Tag Archives: Maryland

Widespread Panic Pier Six Pavilion April 26th 2015

wsp_spring2015_tourSpring tour was announced many months ago so I have had lots of time to prepare for Widespread Panic coming to the region for a good week of shows.  I didn’t pre purchase any tickets because I was not 100% on my schedule or if I could find anyone that wanted to go with me.  As the shows go closer I could see that work and school would take up my time not allowing me to see a show during the week.

The last show in this area was at Pier Six in Baltimore.  From my new house it is about 1:30 hours, a huge time saving compared to living in Stafford.  The one good thing about the Sunday night show was that traffic is not yet that bad.  Once summer hits, 95 will be a mess on the weekends and everyone is either heading to or from the beach by car.  This allowed me to take a nap and get well rested for the show to come.

wsp_pier_six_pavilion-2015For a late April show the weather was very chilli.  Everyone was wearing jackets and preparing for the mid-50’s that it would get down to.  Being on the water lowers the temperature that much more.  Another weird thing about the water was the number of boats I saw in the harbor.  In fact people where sitting on each flanking pier to watch and hear the show.

The show itself was a good one.  One of the other fans had a t-shirt that said “Never Miss a Sunday Show” and let me tell you that was some sound advice.  There was one slow spot in the first set and around the drums of set 2 was weird.  But all in a all worthy performance by the guys with Duane Trucks still sitting in on drums.

One of the highlights from this show was all the covers.  They have certainly been played before but I thought the selection and shear number played made this show spectacular.  Standouts included Pusherman and the show stopping Ballad of John and Yoko.  A few years ago when I saw them at the Fillmore in Silver Spring, they played this the second night of the run.  I could only see one show and I picked the night before.  I kinda thought I got some vindication when they played that the other night.It was a great performance and I am glad I went.  The show ended just before 11pm but I didn’t manage to make it home till 1am.  250th show by my count as well so that makes it a little more memorable.  See you all on the road.

Set 1 starts at 7:41pm
01. Holden Oversoul
02. Give
03. Tickle the Truth
04. Rock
05. The Poorhouse of Positive Thinking
06. Happy
07. Airplane
08. Rebirtha
09. Blackout Blues
set over at 8:46pm

Set 2 start at 9:17pm
01. Worry
02. Mercy >
03. Jam >
04. Big Wooly Mammoth
05. Chainsaw City (Little Women cover)
06. Blight (brute. cover) >
07. jam >
08. drums >
09. Pusherman (Curtis Mayfield cover)
10. May Your Glass Be Filled
11. No Sugar Tonight/New Mother Nature (The Guess Who cover)
walk off stage at 10:38pm

Encore starts at 10:41pm
12. Dream Song
13. The Ballad of John and Yoko (The Beatles cover)
house lights at 10:54pm

Phish Merriweather Post Pavilion July 27th 2014

Phish Merriweather 2014 poster
Phish Merriweather 2014 poster

Waking up in the same city as that nights show felt great, I had all day to kill.  Generally I like to hike on days like this but today I decided to relax first at the hotel with coffee and the Post.  Then around lunch I headed to a restaurant Nancy and I found while seeing The Killers the year before, the Frisco Taphouse.  I spent all afternoon here eating and more importantly drinking beer.  Like always when sampling new beers, it was not all good but I certainly had a great time doing it.

Today I arrived early to the venue and was able to score a spot in the lot near the entrance.  I forgot my lawn chair so instead I just sat in the trunk of my car.  I smoke a cigar and people watched.  There was this constant stream of cars coming into the venue and going in the opposite direction were people headed to shakedown street.  The cast of characters is wide and varied at a Phish show which is something I love about them.

Photo by Dave Vann © Phish 2014
Photo by Dave Vann © Phish 2014

After the previous night I had even higher hopes for tonight’s show.  Again it was being broadcast to the interwebs and it was a Merriweather show, come on guys rock this show.  Fee started the show and it was a weird version.  Trey used the megaphone but the song was played differently, the order was all wrong and it appeared to end abruptly yet Trey said it was all there.  The rest of the set was really good as well.  A good mix of songs and all played very well.  I love hearing Fuego being jammed out and ending the set with YEM was a killer choice.

Second set got off to an average start with Wilson.  The sun had set and the stage lights came up, the crowd was excited, throw in a good crowd interactive song and they ate it up.  Wilson segued into Tweezer and for the rest of the night the set revolved around Tweezer.  I have seen this done once before with Saw It Again at Merriweather in fact.  Almost every other song segued into Tweezer and then into another song before going back to Tweezer.  When Phish does this I love the playfulness from the band.

© Derek Gregory 2014
© Derek Gregory 2014

People ask me all the time if I get bored going to so many shows, aren’t they all just the same they ask.  I happen to completely disagree to both statements.  When they do things like this it just makes me love seeing the band in person. You often get special one of a kind shows that make it all worth while. All the teases during their normal songs were great, you never knew if they would find just one more sample before the show ended.

Most of the second set felt like it was the final song of the set and couldn’t get any better. Then all of a sudden they would squeeze another song in. At one point they played Jennifer Dance for the first time just short of 15 years since the last time. This continued till they finally walked off after Page’s I’ve Been Around.

This show quickly became a memorable show and near the top of my favorites list. This is why I still see them after all these many years. Musically they might not always play perfectly, but they will pull out some really great shows now and again. Besides a little drizzly rain and the second set, I won’t forget this show for a long while. Reason I keep coming back to this venue every time to see Phish perform.

after show fireworks in the lot
after show fireworks in the lot

Set 1 7:35pm
01. Fee
02. The Curtain With
03. 46 Days
04. 555
05. My Sweet One
06. Sand
07. Bouncing Around the Room
08. Saw It Again >
09. Fuego
10. You Enjoy Myself[1]
set over at 8:56pm

Set 2 9:25pm
01. Wilson >
02. Tweezer >
03. Back on the Train >
04. Tweezer >
05. Back on the Train >
06. Tweezer >
07. Waiting All Night >
08. Free >
09. Tweezer >
10. Simple >
11. Tweezer >
12. Free >
13. Catapult >
14. Slave to the Traffic Light >
15. Down with Disease[2] >
16. NICU >
17. Hold Your Head Up >
18. Jennifer Dances[3] >
19. Hold Your Head Up
20. I Been Around
set over at 10:43pm

Encore 10:45pm
21. Boogie On Reggae Woman >
22. Tweezer Reprise
show over at 10:55pm

Notes:
[1] With Trey waving his megaphone and using its siren.
[2] Unfinished.
[3] Fishman on vocals.

This show was webcast via LivePhish. YEM included Flash Light teases and featured Trey waving his megaphone and using its siren. The first Tweezer contained Back on the Train teasing from Fish. The third Tweezer included Page teasing Manteca. Simple included a Magilla tease from Page. Catapult was played for the first time since August 14, 2009 (206 shows). DWD was unfinished. NICU contained Under Pressure teases. Tweezer was teased after the first HYHU and in I Been Around. Jennifer Dances was performed at Trey’s request for the first time since December 17, 1999 (352 shows), featured Fishman attempting to sing the song but not knowing the lyrics, and was quoted at the end of the second HYHU. I Been Around was last played October 16, 2010 (149 shows) and while the band was walking off the stage in synchronized steps.

Phish Merriweather Post Pavilion July 26th 2014

Phish Merriweather 2014 poster
Phish Merriweather 2014 poster

Having woken up in Charlotte, I had a long drive ahead of me to get to Columbia.  I had to drive all the way back to my house and then continue another 1.5 to 2 hours further to get to Merriweather.  I was not to concerned about the 8 hour drive, what worried me was the summer traffic around DC on a Saturday.  It can take a one hour drive and quickly turn it into three.

I decided to leave rather early and take mostly back roads to get to Columbia.  I choose a route that took me north to Greensboro, through Danville and then out towards Richmond.  I took this route to get to Charlotte and found it to be a nice peaceful drive through the country.  Once I got around Richmond I detoured and headed out 301 and up through Maryland.  This allowed me to avoid all of 95 around northern Virginia and the beltway too.  While it was a little longer in terms of distance, I think I made better time than the more direct route.

Checking into the hotel first I didn’t have much time to make it to the venue.  If you arrive late parking can be a real bear.  There is not enough parking, especially for a sold out show like Saturday night was.  As I only had a lawn ticket I also wanted to arrive somewhat early to get a good spot.  Merriweather is know for how bad the lawn seats are, not only for sight line but acoustics as well.  This was unavoidable because of my travel time but in the end I wasn’t to bothered by it.  I was really just hoping it wouldn’t rain like the year before.

First set was a decent one.  I always have high expectations from a Merriweather show and at least it didn’t disappoint.  Both shows were broadcast and that was another reason to have high expectations from this show.  It was good but didn’t live up to the hype I was hoping for.  Opening night set one contained just one new songs and some good classics as well.  It also seemed to run longer than usual, clocking in at nearly 90 minutes.  Generally speaking the first set is always shorter than the second but tonight’s performance was split evenly between the two.

Second set started off on fire with Carini > Ghost which had a sick jam in it.  Ghost was a totally different version then ones I have heard in the past, the uniqueness of it made this song a good one.  The set flowed rather well from song to song with only a few abrupt changes in tone.  2001 > Harry Hood was a great way to end this better than average second set.  I always think of Merriweather and Harry Hood.  For me there is a special connection between the two so when I am able to hear this song here it gives me goose bumps.

On a whole just an average show I will confess.  What makes it special is the venue and the tour.  As the saying goes, the worst performance by Phish beats the best day of work anytime.

Set 1 (show starts at 7:35pm)
01. Sample in a Jar
02. The Moma Dance
03. Wombat
04. Backwards Down the Number Line
05. Roggae
06. The Wedge
07. Wolfman’s Brother
08. Nellie Kane
09. Lawn Boy
10. The Line
11. Stash
12. Suzy Greenberg
set over at 9:00pm

Set 2 (starts at 9:28pm)
01. Carini >
02. Ghost >
03. Steam >
04. The Mango Song >
05. Sing Monica >
06. Light >
07. 2001 >
08. Harry Hood
set over at 10:43pm

Encore (starts at 10:46pm)
09. Julius
house lights at 10:53pm

Phish Merriweather Post Pavilion July 13th 2013

Phish Merriweather 2013 poster
Phish Merriweather 2013 poster

Another summer tour with two stops at Merriweather again. This is becoming a traditional weekend run for the band as they have done this over the last few years. I had to miss last years run because of a family event in Wisconsin but I was looking forward to getting back in the groove this year. Because of work and other obligations, this was going to be my only shows of the summer run. Over the years I have become selective in what Phish shows I attend. I still get out and see shows, just not as many as I have in the past.

I started the afternoon off at my sister-in-laws house. Her family was having a family BBQ and it was on my way. It was a hot and humid day but it was suppose to get cooler and drop in humidity as a front move in. This had already caused some spots of rain but it looked to be clear in Columbia for the rest of the afternoon. There was a 40% chance of rain late in the afternoon but that was it.

Getting to Columbia didn’t take long but I had trouble getting into the venue as usually. The parking situation is always horrendous on sold out shows and it took almost an hour to get a spot and walk to the venue. I made one last check of the weather as I was prepared with a rain jacket but Columbia looked to be dry the rest of the evening. I walked in to find the lawn already pretty packed with an hour to go before the official start time. I had planned for this and brought two cigars with me, one for each set. Sitting there I noticed the clouds rolling in and things didn’t look good. It eventually started to drizzle but nothing serious. We were treated to a double rainbow which was cool.

taste the rainbow
taste the rainbow

Not long after the posted start time the show kicks off with Kill Devil Falls. A great upbeat song and then a bust out with Destiny Unbound. I have been fortunately enough to see this song twice before in the almost 50 shows I have seen of Phish (10/15/2010 and 2/28/2003). After this the set mellowed out in the energy which was unfortunate. The weather was slowly changing and I felt the band could have really played on that and made it a great set. They played several newer songs I suspect will be on their rumored new album to be released later this year.

As the set rolled on so did the clouds. It was a crazy scene as the sun set behind me illuminating these dark clouds rolling in over top the venue. They where thick and nasty, glowing from the light of the sun which were certainly bringing rain. In an instance, they heavens let loose with a downpour or rain. Unlike the rain before the set where it was just a light drizzle, this was a downpour. Some people scattered for cover, others dawned trash bags but the majority of us danced harder as the rain fell. The song choice during the rain could have been better but the crowd was excited as the band played on during the heavy rain. Almost as quickly as it started it was over just after the end of the set. I was soaked to the bone but fortunately my phone and Moleskine were safe.

smoke what you got
smoke what you got

At this point I couldn’t sit down to relax for a while and decided instead to do a little people watching. The rain soaked everyone and every thing and people started adjusting to being wet. The rain revitalized the crowds energy despite the down tempo song selection.

Second set as a whole was much better. DWD opened with a roaring success. Free had a good jam, Bouncing was to short in my opinion, and for me Birds of a Feather is a classic from Story of the Ghost I love to see live. They then played Harry Hood which at this venue brings back memories of my first show here back in 1998. Back then they turned all the stage lights off and the crowd went nuts with glow sticks. Now they barely turn them off and there are many more glow sticks. When the band busts into the start of the jam the crowd did manage to make one large push to get as many glow sticks into the air as possible. From my location down on the hill it was a rolling avalanche as the glowsticks made it down to the front of the lawn where I was. Later they played Mike’s so that meant a Weekapaug would be soon follow, the question what will be the in between song. Simple was the choose and a little weird one. The groove is an odd one to sandwich between the two heavy hitting songs, but they made it work.

The show ended with Waste > Good Times, Bad Times. I didn’t know it at the time but this was going to be my only show of the run. I had other obligations that prevented me from seeing Sundays show. At the time I thought the Good Times, Bad Times was a great way to end the set and show. The band loves playing this venue and that song shows it. The first set was a little off but the rain made it fun. For the second set they redeemed themselves for the most part with an better song selection and tighter jams. On the drive home I stripped down because I was tired of being wet. It felt good driving with the windows down, drying off after an excellent Phish show at Merriweather.

Set 1 (7:42pm start)
Kill Devil Falls
Destiny Unbound
Taste
Halfway to the Moon
Twenty Years Later
Maze
Yarmouth Road
Split Open and Melt
ends at 8:50pm

Set 2 (starts at 9:20pm)
Down with Disease >
Free >
Bouncing Around the Room
Birds of a Feather
Harry Hood >
Architect >
Mike’s Song >
Simple >
Weekapaug Groove
ends at 10:40pm

encore (starts at 10:42pm)
Waste >
Good Times Bad Times
show over at 10:54pm

Notes
Harry Hood featured Birds of a Feather and Divided Sky teases by Trey and a Dog Log tease by Mike.

The Killers Merriweather Post Pavilion August 10th 2013

The Killers
The Killers

 Photo Gallery

Nancy and I get a free night at Marriott when we renew our credit card, unfortunately it expired August 12. We tried last weekend to spend the night in Richmond but couldn’t use our free night. Good thing because the following weekend The Killers were playing at Merriweather and a Marriott is just down the road. We scored a couple pavilion tickets and booked our free night.

Saturday we headed up early to check out the Frisco Taphouse which was recommended to us. This place has over 40 beers on a rotating tap, all of which are craft and micro brews. Outside of the official Dogfish Head Alehouse, I have never seen so many of there their beers available on tap. I started with the seasonal Festina Peche from Dogfish and got a cask conditioned from a brewery I had never heard of. The cask conditioned was very botanical and while it was good, I wouldn’t get it again. We then checked into the hotel and took a cab to the venue. We started the afternoon off by pre-gaming and we’re going to continue what we started through the show.

killers_merriweather-aug_2013-01The weather turned out to be perfect for an August show. Rain fell the night before and a cold front pushed in putting the highs in the low 80’s with low humidity.  Weather wise it was a perfect night for a concert.  The opening act, The Virgins, did a pretty good job. Neither of us were familiar with their work and it wasn’t bad. We spent most of the time walking the venue, getting drinks and talking with fans. I was amazed how many people didn’t bring a lighter with them.

The Killers were supposed to start at 9 according to the cop that almost spit on me. If I did that I would have been arrested, he does it and it’s no big deal.  Point is the band was late. They didn’t get on stage till 9:12 and it was on after that. The played for almost two hours and it was a true rock and roll show. There were lasers, smoke, pyrotechnics. During the encore they even launched giant confetti canons that covered the first 30 rows. It was a wall of confetti, I have never seen anything like it before. Promptly at eleven the show ended and it was a killer show. Nancy even commented we need to see more concerts, to which I completely agreed.

Pyrotechnics!
Boom goes the pyrotechnics.

Heading home we grabbed a cab at the back of the venue. The guy wanted $20 buck which I knew was high and hoped I had. He never started the meter and as we headed back I realized I only had $17. I knew from the cab rid over it was a $12 fair and he wanted to charge more because it was after 9pm. I called bullshit on it so when he told me I shorted him I reminded him he never started the meter, this was an unregistered fair, and that it was a $12 ride cab with a $5 tip. He didn’t like it but he was going to have to live with it.

For me it was a great ending to a great but long day. The beer from Frisco Taphouse was excellent, The Kills rocked the house and the cabbie provided me some late night entertainment. On to the next concert.

start at 9:12pm
1. Mr. Brightside
2. Spaceman
3. ?
4. Smile Like You Mean It
5. This River Is Wild
6. Bling (Confession of a King)
7. Shadowplay
8. Miss Atomic Bomb
9. Human
10. ?
11. I Think We’re Alone Now*
12. For Reason Unknown
13. From Here on Out
14. A Dustland Fairytale
15. Read My Mind
16. ?
17. All  These Things That I Have Done
Ends at 10:41pm

Encore starts at 10:45
18. ?
19. Jenny was a Friend of Mine
20. When We Were Young
Show ends at 10:59pm

Notes:
* Tiffany cover

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