The Webcast Arrives

10.30.10 - (Dave Lavery)

Almost two years since their fan base called for simulcasts of their Hampton reunion shows — some of the toughest tickets in history — Phish has finally answered them, offering live pay-per-view webcasts of their upcoming, sold-out shows at Madison Square Garden. Easing the pain for thousands of fans around the world who can’t make it to the Big Apple, everyone will be able to listen and watch the climactic New Year’s celebration as it unfolds over three nights.

Without packaging downloads with the webcasts, Phish is creating a completely separate revenue stream selling online access to their shows with little extra effort from their crew. In a win-win situation for all, people will surely gather for listening parties and the price of $15.99 per show ($19.99 for NYE) will dissolve into nothing once a few friends come over to share in the groove. Much like “No Spoilers” listening parties popped up around the nation for Hampton’s comeback, now real-time, New Year’s parties are sure to materialize — with soundboard feeds, nonetheless! Upping the ante for all fans with other plans this holiday season, I wonder how many people have now canceled their New Year’s Eve plans to virtually rage it with Phish?

NYE 1998 - MSG

Revolutionizing “couch tour” for these MSG shows, the question that now begs to be answered is — “Will webcasts be the norm moving forward?” Is this the future of Phish tour? Several community members have already offered free and illegal live streams of every Phish show this year, though the quality of these feeds have, allegedly, varied from unwatchable to fairly perfect. Might this move be the band’s response to their fan base’s successful pirating efforts? If continued on conventional tours, people would be more apt to order shows individually, at home, potentially increasing total sales. This next step would seem logical. With all shows already videotaped for the archives, this service can’t add much additional cost to the organization whether webcast receives fixed or multi-camera shots. Regardless of what type of video is offered, Phish just made a huge step forward in allowing their entire community to share in the holiday season. For the first time in history, major shows will accessible — live — by anyone, anywhere in the world. An unquestionably epic move.

10.20.10 (M. Stein)

But with this move, many questions follow. Is this service just being offered for the New Year’s extravaganza? Will Phish webcast every show from now on? Will they only webcast sold-out shows in the future like the NFL? Could this really be the “couch tour” of the future? Though they are certainly not a substitute for the live experience, would webcasts actually deter some people from making insane trips to see Phish — something that has always been part and parcel of the addiction? While webcasts would, inevitably, involve more people in any given show, would they somehow devalue the experience? Would college students and beyond choose bong hits and surround sound over paying for, and trekking to, shows? If this is even a possibility, what is the implication of having access to something sacred from the couch? Is some of the mystique stripped away if fans anywhere can flip on the Phish show for a small fee, just as they flip on any pay-per-view movie or boxing fight? The questions go on and on…What do you think?


Jam of the Day:

Ghost > Ha Ha Ha” 12.31.98 I

Another moment of MSG New Year’s Eve history.




5.2.1994 Five Points Music Hall. Birmingham, Alabama

Mp3 Torrent, Megaupload < Links

Here’s a random stocking stuffer for your collection, straight from the deep south in 1994. Phish concluded this show with “Mike’s Song” featuring two guest bass players — Oteil Burbridge and Stacy Starkweather. Enjoy!

I: The Great Gig in the Sky > Split Open and Melt, Bouncing Around the Room, Down with Disease, It’s Ice, Glide, The Divided Sky, Suzy Greenberg, Foam, Sample in a Jar

II: Runaway Jim, Mound, Reba, Golgi Apparatus, The Lizards, Julius, Lawn Boy, Mike’s Song* > Jam**

E: Cavern

*Oteil Burbridge on bass.
**Oteil Burbridge on bass and Stacy Starkweather on stand-up bass. Band members switched instruments.

Source: AKG 460

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464 Responses to “The Webcast Arrives”

  1. EL Duderino Says:

    he’s referring to the dvd LW

  2. EL Duderino Says:

    the Mango is always the slop apparently

  3. EL Duderino Says:

    If Trey can’t pull off Mango we certainly are not gonna get a Glide anytime soon huh?

  4. Guyute711 Says:

    OK that was todays article.

    What is it about the human brain that allows you to hear a song for the first time in, oh, 20 years, and after five or six seconds, know every word to the song? Or is it just my brain that does this? Had the car radio on Sirius 60s on 6, and the first few bars of a song I used to love in sixth grade, “Spooky,” comes on. And right away, I blurt out with the music, “In the cool of the evening when everything is getting’ kinda groovy, I call you up and ask you if you’d like to go with me and see a movie … ” I wish some smart brain student could tell me how that happens — and then how I cannot remember a factoid from last week.”

  5. KfL Says:

    i’ve been waiting for all things reconsidered. think i got a chance?

  6. Guyute711 Says:

    That Alpharetta weekend nailed quite a bit of the stuff I was waiting to see. I think I saw around ten songs that I hadn’t seen in 40 shows or more. Now I can just relax and enjoy the shows in the moment without stressing about seeing bustout type stuff. Love this new golden age.

  7. lastwaltzer Says:


    i think the problem is he doesn’t practice that one and takes for granted that muscle memory will kick in. Too bad really cause its one of my favorite tunes.

  8. whole tour! Says:

    ditto on alpharetta. Saw about 15 tunes i had never seen before in like 30+ shows that weekend including Raleigh and Charlotte too.

  9. EL Duderino Says:

    variety is the spice of life

  10. EL Duderino Says:

    Muscle memory = perfect way to describe it. I’m guilty of that on the guitar as well

  11. Guyute711 Says:

    The south finally did rise again. It just happened to take Phish to make it happen in 2010.

  12. EL Duderino Says:

    I feel fortunate that I’m in a place in the U.S. where I can see great Phish with relative ease like in Chicago

  13. EL Duderino Says:

    …and it might even be a little easier/closer too

  14. poop goblin Says:

    I Have been chasing that 2001, Bowie, and Stash from AC for 40+ 3.0shows

    I’m do a monster tweezer also. Miami is still on the top of my favorite 3.0 jams lists but we’re are do a game changer it seems.

    and I really think Ghost needs to get a monster treatment. Brim although lacking in coherence had some real nice open jammed moments

    loved the Toyota Ghost and the Miami is very creative but we need to blow this one up again.

    safe to say we could all use a great version of Waves also

  15. EL Duderino Says:

    back to AC for a sec. I’m more apt to put on a LF show/album more than I am to put on the costume set.

  16. whole tour! Says:

    Tunes i had never seen before the last 6 shows i saw:

    Time loves a hero
    Have mercy
    Buried alive
    20 years later
    Fuck your face
    Destiny Unbound
    Forbins >
    Camel Walk
    My Friend, My Friend
    Killing in the name of
    Buffaol Bill
    My Problem Right there
    Pebbles and Marbles
    Show of Life
    Quinn the Eskimo
    I’ve been around

    I’d say they are certainly mixing things up and dropping the gems in greater frequency than ever before.

  17. Selector J Says:

    The MSG-cast is pure, uncirculated, cash mf’n $$$. If you’re complaining… you’re nuts.

    There was never a chance for me to go to these shows and now I get to watch uninterrupted live Phish at MSG for 3 nights and it costs me less than what Long Term parking would have been??

    C’mon, man! It’s the next best thing to being there and some of us can’t go so yea it sucks to be us… but now it sucks a whole lot less.

    For future tours, I don’t think they’ll do this for every show of tour and if they do, I imagine the price comes down a tiny bit ($15 times 20, or so, shows in a month adds up pretty quick).

    I hope they do it a lot more, though, especially for tough ticket shows like RCMH, Roseland, Fox, Greek, Red Rocks, Telluride, etc.

    I’d be down with an audio only stream for every show of tour. Put that at like $5/show… @5000 listeners/night*… that’s real money. Who knows? The live stream could really take off. If they built up the base so that it hit 20K-30K listeners/night… that’s REAL money.

    *based on the ustream numbers and I think that’s a touch conservative especially if the price is right.

  18. EL Duderino Says:

    more people will do it it if the quality is there

  19. poop goblin Says:

    that’s how all the Costumes are usually if you weren’t there el dude

    I don’t listen to any of them. more of a live experience

    but of the one’s I saw live. for live fun experience. I’d rank

    Talking Heads
    Little Feat

    didn’t see White Album

    Fat Man in a Bathtub and Spanish Moon were 2 of the slickest songs I’ve ever caught Phish play

    amazing night

  20. EL Duderino Says:

    I concure AW.

    White Album will always be my favorite for the experience

  21. Guyute711 Says:

    Nothing beats that TH set poop. The earth shifted on it’s axis that night.

  22. stash Says:


    I would trek over to radio shack. They shoudl be able to help you figure out the connections and adapter and cables. I always find odd little things in there. Like the slide/switch thing for the old Atari systems.

  23. poop goblin Says:

    I was upside down the whole set so that helps

    by the time Feats Don’t Fail me now was finishing I was still dancing my ass off to Fish’s cymbal work. spun cookie.

    set felt like it was 15 minutes long

    just such a great feel good, dance your ass off party record

  24. lastwaltzer Says:

    “back to AC for a sec. I’m more apt to put on a LF show/album more than I am to put on the costume set.” el dude

    when has this not been true?

  25. Stupendous Says:

    couldnt agree more @ Poop with your order of costumes

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