An Acoustic Set ?

festival8-caIn an unexpected twist, Phish announced yesterday that one of their Festival 8 sets will be an acoustic affair. At the “crack of noon” on Sunday, Phish will perform a their first “full length” acoustic set to a combined flock of early risers and those still reveling from the night before.  Following the darkness of Halloween night, Phish will balance things out with a light afternoon offering. With the virtually-guaranteed weather of Indio, this set should be a laid-back way to kick off the last day of the festival.  And yes, coffee and donuts will be served.

To be honest, my first reaction to the announcement was -“Wow, that sucks!”  And while I would still rather hear a straight up Phish set any day of the week, I’ve begun to think this may be something special.  First, off – it’s not gonna be Trey solo on a stool – the watered-down sing-along experience most of us are used to.  Second, I don’t think Phish would unplug just to unplug, they must have a concept of what form this set will take.  Third, I’ve seen over hundreds of electric Phish sets, and zero acoustic, so the pure novelty of the experience will make it worth the while. Sunday morning Phish – coffee and spliffs – sounds good to me.

Acoutsic Mini-Set '96 (J.M.Richter)

Acoutsic Mini-Set '96 (J.M.Richter)

One immediately wonders what music they will play during this set at high noon. The Bridge School Benefit shows in October 1998 – apparently not qualifying as “full-length sets”- saw the band play many of their standard tunes in the acoustic setting.  Their sets got rave reviews and were highlighted by a first-night “Harry Hood > Helpless” with Neil Young. And during Summer ’96,Phish used acoustic mini-sets to showcase some of “Billy Breathes” songs. This time, left to their own devices, Phish will craft an afternoon that will most likely be quite memorable. Much like the unexpected “Harry Hood” at Shoreline 11 years ago, I’m sure Phish will pull out more than a few surprises in their afternoon escapade. I can’t see them dedicating an entire set of their festival to something that won’t be great; they haven’t done that in their previous seven festivals, why start now? But it will have to be some pretty damn good acoustic playing to sit in for an “full-length”set of electric Phish; these guys aren’t the Grateful Dead after all.

But bring it on – the only rule is it begins after all. With seven other electric sets throughout the weekend, and many more to come, we can all chill for a bit with our favorite band on the outskirts of the California desert. If Phish is feeling it, everything should work out. And with so many other sets surrounding this afternoon oasis, I don’t think we’ll be leaving Indio lacking any improv.


The entire Festival 8 Schedule is as follows:

FRIDAY (10/30)
4:00PM Concert field opens
7:30PM Set I
10:00PM Set II

SATURDAY (10/31)
12:00PM Concert field opens
3:00PM Set I
7:30PM The Halloween Set
10:00PM Set III

SUNDAY (11/01)
10:00AM Concert field opens
12:00PM Acoustic Set
5:30PM Set II
8:30PM Set III

From With lush green fields and palm trees, and surrounded by vistas of California’s majestic Santa Rosa mountains, the festival site is simply breathtaking. The band will play eight sets over the course of three days, and as with all past Phish festivals, fans will enjoy on-site camping, numerous attractions and art installations throughout the weekend.

Winged music note=====

Jams of the Day:

Harry Hood > Helpless” 10.17.98


The acoustic highlight from The Bridge School Benefit.

AC/DC Bag > Ghost” 11.7.98 II


This combo from UIC is one of the enduring highlights of Fall ’98. Did you really think I would leave you hanging with an acoustic Jam of the Day?



9.25.00 Sandstone Pavilion, Bonner Springs, KS < Torrent

9.25.00 Sandstone Pavilion, Bonner Springs, KS < Megaupload

Unofficial Poster

Unofficial Poster

Today is the nine year anniversary of one of the coldest outdoor shows in memory.  The end of September in Kansas- whew!  Steam rose from dancing bodies as Phish pumped through the piercing air.  Opening the show with “Everybody’s Got Something to Hide Except Me and My Monkey” for the first time since Halloween of ’94, the show took off into a rather large first set with a “Disease” and a “Tweezer.”  The second set brought the anthems of “Mike’s Groove” and “Hood.”  All in all – a solid show.

I: Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except Me And My Monkey, Down with Disease, Lizards, Tweezer, Back on The Train, Water in the Sky, Bug, Julius

II: Gotta Jibboo, Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove, Axilla, Harry Hood, Funky Bitch

E: Boogie On Reggae Woman, Driver, Tweezer Reprise

Source: Neumann KM184’s


10.17 & 10.18.1998 – Bridge School Benefit < Torrent

10.17 & 10.18.1998 – Bridge School Benefit < Megaupload

DSC_0061-752349Some acoustic Phish to get prepared for the upcoming acoustic set.

Setlists are here.

Source: Schoeps CCM4

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278 Responses to “An Acoustic Set ?”

  1. Danny B Says:

    Mdawg- acoustic with an orchestra is a definitely possible, could be really cool. Personally I hope that they play lots of great unique versions of Phish songs like Billy Breathers, FEFY, Dog Faced Boy, Talk, Taste, etc.

    A poignant, emotional, unique morning treat.

  2. Kenny Powers Says:

    @ halcyon,

    yes that Mullins show was posted here a few weeks ago.

  3. fat bastard Says:

    beep left his tab open,
    when he saw the band,
    and beep left his tab open at the band!
    what did he drink to get wasted?
    mimosas on the tab!

  4. Robear Says:

    Yes, I’ll have to put those ingredients on the shopping list for Sunday: OJ, champagne, Clubs, magnifying lens, glass tube, blanket…

  5. beepaphone Says:


  6. VTsnowboarder802 Says:

    @mrC – “So let them play what they want and trust it will be cool”


  7. halcyon Says:

    @ Kenny … I just found it. More motivation for me to organize my s***.

  8. stashylimbs Says:

    Fingers crossed for the first ever And So To Bed during the acoustic set

  9. Mr. Completely Says:

    surprise orchestra set in the middle of the night

  10. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    flatbed truck orchestra ambient tower jam?

  11. fat bastard Says:

    anything from “clone” last night? i want a collins missle probably never happen w/o leo.

  12. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    midnight to dawn flatbed truck orchestra ambient tower jam with acrobats

  13. whole tour! Says:

    worst thread ever: ‘phish haters’ on lossless legs

    i’ve given up trying explain phish to hardened, myopic deadheads. some people will never understand, nor try to.
    just an absurd thread with people making themselves look stupid trying to explain why they hate phish.

  14. voopa Says:

    “midnight to dawn flatbed truck orchestra ambient tower jam with acrobats”

    in the disco tent at the lamppost

  15. Jay Says:

    We got tabs open
    cause we got as band
    and we got tabs open in the band

  16. Daves Energy Says:

    Im glad you came around Mr. Miner. No matter what, it will be a sight to behold. Acoustic phish in the sun. The question still remains, bluegrass or phish compositions or both.

  17. beepaphone Says:

    I don’t think so, though I’m not super familiar with that album. Only heard it a couple times and don’t know the names of the songs on it.

  18. Mitch Says:

    Speaking of getting bassed. Has anyone seen a copy of the Brooklyn show anywhere? I didn’t see tapers so it may not exist. I’m hoping its out there somewhere.

  19. beepaphone Says:

    Will – they – make fun of meeeee when I pick it uuuup – oooo oooooooo
    beepaphone – dumb-ass

  20. Mr. Completely Says:

    that’s a pretty well done interview – great link, thank you for posting it

    nice mix of personal stuff and information…not prying too much…but really something to hear him talk about his sister, and his daughters. The Basement Tapes bit at the end is pretty classic – clear that he hadn’t thought of it, and liked the idea, it was a cool reaction – and the fact that they’re still in flux album-wise is interesting.

  21. halcyon Says:

    mitch…i saw a link for the brooklyn show a while ago. If I find it, I will post here later today.

  22. halcyon Says:

    Yeah Mr. C..once again the interview shows the depth of some of the songs recently released on Joy.

  23. Mr. Completely Says:

    I particularly liked that the guy seemed like he kinda got Phish at least a little but wasn’t a Chris Farley fanboy

    “you remember that time you played on the flatbed truck…? and drove around in the middle of the night…? that was awesome

  24. Jay Says:

    In the voice of a fanboy “He he he he Phish is cool”

  25. Mr. Completely Says:

    on an only vaguely related note – both the Beatles remasters and Joy really show how much you lose when you make an MP3

    I rip MP3s on max settings only, but when I listen to any of the above after hearing the originals, I can hear the loss. It’s not terrible, but the uncompressed albums sound fucking *ridiculous* – I was listening to You Never Give Me Your Money last night on the actual CD and had kind of an out of body experience, something the Beatles haven’t done to me since I was maybe 13. Now listening today to the mp3s, there’s just a lot of detail lost, the high and low ends, clarity in the stereo image…Joy is the same way…turn Stealing Time up really loud on the album and it breathes fire…

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