Phish Fans Crowd Jones Beach For Two-Night Run

Legendary jam band performed for a sold out crowd at Wantagh venue Tuesday and Wednesday.

A sea of tie-dyed fans filled the as jam band legends Phish took on a two-night stint celebrating the Fourth of July.

The Vermont-based foursome opened up the first night with a treat for real "phanners", busting out "Skin it Back", a classic that's been hiding in the vaults since 1988. Tuesday's setlist also included a cover of the Beatles' hit "Happiness is a Warm Gun" and fan favorites like "Chalkdust Torture", "Fluffhead" and "Weekapaug Groove".

Wednesday's holiday show took on a whole new set, equipped with a slightly altered version of Prince's "Purple Rain", Stevie Wonder's "Boogie on Reggae Woman" and a "Tweezer Reprise" encore.

Wednesday night marked East Meadow resident Rick Ruggiero's 79th Phish experience.

"Phish brings me to a place musically that nobody else could ever reach," said Ruggiero, 27. "Every night is a different show, a different setlist, a new experience. It brings you to this low place, and then this really high place, that you could never feel otherwise."

"The first song I ever heard was 'Gumbo' and I fell in love," he added. "I'm 79 shows deep and I'll be at my 80th this Saturday in Saratoga."

Jared, a Bellmore resident, is a bit less familiar with the Phish scene, but says the music and atmosphere surrounding the shows keeps him coming back.

"Tonight is my sixth time seeing Phish," Jared said. "My buddy dragged me to my first show and said it was something I shouldn't miss."

Phish's three-night run in Saratoga starts Friday and will be the final shows until the band picks up in Long Beach, California Aug. 15.


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