Twenty years ago, Phish played a New Year’s Eve show at Madison Square Garden that remains one of the canonical moments in their history. It’s an incredible night of music. (I urge you to check out the Mike’s Song > setbreak > Auld Lang Syne > Weekapaug Groove > Sea and Sand. A masterpiece in five movements. It can be found at 2:04:22 in this video.)
Anyway, I saw the band perform music in that very same round room last night. Goin’ back for seconds, thirds and fourths this week, too.
Many parts of my life have become strange and great lately (the two being almost always mutually inclusive). I think now of the part in the Magical Mystery Tour film early on where everyone is riding in the bus, and Lennon says, “Already the magic was beginning to work…”
Last night’s show was terrific. The second set was a real heater, featuring an incredible jam out of Bathtub Gin and a soul-affirming Weekapaug > What’s the Use? > Weekapaug to close it all out.
Here, listen, music is art stretched across a canvas of time. And when it hits — well, you know the rest. Just like in life, all you can do is ride the Great Wave.
“The act of transformation is the work. The music is its echo.”
– Walter Holland