Yea I am thinking about the Watkins Glen Shows - I am definitely doing the Blossom Music Center/ Cuyahoga Falls (Cleveland) Show. C.F is a few miles south and about 20 min from me. I am doing Pit for that. Seeing a supposed excellent Phish tribute band this weekend at a music festival along with a lot of other stuff.
Yeah - back in the day Jon Fishman used to wear a dress a lot on stage and also a shower curtain at times. They used to do a lot of silly/hokey things back then - playing a vaccuum cleaner - secret language audience participation stuff etc. Nowadays little of that goes on and is mostly reserved for their own festivals which typically have only them in a multi-day setting.
Coventry was the seventh of nine weekend-long festivals hosted by the rock band Phish. The event took place from August 13–15, 2004, at a farm in the small town of Coventry, Vermont. An estimated 65,000-68,000 attended.
Phish was the only band at the event, performing six sets of music over two nights that were, until their 2009 reunion, the band's final live performances. Fans camped on site in tents, creating a community that became the largest city in Vermont over the weekend.
110,000 people were expected to attend. It was simulcast to thousands more in movie theaters across America. The event was also simulcast on XM Satellite Radio. Unfortunately, a week of rain had flooded the concert field to the point where people were turned away, causing gridlock on the highway and roads leading to the site. Rumors circulated that the stage was sinking. The band had made use of a local radio station turning it into "The Bunny" radio with live reports. These reports requested patience from concert goers. However when Phish Bassist Mike Gordon came on the radio, he announced that the field and venue were in a state of disaster and that no more vehicles would be allowed into the venue. Rumor spread up and down the traffic lines that Phish would play another concert, since less than 20,000 fans had made it into the venue.
Instead of turning away and despite warnings from the National Guard, tens of thousands parked their cars on highway medians, in breakdown lanes, and on the sides of roads. Then they hiked in to the concert venue, some walking as far as 30 miles to the venue. Local residents stepped in and began shuttling fans in and out of the site and to their vehicles. Despite efforts by attendees, trash accumulated from fans stuck along the road. The bill for the subsequent cleanup was sent from the State of Vermont to the Phish organization who picked up the bill in its entirety.
The concert included some songs written at Coventry to glorify members of the team (Bruno and Dicky Scotland). The band gave away their trampolines during "You Enjoy Myself". They broke down crying onstage several times, most notably when Page McConnell choked up during the ballad "Wading in the Velvet Sea." Unable to continue singing, he turned the microphone to the audience, who took over in chorus.
I was at that the final concert before their at the time swan song break-up show.
I sat in a traffic Jam for 48 hours barely moving (maybe a few hundred meters over that time. Then somebody on the highway on the other side of the road fdell asleep at the wheel crossed the median and ran into my parked car (which was on the freeway in gridlock. The damage ended up being so bad that my car was totalled out but it was drivable barely - the trunk was smashed and knocked into my back seat mainly - we pulled the debris from around the wheels as I needed to drive it back home (14 hours drive) and managed. It was a few hours after that happened that Mike made the cancellation announcement and people started abandoning their cars on the freeway myself included. Me and my buddy walked 12 miles with all our camp gear and provisions on our back to the muddy bog that was the camp area/stage and then again afterwards back to our car.
On the way home we had to stop every 90 minutes or so as the exhaust was actually venting into the cabin and we were getting carbon monoxide - would start to develop a headache and pull over rest for 45 min or so then repeat. the passenger would watch the driver to make sure he was okay. In the end it turned out well but that was an adventure for my youth - most assuredly couldn't do that today. I have a scrapbook of the adventure as I had got my first digital camera and captured everything from the traffic jam to the accident to the march to the show - everything is chronicled - an amazing time and very cool album IMHO.