“Go-Suto” (Japanese: Ghost)

Osaka 2000

As soon as Phish debuted “Ghost” in their first show of Summer ’97, the song became a staple jam vehicle for Phish. Moving with the band’s musical direction of the late-90s, “Ghost” featured groove, rock, and ambient jams depending on the era, almost always providing a highlight for any show in which it appeared. And then in Phish’s second show of 2000, at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, the band rewrote the record books for their late-90’s song. Exploring the hyper-complexities of groove and moving far beyond them into completely transcendent music, Phish threw down, perhaps, the greatest version ever played.

After such a blowout, one would figure the band continued magnifying the song for the rest of the summer, let alone the rest of the year. But they didn’t. While the Phish played solid “Ghosts” in Hartford (7.1), Chicago (9.22), and Denver (9.27), the band only took out the song six times after Radio City. And only one truly stood out – 6.15.00. Phish let loose on the final standout “Ghost” of the pre-hiatus years on the penultimate night of Japan tour in Osaka, Japan. Towards the end of the first set, the band unveiled the only Japanese version of the song, and as it turned out, the last truly great version of 2000.

6.11.00 - Tokyo (E.Sakai)

In Big Cat, a small club, elevated six floors amidst a shopping plaza, the audience squeezed into the small, square room. The predominantly Japanese audience packed it in, as the concept of personal space differed from that in the states – a lot. Before long, a combination of fans began filling the room with blown-up balloons, like a life-sized lottery bin. But when the music started, silence fell, and everyone’s focus turned squarely to the stage.

After a routine four-song, set-opening sequence, Trey quietly initiated a series of siren loops, opening the only “Ghost” of the Pacific. Following the composed section, the band oozed into the piece with a methodical, bass-led groove. Taking ample time to settle into a thick rhythmic canvas, the band pondered the early course of the jam before diving in. Mike took the melodic lead, while Trey and Page added effects, beginning the excursion in a sparse dance pattern. Trey coyly began to pick a melody within the groove, very much blending with whole, yet bringing a whole new element to the table.  Amidst a increasingly murkier plane, Fishman hit a disco-like groove that Mike immediately latched onto, bringing memories of the infectious dance odyssey weeks ago at Radio City. Page and Trey began to gently toy with the beat, and all of a sudden, the band rolled into subconscious territory.

6.15.00 Big Cat Ticket

6.15.00 - Big Cat Ticket

Offering independent melodic ideas along these uptempo rhythms, Trey stepped into prominence, before long, playing an open chord progression that would guide the band through an upbeat, out-of-character second half of the jam. The rest of his band mates picked up on his idea, gradually building a triumphant build over these changes, Meanwhile, after setting the musical plate, Trey transformed into the a cathartic waterfall of notes and melody, peaking the piece in a rolling, cyclical fashion. Uniting all the energy in the room, Phish took sailing on the majestic seas of bliss, drawing out the apex of the jam in an all-out celebration of the human spirit. After the peak, the band seamlessly slid back into “Ghost,” bringing this version to a close.

The Osaka “Ghost”  became an immediate highlight of Japan 2000, and without anyone knowing at the time, represented the last pre-hiatus triumph for the song. This moving piece of music goes under-circulated due to its international origins, and has thus been under-appreciated over the years. Everyone knows the Radio City “Ghost,” and rightfully so. This one came next.


Jam of the Day:

Ghost” 6.15.00 I Rmstr

This standout version of the song has recently been remastered by Phish Thoughts reader, “Kenny Powers,” and is available to download by clicking the orange title above.




5.23.00 Roseland, NYC, NY SBD < Torrent

5.23.00 Roseland, NYC, NY SBD < Megaupload

Roseland Ballroom - NYC

During and after the first Radio City show, fans lined the sidewalks of Manhattan to get tickets for Phish’s just-announced show at Roseland the night after. The intimate gig was filmed for VH-1’s “Hard Rock Live,” and though the show was relatively jam-less, the event provided a special night in the spring of 2000.

I: AC/DC Bag, Wilson, First Tube, Ya Mar, Mike’s Song > Simple > It’s Ice, When the Circus Comes, Back on the Train, Gotta Jibboo, Taste, Sleeping Monkey

II: Punch You In the Eye, Twist, Waste, Piper, You Enjoy Myself, Run Like an Antelope, Train Song, Bug

E: Boogie On Reggae Woman, Cavern

Source: SBD

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528 Responses to ““Go-Suto” (Japanese: Ghost)”

  1. ChefBradford Says:

    I’m there, dude

  2. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    shit that IS a wtf

  3. whole tour! Says:

    hells yes!

  4. Kenny Powers Says:


    just saw your comment, I agree the new Black Keys album is sick! Real gritty and minimal but with a 70s psychedelic vibe, almost Shuggie Otis-like.

  5. Frankie Says:

    Hey KP! Love the evolution with these guys… Attack and Release was great and this is another great step… Can’t wait to see them this summer although they are a studio band for me… great production and songwriting!

    The vinyl comes with a cd of the album and a huge poster with the lyrics on one side…

    Thanks for that remastered Ghost! Haven’t had a chance to play it yet but I will soon!

  6. Frankie Says:

    Too Afraid To Love You clip for those interested…

  7. halcyon Says:

    Cool song Frankie….

    I dug their BlackRoc album they cut not too long ago. Gritty blend of R & B and hip hop

  8. Frankie Says:

    I think that song is heavily influenced by the BlakRoc record… not a huge listener of hip hop but i liked that project for the spontaneity of it all… have you seen the clips on youtube in the studio… cool stuff!

  9. Frankie Says:

    This is the RZA one…

  10. halcyon Says:

    This is sad and wrong, but hysterical.


  11. butter Says:

    man, gettin super pumped for Furthurfest

    just heard attendance will be 8-10 thousand

    head stash

  12. butter Says:

    glow stick , really , glow sticks

    bet your ass my daughter is sportin’ some necklace or bracelet or some shit at her 2 this summer (Mansfield, Greek 1) number 3 and 4 for the little baby baller

  13. BTB Says:

    arent’ they covering complete albums Butter? What’s your take on that?

  14. butter Says:

    i think that sums it up tho, that glo sticks are ok for 7 year olds , but you gotta think it thru for full grown adults

  15. butter Says:

    you know BTB, with a band thats done it all like the Dead

    i think its a good thing

    they are looking for something that pushes them and helps them get outside their box

  16. BTB Says:

    anyone have an extra 7/3 ??

  17. fee4zy Says:

    love Shuggie Otis! Haven’t listened to that one for a while. Must get that out tomorrow.

  18. BTB Says:

    Yeah, I found it interesting. If they didn’t say anything and they played 6 albums everyone would think it was ‘special’, but since they announced it, people give it the ‘meh’ treatment.

    As with most live shows, I guess it just depends on how they play, right? That’s what I would focus on.

  19. sumodie Says:

    Would love to check out FurtherFest. As for covering 6 complete albums, not sure I’d want my music that pre-programmed. Will be curious to read reviews

  20. ChefBradford Says:

    I need a 7/3, too

  21. butter Says:

    Phil did a bunch of albums in chronological order for the closing of the Warfield, SF (which did not close)

    it was great, but at times we did find ourselves looking at the album they where playing on our hand held pda’s seeing what song was next….

    but shit its the future right?

    and lets not kid, when you are on tour you usually have a good idea of what’s coming next anyway

  22. ChefBradford Says:

    Somebody on here had 2 extra pavs for 7/3, but I think wanted to sell them together.

    BTB, would you be willing to split those if we can find them?

  23. butter Says:

    If they didn’t say anything and they played 6 albums everyone would think it was ’special’, but since they announced it, people give it the ‘meh’ treatment.

    ^^ yes people will give it the ‘meh’ treatment, but the 8 – 10 thousand that are there will have a much diff story, guaranteed

  24. Frankie Says:

    Which Shuggie Otis would you recommend? I don’t know him…

  25. BTB Says:

    Chef – yeah, for sure. I’d be down for that.

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