Mr. H was disappointed in the hat selection. More specifically, the colors seemed to be a let-down, because “The Dead would never make a hat in those colors.” Blue & white? I bought a sweet, blue t shirt, cuz I’m a merch-whore.
The view on our long walk upstairs to the Mezzanine was of a clusterphuck starting at the gates. Looked fun.
Eventually, the theater filled in, the house-lights dimmed, and Fluffhead was the rockin’ opener. Kill Devil Falls kept the place moving. Cities was, as always, a sing-a-long. Funky Bitch, was better at Hershey, but still enjoyable. Wilson… was when I made a break for the restroom and a relocation. It wasn’t nearly loud enough on the Mezz and I couldn’t take it any longer. BAH!
Thankfully (and wisely), Security seemed to have already given up on any sort of fruitless attempt at an Ushering system and I was able to find + rock out with the L.I. Wrecking Crew in section 2, halfway across row HH (save that chunk of info for later), for the rest of the set. Reba was splendid, but everyone went totally bonkers— as they should- for Walk Away, which featured The Masters at work. Phish with their Tour Legs is a fucking fantastic sound! Wolfman’s jam was groovin’, and then with Possum, came some more wondering of why I end up seeing the same songs at every damn show I go to (yes, still a little angry about Bonnaroo). I took a timeout to check my fantasy baseball stats (Viva Los Tijuana Donkeys!).
Setbreak was an ungrouping and regrouping of sorts. I met up with Mike & Mark, who presented me with a giant-lemonade, the size of my head- and we headed to the section behind the tapers. Best Seats In The House.
Set II began with a crazy fucking sugar rush from that ridiculous lemonade. That lemonade needed booze-content to counteract the effects of the sugar-content. Phish were onstage whispering to each other in what looked like a last minute setlist change and Fishman began to sing (quite beautifully, really) Lengthwise -> tappa tappa and I thought of my poor friend Melissa who has managed to miss every performance of the one song she really really wants to hear and how she wasn’t at the show that night but was surely checking the web updates -> Maze. She would not be happy. But I was, because It was fucking awesome Maze! Sorry, Melissa.
Halley’s Comet > a loud Mike’s > GIANT Simple. Wow it was HUGE and brought me back to 1994. -> Backwards Down the Number Line, which I don’t not-like and may actually be growing on me— but coming off that Simple, it felt anticlimactic. > Prince Caspian, which is another song I always see, felt meh. Rock and Roll I am pretty sure I do hear at every show, so they kinda lost me with the start of this one, but the end actually picked up and went somewhere new- totally dug it! > a dirty low-end Weekapaug the way it should be. A Weekapaug of which I wanted MORE. Then, a nice Loving Cup to end it out. I wondered if that poor girl with no rhythm from the Jimmy Fallon show was doing The Elaine all over Jones Beach.
Encore started with The Show Of Life, a sleepy choice… just sayin’. Then a fun, romping Golgi, which has never been the same since Great Woods last year when my brother declared, “Hey, I have a ticket-stub in my hand! I can relate!”.
Is it just me or is it really hard to stand at the Jones Beach theater all night? I could feel the outline of each pebble in the ground burning into my poor, achy feet. Pass the Liquid Advil, please.
For those keeping score, Mr. H (my buddy’s dad) – despite being disappointed in the merch selection, loved his first Phish show! Yaaay!
08/17/10 Nikon at Jones Beach Theatre, Wantagh, NY
Set I: Fluffhead, Kill Devil Falls, Cities, Funky Bitch, Wilson, Reba, Walk Away, Wolfman’s Brother, Possum
Set II: Lengthwise> Maze, Halley’s Comet> Mike’s Song> Simple> Backwards Down The Number Line> Prince Caspian> Rock and Roll> Weekapaug Groove, Loving Cup
Encore: Show Of Life, Golgi Apparatus