The Road Ahead

After a whole lot of waiting, Phish finally dropped their fall tour dates last Friday, confirming many long-standing rumors and providing a couple surprises as well. The band will hit the road for 13 shows a little more than two weeks after Festival 8, starting in the Midwest on November 18, but remaining largely in the Northeast -here’s a preview.

header2The kick-off of Fall ’09 at Cobo Arena in Detroit, MI, though speculated upon, still surprised most fans. The iconic 12,191 seat venue was made famous by KISS in 1975 when they recorded their breakthrough album “Alive!”there. Having recently hosted a homecoming from the glam-rockers less than a month ago, Cobo Arena will host Phish before getting torn down later this year to expand Cobo Convention Center.

Cobo Hall - Detroit, MI

Cobo Arena - Detroit, MI

Following a rare-off day following the tour opener, the band hops south to Cincinnati for a two-night stand in the venue formerly known as “The Crown.” Phish has included The Crown on their tour docket consistently since Fall ’98, making these their sixth and seventh shows in the arena. Highlights from shows past include ’98’s “Bowie” and “YEM,” ’99’s “Sand,” “Limb,” and “Split,” and ’03’s “Bathtub Gin.” A building with a definite Phish-friendly legacy, this marks the band’s third twin-bill at The Crown; a Friday/Saturday combo that will certainly pull fans from all over the country.

War Memorial - Syracuse, NY

War Memorial - Syracuse, NY

From Cincy, Phish will stop in Syracuse, NY for an intimate Sunday night at the 8,000-seat Onondaga War Memorial. A staple of the ABA and AHL circuits, Phish visited the under-sized venue during their hallowed month of November of ’94. Coincidentally, KISS is the only major rock act that routinely stopped at the venue better known for minor league sports and professional wrestling events. This one should be exciting! Following another day off, we bounce down to Philly to begin the highly anticipated east coast blowout. This high-key run starts with Phish’s first visit to the new-school Wachovia Center – across the street from The Spectrum. Philadelphia Phish never disappoints; and after a glorious past at The Spectrum, expect the band to christen their new Philly home in fine style.

Times-Union Center - Albany, NY

Times-Union Center - Albany, NY

Only taking one day off on Thanksgiving Day, Phish will start working off their turkey the very next night, starting a third two-night stand at “Knickerbocker Arena” in Albany. Another historic haunt that has been violated by corporate sponsorship, this building has hosted many classic nights of Phish dating back to the historic 12/9/95 gig that included one of the top “YEMs” ever. The site of two tour-ending stands in the falls of ’97 and ’99, these upcoming shows will be Phish’s tenth and eleventh on Pearl St. Albany has always blended well with Phish, and this post-holiday stop looks to follow in that tradition.

CCCC - Portland, ME

CCCC - Portland, ME

The very next night, instead of making an expected stop in Worcester, MA, Phish surprised everyone by announcing a trip north to Portland, ME ‘s universally-loved Cumberland County Civic Center. Beginning with their first solo gig on 12.30.93, the 9,000 person room hosted five shows through ’99 and some truly epic Phish. A phenomenal room for a show, this Sunday night affair deserves a circle on everyone’s calendar.



With two days to rest-up and relax, Phish finally returns to Madison Square Garden. Arguably the greatest Phish venue in the land, the band hasn’t stepped foot in the 34th St. mecca since their first comeback on 12/31/02. These three nights at The Garden – December 2,3, and 4 – are the “no-brainer,” “Get-Your-Ass-There-At-All-Costs” shows of the tour. In a building where Phish has dropped many career-defining nights of music, the prodigal band shall return for three more monster-sized shows laced with big-city psychedelia.  And to cap off the tour, Phish flies south to Charlottesville, VA – home of their Red Light Management – in a move reminiscent of Winter ’03’s Greensboro finale. This year’s ending installment takes place in John Paul Jones Arena, University of Virginia’s brand-new basketball facility that opened in 2006 and holds over 15,000. This show not only concludes the tour, but also tops Phish’s only four-night run of Fall ’09. Though the tour is a relatively quick jaunt, almost every show will be a high-profile affair with more than a few guaranteed throw-downs. And when Phish steps indoors, the entire game changes; so watch out!


11.18.09 Cobo Arena, Detroit, MI
11.20.09 U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati, OH
11.21.09 U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati, OH
11.22.09 War Memorial at Oncenter , Syracuse, NY
11.24.09 Wachovia Center, Philadelphia, PA
11.25.09 Wachovia Center, Philadelphia, PA
11.27.09 Times Union Center, Albany, NY
11.28.09 Times Union Center, Albany, NY
11.29.09 Cumberland County Civic Center, Portland, ME
12.02.09 Madison Square Garden , New York, NY
12.03.09 Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
12.04.09 Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
12.05.09 John Paul Jones Arena, Charlottesville, VA

The  ticket “lottery” is officially underway. The ticket request period will end this Friday, October 16th at 5:00pm EST.

Tickets go on sale to the public beginning Friday, October 23rd, with additional dates going on sale Saturday, October 24th. For full show and ticketing information, please visit

Winged music note=====

Jam of the Day:

Bathtub Gin > 2001 > YEM” 12.2.99 II


A sparkling section of improv from Phish’s first show of December ’99 at The Palace in Auburn Hills, MI.



12.2.99 The Palace, Auburn Hills, MI < Torrent

12.2.99 The Palace, Auburn Hills, MI < Megaupload

The Palace - Auburn Hills, MI

The Palace - Auburn Hills, MI

Here is another tour-opener from the Motown area. This one got going quickly with highlight versions of “Antelope” and “Free” in the first frame, and heated up in earnest after the break with the smoking segment of “Bathtub > 2001 > YEM.”

I: Runaway Jim, Farmhouse, Heavy Things, Roggae, Run Like an Antelope, Wading in the Velvet Sea, Poor Heart, Sample in a Jar, Free, The Squirming Coil

II: Boogie On Reggae Woman, Gotta Jibboo, Bathtub Gin > Also Sprach Zarathustra >You Enjoy Myself > Little Drummer Boy

E: Bold As Love

Source: B&K 4023’s > V2 > D8 @ 44.1

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227 Responses to “The Road Ahead”

  1. albert walker Says:

    I want Ziggy, Exile, London Calling

    Unfortunately Exile and London Calling are double records so who knows.
    I would have no problems with Sticky Fingers either.

    Like Loaded, Quadrophenia, and Fear of Music all of these records are on my 50 best rock album list

  2. KWL Says:

    Electric Ladyland, Apostrophe, Lamb Lies Down, in no particular order

    Ziggy & London Calling round out top 5

  3. Lycanthropist Says:

    Would love all of those aw.

    add Kid A and Led Zep IV to my list

  4. beepaphone Says:

    Not a lot of Yes talk…The Yes Album would be good, but I would rather see Fragile as the representative.

    Right or wrong I do not possess the zen-like control to execute the Dribble Method.

  5. albert walker Says:

    I would love some FZ, but along with Curtis Mayfield, and Miles Davis it goes in my just can’t do list.
    Learning chord charts and a few riffs is one thing, but the amount of practicing needed to throw down some Zappa would probably be a little more than they want to deal with right now.

    Would be great though.

  6. beepaphone Says:

    Zep IV would be good, but for whatever reason, the prospect of hearing Phish playing Stairway doesn’t do it for me.

  7. Lycanthropist Says:

    re: self soiling –

    NOTHING is worth the germ fest that is crapping your pants.

    Please, remember that you are potty trained at shows.

    I don’t want to smell your shit..

    I can handle most everything, and no accidents happen, but if you CONSCIOUSLY choose to shit yourself… well I am gonna have to question your IQ, and your ability to drive a car, your right to be at the show, etc etc.


    dont shit where I eat (drawing a very loose line to eating phish, sorry)

  8. fat bastard Says:

    alright albert, walking to reckless records to get ziggy and exile.

  9. fat bastard Says:

    after i burn this joint.

  10. Lycanthropist Says:

    meant to say, ” I KNOW accidents happen” not “no accidents happen”

  11. KWL Says:

    Actually, it doesn’t really matter to me what they play as the cover set–its going to smoke, no matter what, and if history is any guide they will pick up a new jam vehicle, which we should start to see develop during the fall dates.

    The only thing I really want to see this fall is for them to open it up a bit during set 1. Some type II goodness right in the middle of set 1, or even to start the show–a monster Mike’s for example, or a 20 minute Drowned that segues into STFTFP or something like that.

  12. albert walker Says:

    And he was alright, the band was all together
    Yes he was alright, the song went on forever
    And he was awful nice
    Really quite paradise
    And he sang all night long

    This shit was written for Trey to sing on halloween
    no doubt

  13. mrfergie Says:

    Would love to see them play Zappa, but his widow holds on to the rights to those songs pretty tightly. Word is she’ll only release the rights to her children…

  14. Mr. Completely Says:

    dosing hotel doorknobs? what a waste.

    re: MGMT I wouldn’t leave anywhere or anything, LOL

    the album is fine but just not at the level of deserving hallowed Halloween status – it’s stylish enough to be fun, but…

  15. Neemor Says:

    11.29.09 CCCC Portland, ME

    Set II:
    It Must Be A Camel>
    Camel Walk>
    Roses Are Free>
    Love You>
    Run Like an Antelope

    E: Wading In The Velvet Sea,
    Peaches En Regalia

  16. SOAM Says:

    For all you shitheads (i thought I was sick)-blast a few oxy’s and your cornhole will tighten up for a day and half…eliminating all soiling issues.

  17. Neemor Says:

    11.30.09 Hartford XL Center Hartford, CT.
    Set I:

    AC/DC Bag>
    Crimes of the Mind*>
    Funky Bitch>
    Them Changes,
    Sleeping Monkey,
    The Squirming Coil

    * With The Dude of Life
    ** Suffragette City quotes and Reba jam

  18. SJC Says:

    when was the last dude appearance? Last one I can think of was New Haven ’98 with the alternate Suzy lyrics. Anyone?

  19. Neemor Says:

    11.22.09 War Memorial at OnCenter, Syracuse, NY

    Set II:

    Halley’s Comet>
    I Am Hydrogen>
    Avenu Malkenu>
    David Bowie

    E: Buffalo Bill>
    Bold as Love

  20. Neemor Says:

    I think that was the last Dude appearance.
    I was there.
    Yay, me.
    And 12,000 of my closest friends.
    I barely remember that show, venue has been torn down.

  21. Neemor Says:

    Weekapaug opens Philly on 11/24, BTW.

  22. Leo Weaver Says:

    ^ I like that set Neemor, just swap the Ghost and Halley’s…

  23. Pence Says:

    I dont understand why there isnt more talk about them covering Hunky Dory by Bowie. Everybody is expecting ziggy, but I think it would be a quality dark horse…I mean it has Life on Mars. Some good potential rock songs with queen bitch, and id like to see their spin on changes. Its not my number one, but it wouldnt disappoint me.

  24. fat bastard Says:

    aw- i don’t recognize those lyrics.

  25. SJC Says:

    Can’t remember the New Haven show either – DWD opener > big blur > Dude of Life encore. That’s my only takeaway from that one.

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