Phish To Reward Spurned Festival Fans
Fans turned away from Phish's career-capping Coventry festival in Vermont earlier this month will receive free digital downloads from the event, including the soundcheck, as well as a one-of-a-kind phFans turned away from Phish's career-capping Coventry festival in Vermont earlier this month will receive free digital downloads from the event, including the soundcheck, as well as a one-of-a-kind photo book autographed by the band.
Phish manager John Paluska announced the plan in a lengthy letter to fans on the band's official Web site. The photo book will be compiled by photographer Danny Clinch and will feature images spanning from 1994 to the present.
"These books are being created specifically for those of you who missed the Coventry shows and will never be sold or available in any other way," he writes. "It will take a number of weeks to get these books printed, signed and shipped, but we will get them to you as quickly as we can."
Paluska's letter outlines in detail the anguished decision to turn ticketholders away from the festival grounds, after heavy rains rendered large portions of the site unusable. Thousands of fans wound up leaving their vehicles on Interstate 91 and walking up to 25 miles to the concert.
"A frustration expressed in many of your e-mails is that those of you who followed instructions every step of the way ended up with the short end of the stick, while those who didn't heed our requests ended up getting in to see the show," Paluska says. "And that on top of that, the band expressed their appreciation to those of you who parked your cars on the road and walked in. I can completely understand how many of you who turned around (or never left your houses) are angry about this, and I'm deeply sorry that things went the way they did."
"In the end, after reviewing all the events of Coventry in my mind, I don't second guess any of the key decisions that were made," he continues. "We were dealt some extreme conditions by Mother Nature and we made the best of a very difficult situation. All of you were incredibly patient and considerate in the face of these trying circumstances. The locals are still talking about how courteous and friendly the fans were to them. People worked together. Our staff worked long hours on little sleep and under immense pressure, yet never wavered from the task at hand."
According to wire reports, removing trash from Interstate 91 and U.S. Route 5, the highways leading up to the concert site, will cost promoter Great Northeast Productions $35,000. Crews from the Vermont agency of transportation's districts in Derby and St. Johnsbury spent three days cleaning up the area.