Share
Band

July 1995

Phish began their 1995 summer tour in Boise, Idaho on June 7, played 2 shows at Colorado’s scenic Red Rocks Amphitheatre, and continued on from there, playing shows in outdoor amphitheatres across the country. Many new tunes had been premiered at Lowell Memorial Auditorium the previous May 15th during a Voters for Choice benefit, and the summer saw more originals played for the first time, including Taste, Acoustic Army, and Prince Caspian. The band introduced a number of new covers during the summer tour as well, including The Beatles’ A Day in the Life, Bob Marley’s Three Little Birds (with members of Dave Matthews Band as special guests), and Chuck Berry’s Johnny B. Goode. On June 27 "A Live One", the band’s first live CD (recorded in 1994), was released on Elektra Records. By the end of the tour on July 3, the band had played 19 shows in 23 days, including two nights of sold-out shows at Great Woods in Mansfield, Massachusetts on June 30th and July 1st. The second show was broadcast on Boston’s WBCN FM, which had also broadcast several New Year’s Eve shows. Set I on the second night at Great Woods contained a few surprises: If I Could featured a new introduction that flowed out of the Llama that preceded it, and It’s Ice featured Fish on the Electrolux and Mike playing an electric drill, a technique he’d debuted on June 15th in Atlanta. The audience, who had endured summer heat and a serious traffic jam on the way into the venue, was treated to a Funky Bitch encore which Trey dedicated to "the tourheads" who often requested the tune. On July 2nd, Phish returned home to end the summer tour at the Summer Stage at Sugarbush North in Fayston, Vermont. On site overnight parking and camping were allowed and an unusually large number of people made the trek to the two Independence Day weekend sold-out shows.The July 2nd concert was a benefit for the King Street Youth Center in Burlington. Despite the show being a benefit, many fans hiked through the woods and mountainous terrain to sneak into the show for free. The band played a sparkling show, from the Sample in a Jar opener into a moving Divided Sky, a bouncy Gumbo and the "break out" of the first Camel Walk of the 1990′s. Set I ended with While My Guitar Gently Weeps and before the tune began, Trey thanked the crowd for coming and suggested "for those of you who were kind of walking through the woods and found yourself at the concert, perhaps you can take the money you would have spent on a ticket and donate it to the King Street Youth Center." Set II featured the rarely heard Fish original Ha Ha Ha, which segued smoothly out of Tweezer. The show wrapped up with a Halley’s Comet > Tweezer Reprise encore, leaving the crowd anticipating what the next night would bring.

On July 3rd, the band kicked off the evening with My Friend, My Friend, during which Trey used his mic stand as a guitar slide. Set I also featured Run Like an Antelope, Loving Cup and interesting band/audience interaction during If I Could when an inflatable moose was thrown around only to land on the stage near Page. He picked it up and took it with him as the set ended. During the setbreak, Paul was summoned backstage from the mix position to refresh the band on the lyrics to Timber Ho!, spawning pointed teleprompter jokes. Set II opened with Timber Ho!/David Bowie sandwiching Johnny B. Goode and featuring teases of Bathtub Gin and Santana’s Soul Sacrifice. This was the first performance of Timber Ho! since the December 30, 1992 performance at Springfield’s Symphony Hall. AC/DC Bag and Lizards followed. Lizards’ lyrics didn’t come out quite right and it was subsequently aborted by Trey. Fish teased Trey onstage about needing a teleprompter and Trey responded by launching into Big Black Furry Creature, during which he whipped himself into a frenzy, throwing items into the crowd and running his signature laps around the stage while his trademark Languedoc guitar hung precariously in the balance. The set ended with an encore of Simple and Amazing Grace and another tour was history. These were the last Phish concerts at Sugarbush, as the band had unfortunately outgrown the venue. The search was on for a new Vermont area concert site and this led to the chance finding of the decommissioned Plattsburgh Air Force Base, where they held the Clifford Ball the following summer.

The band made a brief reappearance on July 13th on the Late Show with David Letterman at New York City’s Ed Sullivan Theatre. There they performed the single from "Hoist", Julius, accompanied by a four-piece horn section which included longtime collaborator from Burlington Dave "The Truth" Grippo on alto saxophone and two members of the Blues Brothers Band. After returning home from New York City, Phish spent July 15th and 16th with Rolling Stone head photographer Mark Seliger and his assistants for an extended still photo shoot outdoors around Vermont. During the shoot, the band was outfitted in a number of costumes (including caveman outfits, dresses, and various stages of undress) and placed in a number of scenarios (including swimming in water, posed with acoustic instruments on Mike’s Porch, and immersed in a tub of olive oil packed tight as a can of sardines). The shoot eventually provided the photographic images used in the Rolling Stone article by Parke Puterbaugh entitled "Phresh Phish" in the February 20, 1997 issue.