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Meatstick

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Meatstick

"Meatstick" is a song by the improvisational rock band Phish. It was never released on an album. The song has been played only 42 times, last performed 10/22/2013.[1] It debuted on the 1997 tour of Europe, specifically on June 25 at L'Aeronef, Euralille.

The title came about after an incident behind the scenes at one of the shows of that tour. The band and crew were raiding for food in an icebox that only contained sausage-like items, causing problems for the vegetarian bassist. The verses of the song seem to concern the joint experience and attempted communications between at least two individuals who have embarked on a psychedelic journey together.

The Dance

The Meatstick dance was first introduced on July 3, 1999 at Lakewood Amphitheatre, in Atlanta, GA by Trey Anastasio, and then reprised on the 4th of July, with thirty crew members doing the dance.

World Record Challenge

Phish set out to break the Guinness Book record for the most number of people dancing exactly the same to a song. The Macarena had held that record. During Phish's 1999 Summer Tour, the band introduced the song and dance to the audience, prepping them for the official record challenge at the upcoming summer festival. At Camp Oswego, the festival held in Volney, NY, Guinness Book officials were present to capture the event on video and evaluate whether the band had succeeded. However, the audience did not complete the dance. The hand movements were correct, but when Phish did the jump to switch sides in an effort to come full circle, the audience continued to face front. There were thousands of people involved, but the record was not broken

Hot Dog Vehicle

On a few occasions, this song has been accompanied by the band riding and sometimes playing from a large, moving, Hot Dog vehicle. The Hot Dog is sometimes suspended on cables above the crowd. The Hot Dog was donated to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, where it has been housed in the lobby until it's surprise re-appearance during the band's show on 2010/12/31.

New Year's Eve 1994-1995, Boston Garden, Boston, MA

New Year's Eve 1994 marks the first appearance of the Hot Dog. Before the lights went out for the third set, the audience “overheard” the band. Fishman wound up saying “I want a jumbo hot dog, large fries and shake” delivered on stage. The band came out, started up My Sweet One, and was interrupted by an announcer asking who ordered the food. The band pointed at Fishman, who looked confused as huge props of a hot dog, fries and shakes descended from the ceiling next to the drum set. The band played 2001 while the hot dog landed. The James Bond Theme was then broadcast over the PA while technicians (wearing “Rocket Scientist” jackets) prepared the hot dog, and the band climbed in with their instruments and flew out over the audience, as balloons popped and feathers, confetti and “Phish NYE 1994” ping pong balls fell from the ceiling. Various music, including the Captain Beefheart song Tropical Hot Dog Night, was played over the P.A. as the hot dog space ship flew back and forth.

New Year's Eve 1999-2000, Big Cypress Seminole Indian Reservation, FL -

At the two-day Big Cypress Festival, held in the Florida Everglades, the band was brought to the stage for the final of five sets, by fan-boat. While approaching the stage, the fan-boat broke apart to reveal the same giant hot dog that had been used in the New Year's Eve 1994 gag. A prerecorded version of The Meatstick was played until the band reached the stage and started playing along. The band then played a non-stop seven and a half hour set from midnight New Year's Eve to sunrise New Year's Day. The band wrapped up the set by continuing and finishing The Meatstick.

New Year's Eve 2010-2011, Madison Square Garden, NYC, NY -

On December 31, 2010, Phish played The Meatstick with a cast of characters representing different ethnic backgrounds singing and dancing to the song. Phish teamed up with David Gallo in New York City to create this event. At one point, the dancers escort the band off stage for the band to return from the rear of Madison Square Garden on the Hot Dog. Suspended over the crowd, the band members threw out commemorative foam hot dogs and rode to the stage to finish the song alongside the dancers. Meanwhile, red hot dog-shaped balloons fell from the ceiling of Madison Square Garden and filled the floor section. The length of the stunt was nearly 20 minutes. The clock struck 12:00AM on 1/1/11 as the song came to a close and the arena sang Aulde Lang Syne where thousands of balloons and a large amount of streamers were filling the arena. The Meatstick was followed with "After Midnight".[2]

Other Significant Meatstick Events

1999/07/18, Camp Oswego, Volney, NY

1999/07/23, Polaris Amphitheater, Columbus, OH

2012/08/31, Dick's, Commerce City, CO -

Notes

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