PHISH PHENOMENON : : OCTOBER 27

Hour-long special explores the band's unique approach to music and its audience; drummer Jon Fishman shares perspective on the band's final moments.


Trey Anastasio :: 8.15.04 Coventry, VT
By David Vann
Colchester -Twenty-one years ago, the jam band Phish started playing together at college parties and to small audiences around Burlington. By the time the band called it quits this past summer, Phish had become one of the top touring concert acts in the world. Yet the band's approach to its music and its audience was unique. Vermont Public Radio examines what made Phish different -from its musical invention to its festivals to its fans- with a one-hour documentary airing 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, October 27.

The program features an extensive conversation with Phish drummer Jon Fishman, plus people who worked with the band and fans. Listeners not familiar with Phish will gain a better understanding of the depth and reach of Phish's fan base, while Phish fans will gain new perspective into the group.

Phish's success was not the logical outcome of an aggressive marketing strategy. The Phish phenomenon came about because of the band's commitment to creating a dialogue with their fans and creating a unique community. VPR reporter Steve Zind and field producer Patti Daniels saw this first hand when they covered Phish's last concert in Coventry, providing reports throughout four rain-soaked days. The sound and interviews they gathered will be featured in the program, capturing the essence of a Phish festival. The program also delves deeper, exploring the role the internet played in the band's success, as well as the influence of living in Vermont. In an interview that is at times humorous and emotional, Phish drummer Jon Fishman recollects the meeting at which the band decided to call it quits, talks about the band's business philosophy and shares the band's final moments together following the Coventry festival.

VPR's Phish documentary is hosted by Steve Zind. Zind and Patti Daniels co-wrote and co-produced the program; Chris Albertine served as technical director and production engineer. John Van Hoesen is the executive producer.

Vermont Public Radio is Vermont's only state-wide source for NPR News, classical music, jazz and award-winning local news programming. VPR can be heard at 107.9 FM in Burlington, 89.5 FM in Windsor, 88.7 FM in Rutland, 88.5 FM in St. Johnsbury, 94.3 FM in Bennington. VPR also provides VPR Classical, a 24 hour classical music service heard in the Connecticut River Valley at 88.1 FM. Both VPR and VPR Classical can also be heard online at vpr.net.

Read JamBase's PHAREWELL MY PHRIEND Phish Phinal review of Coventry.

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[Published on: 10/13/04]

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