Monday, October 6, 2008

THE STAGE HECKLER: Phish 2009 tour plans conjure up a brainmelter

The majesty, mastery, magic, and confusion of a Phish concert
For those of you who haven't heard, Phish are planning some shows in 2009...YES!!! This is BIG BIG NEWS, since they've been disbanded for most of this decade.

I only see plans for 3 shows in Hampton, Virginia during March so far...hopefully more will pop up!

This news, of course, reminds me of the last and only time I saw this band...about 10 years ago, when I lived in Tucson, I found myself at a Phish concert on the Pima County Fairgrounds.

It might be helpful to understand where I was coming from going into that show.

For those of you who are familiar with Phish and their shtick, you might be very amused by this:
before that day in 1999, I had never heard a Phish song before in my entire life...NOT KIDDING.

It's the only concert experience I can think of where I went into the show knowing NOTHING about what the band sounded like.

However here's what I DID know:

  1. They were from Vermont.
  2. They were a jam band that echoed elements of the Grateful Dead.
  3. They had a loyal fan following, which comprised a subculture similar to that of Deadheads.
  4. More Deadheads drifted into the Phish camp since Jerry Garcia's passing in 1995.
  5. They built that following on live performance and toured ceaselessly.
  6. Some (if not all) of their song titles were bizarre and made absolutely no sense (to me) that didn't help to give the slightest clue on what to expect...other than something "outside the box," let's say.
  7. They had 4 members and I heard they had traded instruments once onstage.
So that was it...needless to say, the experience made my head spin...right off. Literally. Their musicianship, coupled with their silliness, both mystified and left me utterly confused.

It also made me a fan for life.

Since then I've been looking for a live recording of that show, which I've yet to's the set list from that night:

Tuesday, September 21, 1999
Pima County Fairgrounds, Tucson, AZ

  • Reba
  • Bold as Love

The set list information is courtesy of the Mockingbird Foundation.

So tickets are on sale right now through the Phish website. Hopefully they'll do a west coast swing next year...stay tuned for more information as it comes out. I'll try to stay on top of this one.


Ellis Godard said...

Glad you found them, Sweva. And thanks for the Mockingbird Foundation mention. Mbird just announced two Hampton grants - see And see you in March!

Sweva said...

Hey there Ellis, thanks for stopping by...I'll check out that link!

I'm TOTALLY AMPED about them touring again...I think everyone knew it was only a matter of time.

I really hope we have dates after Hampton...they must. I'm assuming that Hampton's simply be a warm up.

VanKooKoo said...

I've heard it from 2 sources that Trey's show at the Roseland on the 16th will include a surprise mini-reunion - likely during any encores.

Sweva said...

That would be a great surprise...does anyone out there have insights on how extensive their tour might be next year?

joe said...

heres the show.... enjoy

Disc 1:

Set 1

01 Poor Heart (02:53)
02 Sample in a Jar (05:09)
03 Split Open and Melt (12:15)
04 Drowned (17:19)
05 I Didn't Know (04:19)
06 Get Back on the Train (04:50)
07 Birds of a Feather (07:38)
08 Theme from the Bottom (10:34)
09 Golgi Apparatus (05:21)

Disc 2:

Set 2

01 Carini > (10:09)
02 Bug (10:50)
03 Strange Design (03:39)
04 Vultures > (12:05)
05 Limb by Limb (08:50)

Disc 3:

01 Will it Go Round in Circles (07:46)
02 Dirt (05:15)
03 Run Like an Antelope (21:20)


04 Reba (16:20)
05 Bold as Love (08:08)

Sweva said...

Sweeeeeeeeeeeeet! Great find Joe...we'll check that out!