Hampton Openers: Chalkdust Torture

Chalkdust Torture seems to be one of the popular songs on my friends' potential list of Hampton openers. During Phish's Hampton run in 2003, the boys opened with Chalkdust (click here to see the video). They opened with it four more times in the post-hiatus or Phish 2.0 era.

Chalkdust is one of Trey's favorite Phish tunes and if you recall, it was one of the two songs Phish played for their Saturday Night Live appearance (along with 46 Days which was from their new album) which happened weeks before their reunion show at MSG.

Chalkdust is one of the most popular Phish songs (according to David "ZZYZX" Steinberg) and performed over 340 times. I had seen it so many times at the end of the 1990s that it began to loose its luster. But during Phish 2.0, I turned 30 and started to understand the significance of "Can I live while I'm young?" And now in my mid-thirties, I'm clinging onto those old halcyon glory days with every bit of strength in my body.

According to Hidden Track, only Runaway Jim opened a show more times than Chalkdust. They called it the "safe opener" which is an appropriate term. It's sort of like picking all four #1 seeds for your final four pool. I'm a betting man and I have at least one bet down that the boys kick off the festivities with Chalkdust.

But deep down? I don't think it will be Chalkdust, but I can definitely see that being a perfect Saturday night opener.

Here's one of my favorite versions circa 1994 on David Letterman...


the joker said…
im hoping 1 set will open with Tube and 1 set will open with Punch You in the Eye...

If the band asks me, I think they should open 3/6/9 with PYITE>Back on the Train
Phil said…
i agree with Mr. Miner...Opening with Mike's would blow the roof off. THose opening licks, Kuroda's masterwork. Shows that they are back and they mean business.

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