Harry Hood (song)

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"Harry Hood"
Song by Phish
GenreProgressive rock, neo-psychedelia
WriterAnastasio/Fishman/Gordon/Long/McConnell
 
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"Harry Hood"
Song by Phish
GenreProgressive rock, neo-psychedelia
WriterAnastasio/Fishman/Gordon/Long/McConnell

"Harry Hood" is a song that is commonly performed live by the American band Phish, although it has yet to appear on a studio album. It is one of Phish's most frequently performed songs, featured in 306 live performances since its debut on October 30, 1985.[1][2]

Background[edit]

"Harry Hood" refers to the Hood Dairy Co., a New England dairy company based in Boston. While the band was living with Brian Long in Burlington, Vermont next to a Hood milk plant, "Harry Hood" was the company mascot of the Hood Milk Co., and this character was featured in a 1970s television commercial in which people opened their refrigerator to find Harry Hood standing inside. The lyric, "Where do you go when the lights go out?" most likely refers to this advertisement, and to the automatic light in a refrigerator. A "Mr. Minor" is also mentioned in the song, a reference to a previous tenant of the house. While living in Mr. Minor's former apartment, calls for Mr. Minor by debt collectors and such would frequently interrupt band rehearsals. For that, the band added the line "Thank You, Mr. Minor."

The music for the song was written during Trey Anastasio and Jon Fishman's 1985 travels in Europe. While on Pelekas Beach in Greece, they took LSD and decided to swim out to a raft just offshore. A violent storm came in and almost drowned Anastasio. After the near-death experience, Trey sat on the beach and wrote the music to "Harry Hood".[3]

Structure[edit]

The song opens with a reggae section prominently featuring the bass, then moves through several contrasting themes before culminating in an improvised section that begins with a I-V-IV chord progression.

"Glowstick wars"[edit]

"Harry Hood" is infamous among the band's fans for its association with the spontaneous emergence of "glowstick wars," a Phish-created audience and band interaction in which multicolored glowsticks were tossed from all points in the crowd, such as during the 1997 "Great Went" performance featured in the film Bittersweet Motel.

"Harry Hood" was performed at Phish's supposed "farewell" Coventry two-day gig in 2004 on the rocks in the front of the stage. The rocks were placed in an effort to help control the massive flooding that turned the Coventry event into a muddy mess. Guitarist Trey Anastasio noted that the band was much further away, and so they performed closer to the fans in order to start a conversation among fans who would presumably return to their campsites and discuss whether or not the proximity of the band to the stage affected the "flowage of the notes."

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Harry Hood History". 
  2. ^ "Personal Stats". 
  3. ^ Puterbaugh, Parke. "Phish: The Biography". De Capo Press, 2009, p. 48.