October 30, 2009
So you want to go to Festival 8, but you don't know your "Hoist" from
Here's an easy guide to becoming a Phish fan in just phive easy steps:
1. The look. Don't try to dress the part, because you're just going
to look fake and dumb. Trust me everyone is gonna pick on the dude
in the brand-new 420 shirt and Rastafarian hat.
Besides, the idea that all Phish fans are pot-smoking, hacky
sack-playing, dreadlocked hippies is an ugly rumor.
They don't all have dreadlocks.
2. Phish is entirely separate from The Grateful Dead. While the two
bands have some things in common, they are two different entities. Do
not confuse them.
3. The music. Of course listen to some Phish tunes. But don't drive
yourself crazy with total immersion. That's way too daunting. With a
band that's been playing together for more than 25 years, it would be
downright impossible to listen to every song, download, bootleg and video.
Instead select your ideal level of Phish knowledge:
Guppy Listen to Phish's most popular tunes, like "Heavy Things,"
"Sample in a Jar," "Bouncing Around the Room" and "Down With
Disease." This will give you a basic introduction to the band and their sound.
Trout Take a listen to these tunes that are loved by diehards but
also enjoyed by casual fans: "Farmhouse," "Stash," "Free" and "David Bowie."
Marlin You want to get down to business, which means it's time to
download some live shows. A good one to start with is June 11, 1994
at Red Rocks Amphitheater, which is available online or at your local
4. Want to start a conversation with the cute fan next to you? Just
say, "Man, Trey sure can shred ..." Then sit back and let the magic happen.
5. Have fun! Er ... make that phun. One of the best things about
Phish is the band's ability to let loose and have a good time. They
never take themselves too seriously, so why should you?