Hampton Comes Alive

What is everyone’s opinions on why the band chose to release this among all the greatness that was fall '98?

  1. Fun show. The band was clearly having fun on both nights. The energy level, even though I was not there and I’m clearly speculating, was probably ridiculously high b/c it’s Hampton!
  2. Wacky covers. Will Smith. Bob Dylan. Chumbawumba. The Beatles. Gary Glitter (GREAT opening choice, by the way). Ween. Stevie Wonder. Jimi Hendrix. Beastie Boys. My god!!! What an eclectic group of artists to cover during a 2 night stand.
  3. Tight playing. Can you name a badly played version of a song? “Possum,” “Gin,” “Piper,” “Hood,” “Divided Sky,” “Boogie On->NICU” (great segue!!), and the entire set II of night 2 are very, very well played. Gorgeous, melodic, dreamy playing out of “Simple.”
  4. Why not? It didn’t include any ‘best versions’ or crazy improv jams, but it was well-played and fun. I say certainly not the worst choice for a live release.

I think that it was a pretty solid choice. It was dependable like an old shoe, nothing to flashy except for the crazy ass covers.

I think I mentioned this before… But I think they planned on this album release BEFORE they even performed it… This may just be hearsay however.

^if that’s the case, which I can’t really say I believe, then that explains the song selection

I can’t see Phish saying “well, guys, we’re playing in a few weeks at Hampton…let’s release it when it’s all said and done.” That sounds like too much pressure to put on yourself, even though I do realize that Phish isn’t one to care about outside circumstances and wing it…but still, to say you plan on realeasing something before you play is a big decision. Who knows, though… IMO there’s no way they pre-decided to release it

they could have said “lets release a show or two from this upcoming tour” but thats as far as i think they would go.


When folks diss on it, I wonder why. It’s really a fun document of a fun stand.

No doubt about it, bro.
The only “complaint” that I would be able to muster would be lack of serious improvisational jamming (the “Gin” IMO is pretty solid, but average when comparing to other “Gin” jams). “Melt” is typical raging rock, and the “Mike’s Groove” is I think better than your average “Groove” One of the better "Simple"s I’ve ever heard!!! Basically, disc 6 is by far the best disc in that set. Fun covers about, too!

that was their original plan with round room… they were going to play it in its entirety on the new years run, hand out the cd covers at the show, and release it shortly after. and if i remember correctly… they like their sessions in the studio so much though that they just decided to release them instead. (read it in some trey interview at the time)

^ That’s what I read, too…

i agree, all i ever hear about this release is how poor it is, but i really dig it.
usually if im trying to get someone into phish, ill hand them disc 1 and/or disc 6

I just wish they’d lower the cost of Hampton. Whenever I see it in stores, I want to buy it, but I just can’t justify that amount of money for 2 average shows.

what’s the going rate these days? I think I paid about $60-70 in fall '99 for it.

How can the price still be the same? Wouldn’t it have decreased in the past 6 years??? Hmmmm.


I bought “Bitches Brew” off of eBay, I think, for about $30. That was 3 years ago. Great investment!!

no i figured you were talking about HCA.
its all good.

it was $30 including shipping. I was in college in a small town and the nearest store that would have had it would have been 30 minutes away. i said “fuck it, i’ll ebay this shit.”

I think Hampton is, at this point, one of those albums I’ll buy if I find it used and cheap, but I’m happy with free audience recordings for now.

that’s probably a good way of putting it.

I’m that way, for some reason, with one of the LivePhish recordings…I can’t mention it b/c I will get rotten tomatoes thrown at me again

You don’t have 11/17 ?

Throws tomato

Of course I have 11/17!!

skillfully dodges tomato