I started talking with Dr. Yohe about the possibilities for Phish’s Halloween costume a couple days ago, when I found out he was in Atlantic City for the run (and for a fortuitously timed wedding Saturday night). His hope was for a Led Zeppelin album, but among the picks he mentioned was Little Feat’s Waiting for Columbus, a double-live record I picked up long enough ago that I was still buying actual records.
(A note: Phish has a long-standing tradition of donning a musical “costume” when it plays a Halloween show, meaning the band covers an entire record by someone else during the course of the night. I think the first was the Beatles White Album, and they’ve also done Talking Heads’ Remain in Light and, a year ago, the Stones’ Exile on Main Street, which is still my pick for the greatest rock ‘n’ roll album ever. In 1998, there was even a bonus — the speculation was rampant that Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon would be the choice; two nights after playing the Velvet Underground’s Loaded on Halloween night, they played Dark Side as a surprise in Salt Lake city.)
As we watched Saturday’s set list roll by, it became pretty obvious from the number of Zeppelin covers that a Zeppelin costume wouldn’t be the choice. Dr. Yohe was a little bummed about this, but as the band kicked off Waiting for Columbus on Sunday night, he seemed to come around.
I got to listen too, because of a quirk in my work schedule that had me in the office late because of the night Stiller game and a juicy audio stream, thanks to the folks at Hoodstream. So as Dr. Yohe’s tweets became more and more enthusiastic, I was listening along to the horns and Page’s excellent keyboard work.
There are other things I could have done to celebrate Halloween this year — I had my annual “ohgodiwishiwasinathens” pangs on Saturday morning — but this wasn’t bad at all. In fact, it was almost as good as listening to the opening notes of “Dixie Chicken” while rolling into Memphis for the first time.
And as he handed me a drink, he began to hum a song. And all the boys there, at the bar, began to sing along…
Happy Halloween, y’all…