Phish is an American rock band noted for its musical improvisation, extended jams, exploration of music across genres, and adoring fan base. Formed at the University of Vermont in 1983 (with the current line up solidifying in 1985), the band’s four members – Trey Anastasio (guitars, lead vocals), Mike Gordon (bass, vocals), Jon Fishman (drums, percussion, vocals), and Page McConnell (keyboards, vocals) – performed together for over 20 years before breaking up in August 2004. They reunited March 2009 and have been touring ever since. Summer tour info here!
Its hidden far away
But someday I may tell
The tale of mental tangle when into your world I fell
Without you now I’d wander soaking, secretly afraid
But in your grasp the fears don’t last
Though some of them have stayed
I wheeled around because I
Didn’t hear what you had said
And saw you dancin’ with Elihu
Up on Leemor’s bed
And I was foggy rather groggy
You helped me to my car
The bindin’ belts enclosin’ me
A sample in a jar
The Clifford Ball was the first of nine weekend-long festivals hosted by Phish throughout their career. The event took place on August 16 and 17, 1996, on the site of a former Air Force base in Plattsburgh, NY, about one hour west from Phish’s home base of Burlington, Vermont. The event was named after Clifford Ball, a man who held events for aviators such as Amelia Earhart. The Clifford Ball was a proposed name for the 1990s traveling festival that ultimately was named H.O.R.D.E.
The event combined overhead flights by bombers, fighters, gliders, and various other aerial vehicles with carnival rides, jugglers, and men on stilts. Three gigantic video screens and four sound towers were erected to amplify the band. Phish, the only band at the event, was joined at the event by a classical violin quartet, a blues quartet, a choral quintet, and guitar soloists. 70,000 people attended, making the event Phish’s largest concert up to that point and the largest rock concert in the United States in that year. Phish released a seven DVD box set in March of 2009, chronicling the band’s seven sets and including bonus documentary footage.