Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Today in Phishtory: 6/11/2000 Tokyo, Japan


This was my second Phish show in Japan. The boys played an afternoon concert in Hibiya Park.
Phish 6.11.00, Hibiya Outdoor Theatre, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan

Set I: First Tube, Punch You in the Eye, Horn, Ginseng Sullivan, Stash, Dirt, Possum, It's Ice, Farmhouse

Set II: Birds of a Feather, Free, Beauty of my Dreams, Bug, David Bowie, When the Circus Comes to Town, Back On The Train, Harry Hood

Encore: Character Zero
Download/listen link for 6/11/00 (courtesy of Phishows.com)

Here's five videos (playlist courtesy of silverchair97) from the Hibiya Park show including First Tube, Farmhouse, Bug, Back on the Train and Character Zero. There are bits of backstage interviews spliced in with the concert footage. Good stuff.


* * * * *

An American student living in Tokyo told me where I could score some hash in Shibuya. He pointed me to a street corner off a long alley. A couple of Iranians stood in front of a bakery. I went on a sketchy subway ride with one of them to a shrine where we did the deal in front of a statue of Buddha. My mission was to purchase enough for three people and make it last the rest of the trip. I scored a chunk the size of a golf ball which could get the entire city of Tokyo ripped to the tits for 36 straight hours.

I couldn't find any pot although the Iranians offered me coke, heroin, and some sort of speed. Lucky for us, we could walk into random head shops and buy mushrooms since they were legal at the time.

We had to get up early for a rare afternoon show at the outdoor theatre in Hibiyia Park which was Tokyo's version of Central Park. Big Frog, Japan's version of The Grateful Dead, opened up for Phish and Senor fell in love with Sato, the female lead singer. They played a Beatles cover song Drive My Car.

It was raining all afternoon even during Big Frog's set, but when Phish bean playing, the rain magically stopped. We had decent seats and we were all faded considering it was mid-afternoon. Senor flirted with a local girl named Matsumi who was sitting next to us. Matsumi asked us if we had wives. Every Japanese girl that I me asked me that question. Not if I had a girlfriend, but if I had a wife. I always laughed.

I split time hanging out with Senor and Beano and my new buddies from Horse. First set highlights included First Tune to open, a smooth PYITE, a rare Ice, and a mellow yet juicy Dirt. Second set highlights were Free and Bowie. Page was the man on Hood.

In between the completion of the second set and the encore, a rainbow magically appeared, which made the crowd go completely insane. I found out later on that it was rare to actually see a rainbow in Tokyo for some odd reason even though we were in the middle of the rainy season. That's why everyone went crazy. Phish didn't know what was going on at first because everyone in the crowd was pointing up to the sky. They figured out what was up and fed off the frenetic energy of the crowd. The result? The Zero encore rocked.

After the show, we hung out in the park for several hours, mingling with locals and Americans who made the journey overseas. We checked out food vendors in the park. I ate octopus eyeballs with Yuh and the guys from Horse. I met the lead guitar player from Big Frog and took a photo. By then it was dark. The clouds were gone and I sat down near a pond. I wrote a postcard by moonlight to my girlfriend at the time and told her that seeing Phish in Japan was probably the coolest thing I had ever done in my life.


Pauly with members of Horse