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WSP freebie for best hard luck story


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Since Detroit is too far to travel this weekend I wont be seeing TOO, and I cant afford overnight accomodations in Toronto so I gonna be missing Nero Saturday night as well [Frown] Lets hear some stories about shows you have had to miss.

I happen to have an extra copy of Widespread Panic 3/28/97 that I will send to the person who posts the most disappointing experience that caused them to miss a show they were really looking forward to.

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This is more "missed opportunity" than "hard luck", but I'll enter it anyway...

I went to the JavaOne conference in San Francisco in June, 2000. Coincidentally, Phish was doing a mini-tour of Japan around that time, and, luckily, my brother lives in Japan.

I had it all figured out: duck out of the conference a day early, I had a SF <-> Tokyo (direct flight both ways) return ticket set up for CDN $1000, and my brother was ready to jump on the phone to get the tickets. I'd also been meaning to get over to see him for a few years, so it was gonna be amazing to a) see Phish B) in small venues c) in Japan d) with my brother e) as tour guide and interpreter. This would also be a good chance to get him into Phish.

But then the tickets sold out so fast (and there were so few for non-Japanese people) that I couldn't get any, and all my luck-infused planning was for naught.



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This isn't a hard luck story about missing a show, and it is 12 years old, but still worth telling I think.

When I was about 16 or so I was really into late eighties early nineties metal bands. You know, GnR, Poison, Racer X...

Anyway, My step sister was married to a guy named Rob Atherfold who is a cousin of Billy Sheehan who is a fairly well known bass player in that genre - quite good too.

Billy's mother died and the funeral was in Ottawa. He brought a friend of his for support I guess. Paul Gilbert, who is also fairly well known in that genre - a guitar player. (I believe at the time they were both in the band Mr. Big. I like to make fun of this band, and bands like them now, but at the time I was really into them - sorry).

After the funeral they were looking for something to do, and my brother in law, who was at the funeral asked if they wanted to go jam with a band that was practicing near by (he was talking about my band). They said sure.

Rob (my brother in law) called my sister at home (not his wife, my other sister) and asked her if my band was practicing that day or not. Not wanting to interupt her tv show to check, she said no.

Instead of coming to jam with us they went to Tim Horton's.

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The Black Crowes

The Odeon


Cleveland, OH

We left Waterloo at 12...... That should have put us in Cleveland by 4 at the latest. As we pulled out onto the 401 heading to Detroit we blew past London and then got stuck in one mother of a traffic jam due to highway construction. That cost us at least an hour.....

As we approach the bridge to the USA, the car starts to make funny noises. We barely make it through customs, only to have the car die at the first exit in Detroit (not the best place for a few naive hippies to be have car trouble).

After it sits for a half hour, the car decides to move again- but refuses anything past third gear. Determined to make it to the show, we push on- doing 30 miles an hour on the shoulder. This should tell you how much we wanted to be at the show.....

Around 20 miles out of Detroit, the car dies again. In my frustration I reached out and punched the inside of the windshield, only to BREAK the freaking thing. Add $200 to this pathetic trip......

Well after a wrong turn, and a bad engine- we make it to Cleveland. And its only 8:30!!! As we try to find our way to the venue a nice couple beside us at the intersection, take our asking for directions as a beckon to follow them, and pull out in front of us and lead us on the ultimate Jedi Traffic Trick and get us through downtown in 5 minutes.

As we pull up to the parking lot beside the venue we were all pumped, that we had survived this day and were going to see the show. We hopped out of the car to a round of high fives, paid the lot attendant....... And then a couple walking by says, "Are you going to see the Crowes?", "Hell Yeah" is pretty much the response...... And then:

"Sorry guys, they just started their encore. They had to go on at 7:30 because this bar has a dance night after their concerts."

Wind leaves sails, we find our other group just leaving the venue to calls of "wicked show", "great night!" etc.

As we proceed to accept that we missed it, and tell our friends the story of our day- a Crowes fan leans in and hands me a US $20 to buy us some drinks because even he felt bad. Then I run into the Crowes manager, and he is pissed real fans missed the show for a dance night in Cleveland- he tells me to "wait here a second". Climbs onto the bus...... And emerges with the fucking Black Crowes. All of em, with setlists, drumsticks, Sharpies and guitar picks in hand. It kind of made the drive home a little more bearable.

So it was around a 22 hour trip, to have a few shots of bad American whiskey, break a windshield, meet a band, get autographs and MISS THE SHOW!?!?#?$?!

Hows that for a tour story from hell?


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3 interesting stories, Hard to choose a winner.

However, Northern Wish-you did get to meet the band, and Phred-look at it this way-you laugh at bands like Mr Big nowadays, how humiliating it would be to say you actually played with them [Roll Eyes]

So I guess BradM wins the prize as most disappointing missed concert experience. Opportunities like that dont happen everyday.

Thanks for sharing your stories.

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Well, even though the winner has been announced, I'll share my hard luck story. Phish summer tour 98, I was doing Walnut Creek through to the Lemonwheel. All was well until the journey from Pittsburg to Vernon Downs. About an hour west of Syracuse the timing belts on my Subaru went.

I ended up being towed to the nearest town (weedsport-the name is more interesting than the town). Now, I understand that Subaru is an import, but isn't Syracuse a city? It took 3 days to get my timing belts replaced. The Hotel in weedsport charged the equivelent of $100 CDN per night. I spent one night sleeping in the dugout of a local baseball field. The local cop cornered me, asking me why I have been walking around his town for the last couple of days.

Needless to say, I missed the Vernon Downs show (but some guy got an unexpected miracle when I handed him my Vernon ticket at the weedsport service station). In fact, I spent the next 24 hours driving back to Ottawa, picking up my friends, and then heading straight to the LemonWheel. After not having received any rest for the last 4 days (sleeping in my car, in a dugout, or not sleeping at all).

I get to Lemonwheel around 8 am Sat morning. We set up camp, walk about, waiting for the afternoon set. After the first set, I head back to camp to take a nap, which turned into a good night's sleep. Missed the 2nd and 3rd set of the first day.

So, the way I figure it, the lack of Subaru timing belts in Syracuse caused me to miss 4 sets of Phish :^)

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