From Eric Sommer, screenprinter of some awesome shirts in the gallery below.
Ever since I was a little kid, all I ever wanted was to be a printer…
When I was twelve I used to routinely harass the local screen printer for an internship. Art and design have been my life since I was a child. When other kids went to summer camp, I went to art camp. When other kids played soccer, I drew in my sketch book. That explains why I print. My relationship with Phish is a little weirder than that.
Growing up in the 518 made it hard not to like this band. But I still tried. The White album happened in my own HOMETOWN, but I was 15 and a grunger and metal head. But I soon began to learn that the “boys” were going to change my world, whether I knew it or not.
Within a year, a girlfriend had convinced me to lighten up and try some music that didn’t have heavy distortion in it. One of the first bands she opened me up to was Phish. But as you know Phish is way more than you’ll hear in a recording. So how do you get a reclusive introverted artist out of the house and to surrender to the flow? It started in the summer of ’98, and even though a bunch of friends from the Adirondack Foothills went up to Maine for the Phestie up there, it was a group of tour wooks from North Carolina that stopped through on their way home and raged it at my apartment in Lake George that showed me my first sample of tour life. We must have had half the little hoodlums in that town trashed.
That started a thing with me. Anytime a head passed through, I had their back, but even then I still never jumped on the road. My first time wandering onto a Phish lot was in Albany ’98. I never actually got into a show until 04, at SPAC. Even though I had loved their music for 8 years, it practically had to get thrown in my lap to get me to go.
A lot of people get into the culture young and then move on, the older I get the more I get drawn in. My love grows a little more every time I see them. I never jumped on tour til Summer 2010. Even now, I’m still reaching a little further each time. I hope to see the west coast for the first time on tour. Life is crazy, and its these four guys that have really helped me come to terms with that. I know at this point, everything I do will somehow have some strange attachment to this band, they have practically lassoed me in. Its like I couldn’t escape if I tried. But who would want to?!