The last week of 2012 marked the second time I made it out to see Phish play their New Year run at Madison Square Garden in the amazing New York City. I went last year and after determining that there is no other way to spend the holiday, myself and good friend, Jonny, got tickets for two nights at the Garden.
This year alone I got to see the jam band giants at three different venues; Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Manchester, Tennessee, SPAC in Saratoga Springs, New York, and starting off with floor seats at their NYE opener on December 28th, only to close with nosebleeds the following day.
I have heard “phans” from all over the country tell me how many hundreds of shows they have seen. I can’t touch what they have seen, or the Phish knowledge they have acquired over the years. I will say that with under 10 shows now safely etched into my repertoire, there is no stopping me. I am definitely considered a new fan of the music, having only started listening to the band within the past two years. For a band that started in the ’80s, one could consider me late to the party.
I grew up on r&b and pop music, and now, after clarity found me at 25 years-old, I realized that hands-down, Phish and other jam-related bands (alongside my alternative rock) is the music that best suits who I am and what gets my ears off best. Who can hate on that?
So, Jonny and myself stayed at Hotel Pennsylvania on West 34th, which- luckily for drunk concert-goers- is directly across the street from MSG. I will refrain from going into detail about how we got lost trying to find our hotel at the end of the show. I mean…. that didn’t happen.
Below are just a few photos I took. The Green Mountain State quartet took MSG by storm. Their shows were so powerful you could practically see the energy floating in a vibrant rhythm above the heads of the fans below (that would be 75,000 fans over the course of the band’s run- according to Glide Magazine). I could have sworn at one point I could feel the floor shake.
Trey’s guitar playing pulsated through me in a way I never thought music could. I was so enlightened by the deeper vibrations of Mike Gordon’s bass, and still am when I listen back to the show. The keys of Page McConnell’s piano tap dance with color in front of me when I hear him going at it during Reba. The sound of Jon Fishman’s drumming slithers through me with delight; flows through me just enough to be able to simultaneously hear bass, guitar, piano, voice and practically melt to the floor that is dancing along with me.
Below are some photos I snapped but there is honestly nothing I could have taken that could describe the sheer pleasure of being at Madison Square Garden for their New Year’s ’12-’13 run. Not one thing.
For a complete NYE Phish setlist, visit here!