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. poop goblin Says:

    yeah as much as I love the Phish Remain in the Light set

    if I feel like spinning it

    we will go Talking Heads vinyl

    never a day I feel like playing the Phish version instead
    as much of an amazing live experience as it was

  2. Guyute711 Says:

    I have RIL Talking Heads original on my itunes and actually hear parts of the Phish set on Jam Band channel through XM. XM does a good job of playing the stuff that is currently happening too.

  3. stash Says:

    What ittrigues me about the LF show, is that it ws a live album to begin with. By default, you’re goign to get the best of a band from that era/show/tour. I’d really like to see the boys be a band and just do what ever songs they want to do and in what order they see fit for the evening.

  4. Guyute711 Says:

    Phish, the new Dark Star Orchestra.

  5. Chuck D Says:

    some of you people just about missed IT.

  6. Kaveh Says:

    Phish, the new Dark Star Orchestra.

    ^ Good lord. 🙂 I suppose the vacuum is the Donna of this band too, right?

  7. Guyute711 Says:

    Good lord. I suppose the vacuum is the Donna of this band too, right?

    Sounds about right

  8. jdub Says:

    I wonder if the band includes couchers into their New Year’s prank.

    Like plan a blackout of MSG and play some music that sounds like a stream coming in and out while flashing the arena with strobes of light. Total mindfuck joke on the whole pirate stream deal.

    People will get their money’s worth.

  9. Chuck D Says:

    fish played the vacuum and ruined my set


    donna opened her mouth and ruined my set

  10. whole tour! Says:

    What if the dead just ended up keeping Donna on keyboards?

  11. whole tour! Says:

    the upcoming lunar eclipse + winter solstice combo is the first in 372 years. Would have made for an awesome all night festival set experience.

  12. lastwaltzer Says:

    “What if the dead just ended up keeping Donna on keyboards?”


  13. whole tour! Says:

    ^ that was a joke. lol

  14. gavinsdad Says:

    still wondering about the gas in the tank thing for 1/1/11. tho in the end this one might be the phishiest show of em all…and a Sat nite in NYC taboot.

  15. whole tour! Says:

    There was a question on facebook “Who do you like better: Donna or Vince?”
    That was my answer: what if they just kept donna on keys? Brilliant!

  16. lastwaltzer Says:


    my bet is big things are planned for 1/1. I think its gonna be a statement show of sorts, i’d bet on lots of 3.0 tunes and some big jams. Thats just a guess though………….

  17. lastwaltzer Says:

    plus the pressure is gonna be on for 31, shitty nye show in 2002, first nye @ the garden in 3.0, 15 anniversary of 12/31/95. etc

  18. jdub Says:

    @Gdad, 1/1/11 is a win-win celebration. Even if the show isn’t musicaly the best of the run it will be an incredible experience both closing a year and starting a new one at the same time. Fireworks are gonna happen, the non flameable kind.

  19. poop goblin Says:

    last show of the run

    with the energy of nye carrying over

    it will be electric as shit in there on the 1st IMO

  20. Snigglebeach Says:

    That 1/1/11 show might be the perfect place to drop the Gamehendge we have all been waiting for..

    Usually setlists build toward a NYE peak. Certain songs you will never, ever hear on the 30th (DWD YEM) That being said this year might be a bit different with that follow up show. All new songs first set, then a roof raising Gamehendge? At worst i would expect that to be a colaboration night.

    That show is the sleeper. the one every overlooked that reg phans will be kicking themselves for missing. its the Utica of Holiday tour…

  21. Aquaman Says:

    The only research I did on my Blu-Ray player was done in Best Buy. Since then I have been playing around really, and not much more.

    That said y’all should go check this out if you have an HDTV and a Wireless connection. I mean they are just giving this stuff away.

    Sony Blu-Ray player with wireless

    There are some reviews for it on newegg as well.


  22. Mr.Miner 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

    ^ i’d much rather listen to Phish versions of WfC or RiL…

  23. Leo Weaver Says:

    Hey Miner…did you get that email I sent you over the weekend re: Ting?

  24. Selector J Says:

    re: ting

    So this morning I was browsing the pharmacy aisle at my local grocery in search of some cold medicine when a brand’s name catches my eye…
    I then promptly offended the nice old lady pushing her cart with the following phrase:
    Holy @#$%! Ting cures athlete’s foot?

    Who knew?

  25. Leo Weaver Says:

    Regarding the PPV stream. I think it’s a brilliant move by the band. Will it reduce the number of shows I ultimately buy tickets for and go see? Nope, don’t think so. Does it take the sting out of not being able to go see some shows I’d really like to make it to but can’t? Yep, sure will.

    I’ve been bummed about not being able to make it up to NYC for this run…streaming capability has made it MUCH better to deal with. Gonna have a few BBers at the house with the shows cranked. Streaming F8 last year was a big fun time…this should be even better.

    I don’t understand the issues folks have with it, whatever their issue might be. I don’t mind paying a fee…AT ALL. $40 is easy…as long as the stream is good with minimal issues. I think it’s a great product and service they’re offering. My 1/50 of a buck.

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