2016 Summer Tour Preview: Phish

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Quiet since an extraordinary three night Mexican adventure back in January, Phish will return to the road to kick off their summer tour in less than three weeks. The shows in Rivera Maya marked the first time the boys have gone south of the Rio Grande to perform, and their first international shows since a lone 2013 show in Toronto. Prior to that, phans have to look all the way back to 2000 to find multiple shows outside of the United States.

Summer 2015 was a strong one for the band. The foursome debuted some new additions to their extensive catalog, including Blaze On and No Men in No Man’s Land, and they proved that the songs performed in Las Vegas during their 2014 Halloween run were here to stay (Martian Monster and The Dogs have quickly become phan favorites). Tour stops in Tuscaloosa, AL, Cayahoga Falls, OH, and a two-night stand at the Mann Music Center in Philly highlighted an energetic, fun, and jammy-as-hell string of 25 shows. Phish also hosted their tenth multi-day festival, Magnaball, at Watkins Glen International in New York. That event featured more highlights than can be documented here, but included a bust out of the rare “Mock Song,” a sick 23-minute “Bathtub Gin,” and of course the instantly legendary “Tweezerpants.”

For 2016, the band will again play 25 dates, including two nights at the Lockn’ Festival in Arrington, VA. The tour kicks off in St. Paul, MN, on June 22. Phish will play two special shows at Wrigley Field in Chicago on June 24-25 before heading to the Klipsch Music Center (aka Deer Creek) in Noblesville, IN on June 26. The boys then work their way east, and, as far as the map goes, south, to Philly for another 2-night run at the Mann Music Center. This marks the third consecutive year Phish will play two nights at the 14,000 seat Philly venue. Unfortunately for those southern phans, the Mann run is the furthest south Phish will travel this year (not counting the festival in Arrington, VA), spurning traditional stops in Maryland, North Carolina, and Georgia, among others.

The Northeast will get a heavy dose of Phish as a result, as the band heads north to Saratoga Springs, NY for a three night run at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC) from July 1-3. Following a couple of off days to celebrate the nation’s 240th birthday, they will play one show in Maine, at the Cross Insurance Arena in Portland on July 6.

A pair of Xfinity shows, albeit in two different states (July 8, Xfinity Center, Mansfield, MA; July 9, Xfinity Theater, Hartford, CT), are followed by one more New York show, this time in Syracuse at the Lakeview Amphitheater on July 10. That wraps up, for the most part, Phish’s east coast summer adventure, save for the Lockn’ performances at the end of August.

Phish will head west for the second leg of the tour, if you want to call it that, as they pick up on July 15 for two nights at the famed Gorge Amphitheater in George, WA. This venue, like Red Rocks, is as scenic as an outdoor venue can be.

phish gorgephish gorge 2

The last five non-festival dates are all in California, as the band plays three nights at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco from July 18-20. Phish will visit the Forum in Inglewood on July 22, and close the tour the next night at the Sleep Train Amphitheater in Chula Vista.

Making their first multi-band festival since a 2012 appearance at Bonnaroo, Phish will play two nights at the Lockn’ Festival in Arrington, VA. 2016 marks the fourth year of the festival, and features Ween (after a special request from Trey during the 2015 Cuyahoga Falls show??), Chris Robinson Brotherhood, Galactic, Moon Taxi, Gary Clark Jr., Tedeschi Trucks Band, and a variety of others. Phish will play Friday, August 26, and Sunday, August 28, with Ween headlining Thursday and My Morning Jacket headlining Saturday.

Phish will play their last scheduled 2016 dates at Dicks Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, CO, from September 2-4. The Labor Day residency has produced some magical-and phishy- moments over the five years they have played there. Basically, everyone loves Dicks! There’s a great time to be had at Dicks! Go get yourself some Dicks! This will by my first year with Dicks, so count me as excited about Dicks!

Can’t get out on the road, or they aren’t coming to your area? Phish still has you covered. Keep an eye out for information on the live webcasts from summer tour!


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