What’s Up With Halloween?

"Loving Cup" 10.31.09 (G.Lucas)

With a haunted gallery of 99 possible cover albums and a wild-goose chase with the infamous “Save the Date” map, Phish put together elaborate guessing-games for their fans to hype up Halloween 2009. This year, we have heard nothing at all. The silence around Halloween – the band has made no official announcement as to their intent for the show – has caused some people to question whether Phish will be covering an album at all. With a similar ticket time as the other two Atlantic City shows and billed as a “very special Halloween show,” fans have been left to their own devices to figure out what Halloween will bring.

Halloween 1996

Conventional wisdom – and tradition – dictates that Phish will cover an album during the show’s second set. With nothing stated to the contrary, one would assume business as usual. In addition to fun and mystery, last year’s fanfare around Festival 8 was – in large part – a marketing campaign to get east coasters to Indio. But it was also an aberration. Aside from the fan balloting in 1994 and 1995, the band didn’t made a lot of noise about their Halloween plans in the past, and with a $3 price increase to pre-order the show on LivePhish, the band has all-but confirmed a three-setter. Thus far, fans have stuck with more classic rock hypotheses for Phish’s likely musical costume with Led Zeppelin’s “Physical Graffiti” leading the charge. Will Phish stick to their path of covering classics, or might they step to a more contemporary record as suggested by several of last year’s finalists? Might they take a stab at the long-time fan favorite, “Thriller,” test the rock and roll fantasy of “Ziggy Stardust,” or honor New Jersey’s native son with “Born to Run?” Would they really try to play Radiohead as rumored was the orginal plan for Indio? The questions abound, but there have been no clues leaked as to the answers.

Halloween 1995

As Fall Tour mail order tickets trickled in over the past couple days, fans began to wonder if the ornate ticket designs – each representing a different Phish song – could be a clue to an alternate Halloween plan. Of six venue-specific designs, four depict Gamehendge-based songs – “Llama,” “Mockingbird,” “Sloth,” and “Punch You In the Eye” – prompting some to theorize that Phish would play Trey’s hallowed musical fable on Halloween…until the last two tickets were discovered to be “Ocelot” and “Dog-Faced Boy.” Others saw an animal theme aside from “Punch” and followed that clue to Pink Floyd’s “Animals.” But having already covered Dark Side during Fall ’98, a repeat artist seems highly unlikely. Like sleuths looking for a needle in a haystack, fans tried to pull any clue from the ticket layout, but, in all likelihood, there are none there.

Per usual, Phish has their fans guessing what is coming next, and that is part of the fun of Halloween. The band has clearly kept their plan under wraps and things will likely remain that way until we walk into Boardwalk Hall on October 31st. And that’s how it should be. While last year’s album elimination brought a lot of fun and the introduction to droves of new music, the essence of Halloween is the unknown – trick or treat? Between now and then, fans will continue to guess what album will fill the second set of October 31st – but if things follow past patterns, Phish will likely surprise us all. “Houses of the Holy?” “Electric Ladyland?” “The Band?” “Lark’s Tongue In Aspic?” “Greetings From Asbury Park?” “Hot Rats?” Your guess is as good as mine…


Jam of the Day:

Free” 12.15.99 II

A stellar ’99 “Free” from Washington, DC that featuring a segment of Trey on keyboard that works masterfully.




10.10.1994 Palace Theatre Louisville, KY < Torrent asap

10.10.1994 Palace Theatre Louisville, KY < Megaupload

The Palace - Louisville, KY

I: Sample in a Jar, The Divided Sky, The Horse > Silent in the Morning, Sparkle, Stash, Guyute, The Old Home Place*, Ginseng Sullivan*, Nellie Kane*, Chalk Dust Torture

II: Golgi Apparatus, Maze, Esther, Tweezer, Fee > Rift, Down with Disease, Hold Your Head Up > Love You > Hold Your Head Up, Slave to the Traffic Light

E: Foreplay/Long Time*, Tweezer Reprise

* w/ Steve Cooley on banjo

Source: AKG 460 (likely)

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606 Responses to “What’s Up With Halloween?”

  1. KWL Says:

    gonna really, really enjoy every bit of my last month in CO though. couldn’t be happier that i got 3 phish shows tossed in the mix.

  2. KWL Says:

    i think i’m getting old, b/c these days i would rather be near the back of GA venues. sound & space, i don’t need to see these dudes up close anymore

  3. halcyon Says:

    While there are times I like to be close, most of the time it gets too claustrophobic at times up front. I like having some elbow room.

  4. jdub Says:

    Nice thing about Broomfield is the back of the venue is pretty damn close.

    Doesn’t look like there is anywhere to escape if things get out of hand.

  5. Mitch Says:

    even if your stereo is older, you can usually get a conversion cable from an aux or cd changer input and convert it to a jack. then use mini to mini jack.

    best buy if they do installation by you wouldn’t charge too much.


  6. Aquaman Says:

    I am not sure if yo are still on KWL.

    I have just read back to you thanking me for the Ryder Cup links.

    May I say…..love the signature.

    Mitch made fun for a time. Now it’s catching on. All it takes is one. Next -> a revolution.

    -Aqua “The Alpha” Man-

  7. Aquaman Says:


    As a youngster I used to pour over the crutchfield catalogs.

    I wonder why I stopped getting those?

  8. Aquaman Says:

    Forgot my sig,

    -Aqua “Who the hell uses catalogs in the age of the interwebs” man-

  9. DukeOfLizards Says:

    Aqua – Ryder Cup links?

  10. Aquaman Says:

    Random music thought,

    1) I like phish
    2) I am loving this 12/1/95 Mike’s -> Week from Hershey. Raging and unique.


  11. Stupendous a.k.a The Beasel Says:

    Its weird that i have a seat assigned on all of my tix but it says its GA

  12. Aquaman Says:


    Here you go -> LIVE RYDER CUP

    Live it…..Live


  13. Aquaman Says:

    Countdown says

    1 day 10hrs 40 min to Ryder Cup greatness.


  14. Stupendous a.k.a The Beasel Says:

    1st bank center is a small fraction of AAA in Miami, and i thought those are the most comfortable indoor shows i had been in as far as the venue accommodations.

  15. Bad Nirvana Cover Band Says:

    miner, if you’re still around. just listened to that 11/15/98 Mufreesboro ‘Ghost’

    $$$, wow.

  16. yematt Says:

    just finished watching the new episode of Dexter. going to be an interesting season for sure…

    re floor/seats at shows: there’s definitely an advantage of being up and far away for good sound and room to groove about. and the lights of course hit you better (i think, never been close except at portsmouth) but i gotta see what its like to be in the thick of things. atleast for a set…

  17. yematt Says:

    that murf ghost was a really fun listen yesterday. never heard it before. very grateful that this place is here. it’s like a never ending treasure box of gems. was just thinking the other day that i used to just pick and choose which shows to download based on what it looked like on “paper”.

  18. Mr. Completely Says:

    thanks for car adapter links @sumo etc

    maybe i am a bad person but i enjoy when a story like that gets greenboarded.

    “Wook #17 says:

    Who the fuck are the dirty projecters, brahs? Is they hetty shiz or what?”

    that’s funny. no it’s not helpful or productive, but…

    the most hilarious thing is a lot of phish fans would probably like the projectors based on the little bit I’ve heard

  19. Mr. Completely Says:

    I concur on both points 1 and 2 aqua

    was rocking the show in the car earlier and dug it so much I had the throw on the dvd of the Mike’s jam

    epic is a fair word

  20. Mr. Completely Says:

    BTW I hit the Island Roses again late last night, with me very high and it very loud, and the second half of the jam came together for me much more than it had before…very sweet

  21. budgrn Says:

    Ive lived in atlantic city area my whole life and have been wishin phish played their since i first saw them in 94 so this is a dream come true to have them play in my back yard. the boardwalk hall is awsome and these shows will be epic if uve never seen pics of yhe hall go to their websight and find the seat locater will give you view of stage from your section the place is sick and hopefully they bust out the orgen supposedly not only is it the biggest in the world its also the loudest instrument in the world you can read about it on their website.

  22. yematt Says:

    actually i didn’t just download at random all the time. i would DL shows that my brothers had been to. so one of the first shows i got was cypress. got slammed in the face right of the bat.

  23. Mr. Completely Says:

    “1 day 10hrs 40 min to Ryder Cup greatness.”

    greatness? what, are they playing football at the Ryder Cup now or something?

  24. yematt Says:

    C – did you ever check out the phish mash up that i made? it has a taste of the island roses funk in there

  25. sumodie Says:

    @yematt: GA shows out west tend not to be so frantically cramped up front as back east (at least, that’s been my experience)

    If you’ve never been upfront I highly recommend the experience at least once -hell, even if it is cramped. Just don’t get dehydrated!

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