Calling out Amazon’s owner Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest billionaire, one worker said, “It’s criminal that the richest corporation in the history of our planet is refusing to pay its workers more than $2 dollars per hour for hazard pay and is not providing its employees with adequate protective equipment. This is not enough! Amazon can afford it!” (tinyurl.com/rpjjjls/) Amazon owns Whole Foods.Lisa Wilson, who works as a cashier at Shaw’s in the working-class neighborhood of Hyde Park, shared using a bullhorn, “I feel scared. I feel like I’m going to get sick. I feel like it’s inevitable. But at the same time, not working is not an option. With my insurance, if I get sick, it’s going to be hard. The idea that I have to put my life on the line is crazy.”Demonstrations by grocery workers, fighting for their very lives, have begun to extract critical worker protections and compensation from the grocery bosses, including the right to employer-provided protective gear. A new statewide guideline in Massachusetts allows no more than 40 percent of maximum store occupancy and adds to earlier mandates for single-lane shopping and social distancing protocols in grocery stores at all times. Some grocers are also bending to demands for improved hazard pay, raising recent wage increases above the $2 an hour pittance that Amazon’s Whole Foods has insultingly offered.Over 40 grocery workers have died from COVID-19. The first in Massachusetts was Vitalina Williams, who died April 4 at 59. She worked two part-time cashier jobs: at Market Basket in Salem and Walmart in Lynn. Williams migrated to the U.S. in the 1990s from a poor Mayan community in Tecpán, Guatemala, to support her mother and nine siblings back home and to better her own life economically.Sadly, her brother noted, Vitalina’s tragic and preventable death “shows that there are two hugely unequal worlds.” Following her death, state elected officials applied pressure on Gov. Charlie Baker to declare grocery workers “emergency workers.”Williams is survived by her husband of 22 years, Dave Williams, who also worked at Market Basket. “She was not the love of my life. She was my life,” he said.Any gains won by grocery workers are gains for us all! A grassroots coalition of grocery workers from Whole Foods Markets, Stop & Shop, Trader Joe’s and Shaw’s supermarkets held a well-organized “social distancing” protest and press conference April 7 in front of Whole Foods in Boston’s gentrified South End. Their demands included “essential pay for essential work,” paid sick leave and family leave, time and a half hazard pay, and immediate, on-the-job protections, including face masks and gloves for all workers, stringent disinfectant protocols and social distancing guidelines.Boston grocery workers demonstrate outside Whole Foods, April 7.Credit: Maureen Skehan FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
There’s something gratifying about going through the Phish archives and pulling out some of the great shows from the band’s career. So many memorable moments came during the 1990’s, including this performance from May 27th, 1994 at The Warfield in San Francisco, CA.The band’s third night at the iconic SF spot was arguably the best of the run, featuring the debut of “Simple,” an acoustic set with Morgan Fichter on fiddle, and an audience macaroni and cheese box shaking for “Possum” and Jimi Hendrix’s “Fire.” No really, the band handed out Flintstones macaroni and cheese before the final two songs of the night and encouraged fans to shake along with them. “Shake your macaroni!,” yells drummer Jon Fishman.Of course, the song “Simple” also made its debut at this show, in its familiar setlist locale post-“Mike’s Song.” The interchange between “Mike’s” and “Simple” is downright insane, when you consider that this was the first time it had ever been played. The song was originally recorded in something of a doo-wop style for the Hoist album, but the Mike Gordon penned original didn’t make the cut. After this performance, it was significantly reworked and eventually debuted in a form closer to finalization, during the infamous O.J. Simpson police chase performance on June 17th of the same year.It’s interesting to hear how this song came to be, and we do indeed have it “Simple” for being Phish fans. Listen to the full May 27th, 1994 show below.[Audio: fromtheaquarium]Setlist: Phish | The Warfield | San Francisco, CA | 5/27/1994Set 1: Wilson > Runaway Jim, Foam, Bouncing Around the Room > David Bowie, If I Could, Punch You In the Eye > Harry Hood, Golgi ApparatusSet 2: Suzy Greenberg > Peaches en Regalia > My Friend, My Friend > Reba, The Lizards, Julius, Nellie Kane, My Mind’s Got a Mind of its Own, Mike’s Song -> Simple > Mike’s Song > Simple -> O Mio Babbino Caro, PossumEncore: Fire No whistling. Morgan Fichter on fiddle. Acoustic and without microphones. Debut. Phish debut; Andrea Baker singing unmiced. Audience shaking boxes of macaroni and cheese.Teases:· Theme from The Flintstones tease in Suzy Greenberg· Theme from The Flintstones tease in PossumNotes: This show marked the debut of Simple and the Phish debut of O Mio Babbino Caro. Suzy and Possum contained Flintstones theme teases. Reba did not have the whistling ending. Nellie Kane and My Mind’s Got a Mind of its Own were performed acoustic with guest fiddler Morgan Fichter. O Mio Babbino Caro, a Puccini aria, featured opera singer Andrea Baker singing unmiced. Before Possum, the band handed out boxes of Flintstones macaroni and cheese for the audience to shake along with Possum and Fire.
Peach Music Festival has been given a lot of difficult situations to navigate around, but somehow they keep coming through with news that impresses fans beyond their initial lineup. Drummer Mark Hill of The Floozies is unable to attend their set this evening, but will be replaced by The String Cheese Incident‘s own Jason Hann instead. The Floozies’ Facebook post reads: “Alright peach fest people. Mark can’t make it tonight because he’s becoming a father. So Jason Hann from The String Cheese Incident will be filling in on drums. So many effing feelings right now.” Congratulations, Mark!The announcement comes atop the exciting news that Joe Russo, Marco Benevento, and Oteil Burbridge will be performing a special set on Sunday, as will Rich Robinson Band and an extended set from Gov’t Mule. These week-of announcements are a result of the unfortunate situations surrounding Gregg Allman‘s health, which ultimately led him to cancel the rest of his tour, with multiple sets at Peach included. Get better, Gregg!