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Published: 2014/04/23

Mike Gordon Talks Fashion in New Esquire Interview

Mike Gordon is a wizard on the bass, but these days he’s working up a reputation as something else entirely—a fashion icon. The bassist broke down his thoughts on clothing, “guyliner,” dressing up to party at Prince’s house and more in a new Style Profile with Esquire. You can check out some choice quotes from the profile below.

Mike Gordon, on the origin of his fashion-sense:

We did the Rolling Stone shoot where we were on the cover and they brought crazy stuff… Trey had no shirt and a skirt on, and this big black horn coming straight up from his head. We were kind of going with the flow, thinking, “Lets just be crazy.” But we never wanted to be zany, that’s kind of a bad word. To be unexpected is cool, and at a certain point we did a photo shoot where unexpected was to actually just dress up and look nice, and the stylist had brought a lot of Varvatos stuff, and we thought, “OK, well, this feels good.”

Trey and I got into Varvatos and said, “Let’s go get more stuff like this.” We’d have these shopping sprees with a stylist and other friends to help, to the point where we were wearing so much Varvatos that we were wearing the same stuff. So hence he’s wearing Rag & Bone and I’m doing G-Star, All Saints, whatever just to get away.

Mike Gordon, on hippie clothing:

I don’t think I was ever into the hippie thing. Maybe for one day.

I wonder if sometimes the audience is a few degrees different from the band? I mean, there’s a whole bunch of things that you might call “hippie” that we would never wear. Like no one in the band would ever wear tie-dye, or Birkenstocks, or… What’s the long list of stuff like that? There’s all kinds of things. Not even for a minute would any of us ever have worn that stuff.  

Mike Gordon, on his idea of a nightmare:

My single biggest anxiety dream that I have—and I’ve had it for decades—is I’m backstage trying to decide what to wear and the band’s already on stage, adding salt to the wound, and no one is playing the bass. I look at my wardrobe and I have one pink sneaker and one orange one, and some other really horrible stuff, and that’s all. I have to make these decisions between horrible choices. And it’s New Years Eve and they’re already playing “Auld Lang Syne” and I couldn’t possibly be more late for something, but I still can’t decide. I do it in real life to the point where I start to sweat and think I just have to figure this out earlier in the day… It could just be the choice between two simple T-shirts, but I freak out about it.

Mike Gordon, on the importance of liking your shirt:

I met someone in the Grateful Dead who was interested in my list of what makes a good gig, and the last thing on the list was “you have to like your shirt.”  And I wasn’t just kidding either, it’s really important. There’s so many times I’m onstage where I’m on this musical adventure and adventure of consciousness, and having this peak experience, and liking the shirt, or pants, is really part of that.

You can check out the full interview, in which Gordon also discusses artists whose style he admires, the powers of Jon Fishman’s dress, Mike Gordon bobbleheads and more, here.


There are 21 comments associated with this post

Dave the Slave April 23, 2014, 17:14:43

Wow. Really. This is too easy. What Mike should do is turn on the drill and stick it in his eye. Now that would be entertaining.

HE SHOULD WEAR A BURKAH April 23, 2014, 16:55:12

He should wear a burkah!!!

Mouthwhore April 23, 2014, 16:59:34

I literally just blasted one out all over my face while reading that. Mike give me a scarf, actually two. One for a wipe down the other so I can choke myself and stroke the possum again.

derpa April 23, 2014, 18:03:58

April Fools! No? Well, shit

SlaveDriver April 23, 2014, 18:14:02

Dear Mike, Not the worst dreams you could have. Yet, when it comes to yanking tunics you should be comfortable while getting down with disease. We can’t all keep it Simple like Fish. That being said, we can’t all be Page. Advice? Thriller Jacket.

John Horsecock April 23, 2014, 18:36:12

My god that stinks of a copy pasta but it’s his actual interview. That makes me as excited to see them as I am to see a school yard of children overrun by child predators in wheel chairs.

DJ Damage April 23, 2014, 18:48:10

What, no ankle bracelet? My question is, will he be the staph photographer for Teen Beat? This guy is a hoot, just begging us to hit the softballs he is throwing us right out of the park, no? I’ll say this, if he comes anywhere near my 11 year old daughter, Phish will have to hold auditions for a new bass player. DJ abiding still AND OUT!

gizza April 23, 2014, 22:12:40

whats woarse than a young bisco kid and old phish head. you all are player haters

Sick of it April 23, 2014, 22:32:39

I used to get the Schvice and enjoy Mike or Jon’s quirky stuff, but it’s like these guys can’t do anything creative and cool whatsoever anymore. Train wrecks on the stage, skimpy half sold tours and delayed albums. As they say no publicity is bad publicity, but this is a rare exception. Why again is this dude putting out stuff like this with his past rumored artistic endeavors at Phil shows? How many people didn’t jump on tickets for whatever shows they want to hit this summer yet as well? I mean who cares if they keep in this direction. Drills standup basses and Monica. Enjoy you rimjob seeking slaves to the scarf and the leather wingsuit.

Thaddeus Kosciuszko April 24, 2014, 05:55:36

Mike “Fancy Pants” Gordon now apparently believes he is the reincarnation of Clark Gable.
If you have more time to waste Dear Phish Phans check out the price of those fancy duds Gordon is showing off in the Esquire article. Phish should call that new highly anticipated recording WINGSHIT.

timmy April 24, 2014, 09:23:33

Whenever I think of a saucy little minx, Mike Gordon’s name is the first one that pops in my head. I think the writing is on the wall. Phish is done. Mike has found his true calling on the runway. Couldn’t have happened to a prettier man. What a gorgeous fashionista. You go girlfriend!

John April 24, 2014, 11:19:13

Why all the negative comments? Who cares if Mike Gordon like to dress a certain way – he still kicks ass on the bass, right? plus, I’ve never seen a Phish show and thought that was a “trainweck” as someone said in one of the comments. Chill fellas

timmy April 24, 2014, 12:18:23

I wasn’t trying to be negative. I’m just pointing out that beyond Mike’s bass skills, he is a saucy little minx.

John Earlyphan April 24, 2014, 12:54:49

I suppose it’s nice to look good, but it’s even better to feel good. $800 hat is unnecessary, but food in a child’s belly is. Try feeding something other than your image and you may find relevance again.

LetsGoCaps April 24, 2014, 13:31:24

Partying at Princes? Did they play basketball, and most importantly, did Prince make them pancakes afterward?

John Horsecock April 24, 2014, 16:47:29

Prince doesn’t eat pancakes. He only eats grits and chicken which is very well documented. His blood is actually half malt liquor, so Mike got wasted when they made out.

MarZaPhiGar April 25, 2014, 16:01:01

I miss Jerry.

yelnick Mc wawa April 25, 2014, 21:53:35

Who really cares and even more than that why would you care what the fuck he wears. I used to go and see this band in which this one cat would always wear the same black t-shirts until he switched to a dark red t-shirt. I really miss those 400 nights and sometimes afternoons of seeing that band. And may the four winds blow you safely home no matter what the fuck you wear. Mike Gordon really should start with losing that fucking ego. I only saw phish once because as they are all world class musicians,they write some of the worst songs that i have ever heard. Ever,Ever.

MarZaPhiGar April 26, 2014, 01:16:08

Phish = twee.

MarZaPhiGar April 26, 2014, 01:48:55

Halley’s Comet
Heavy Things AC/DC Bag
Esther Piper
Harry Hood
A Song I Heard The Ocean Sing
Golgi Apparatus

yelnick mc wawa April 26, 2014, 13:17:44

My point is proven who writes this kinda shit? What they should do is concentrate on the cover songs they do.

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