Ten Tunes For Friday: Summer ’97


Summer 1997 (S.Nissman)

With summer on our minds this week with the announcement of Summer 20011 Leg I, this Friday we focus on Summer tour from fourteen years agoโ€”1997. Phish had just returned from Europe, where they funked out every song imaginable, beginning to hone their new playing style. When the pulled into Virginia Beach on July 21 to kick off their US tour, they were a well-oiled groove machine that was ready for business. Here are some of my favorites selections from a transformative summer tour that criss-crossed the nation.


Down with Disease > Mike’s > Simple” 7.22

One of the most adventurous jam sequences of the summer from Walnut Creek, with, arguably, the best segue ever executed in band history.



Run Like An Antelope” 7.29 II

A fierce rendition from Desert Sky in Phoenix.



Cities > GTBT”ย  8.10 II

The Cornfields

My favorite jam of the summer when tour ended, and still right up there with the best of the best of Summer ’97.



Gumbo” 8.13 I

This is, perhaps, the most liquid “Gumbo” ever played, including some of the danciest music of the summer and a legitimate nod to “Franklin’s Tower” towards the end of the jam. My personal favorite, I don’t think any version even approaches this one.



Harry Hood > jam” 8.14 II

Darien Lake

This version from Darien Lake gets my vote for the “Hood” of Summer ’97โ€”and there were more than a few gems. And that is not even considering the sublime jam that oozed from the song’s peak; some of the most intricate interplay you’ll ever hear.



Wolfman’s > Simple 8.16 II

One of the defining jam sequences of the Great Went.



Tweezer” 8.17 I

One of only two “Tweezers” in a massive US tour (the other came at The Gorge), this version dropped on the final day of tour in the Great Went’s afternoon set.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/ph1997-08-17d1t08.mp3] Tags: ,

855 Responses to “Ten Tunes For Friday: Summer ’97”

  1. KWL Says:

    today’s ttff is certifiably bad ass. thanks miner.

  2. AintNoTele Says:

    Stamp it, I will rock out at work and it WILL be good. I’m flying solo and have the lab to myself. Mice love the funk

  3. Corey Says:

    @nonoyolker, thanks. Managed to do it on a college budget too. Kind of wonder how that trip could’ve been like on a professional budget. You know, hotels and stuff…
    It was a great experience. I remember thinking that I’d only get to do it once. Turns out I was right. Still, drove west for shoreline/gorge in 09 and the Greek last year.

    They’ll never take the adventure outta me.

    So, forgive my rolling eyes upon hearing that a show is too far away. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Jtran Says:


    Awesome story re: Tweezer

    Gonna spin that first with those images in my head

  5. albert walker Says:

    love it Corey

    I did the drive from Chicago to Phoenix up the coast through the Gorge and back through the midwest but we had 2 drivers. good times. great run.

    plane cancellation forced me to do the Chicago to New York straight through drive solo cuz my girl doesn’t drive and was passed out in the bax on xanax. made it no problem and hit night 1 without sleep. didn’t know I still had it in me.

    old school style right there.

  6. albert walker Says:

    new years 2010 did the drive to New York that is

  7. AintNoTele Says:

    The summer vibe just seeps out of these shows. Sooo close!

  8. Monsterpus Says:

    I remember them hitting the stage at Va Beach for the 1st show of summer, hearing The Funk, and thinking ‘what what whaaat?’ Just shows how different times were then, pre-internets. Now we would’ve been familiar with the new style long before the show

  9. Jtran Says:

    It must’ve been real weird monsterpus. Can only imagine.

  10. Admiral Ackbar Says:

    Pfft. Cross-country, schmoss-country.

    Han did the Kessell run in less than twelve parsecs.

  11. SillyWilly Says:

    perfect, Admiral.

  12. Mr. Palmer Says:

    AW= David silver.

  13. butterflyeffect Says:

    And I walked downtown yesterday in twelve blocks.

  14. SillyWilly Says:


    12? damn.

    10’s my limit.

    youre crazy.

  15. st8 of mind Says:

    That Hood is crazy. Trey caught fire.

  16. Guyute711 Says:

    Joaquin Phoenix=Bizzaro David Silver
    What ever happened to BAG?

  17. butterflyeffect Says:

    I am scary fast

  18. vegas wolfmans Says:

    “with, arguably, the best segue ever executed in band history.” -Miner

    Word. 14 years later and it still blows my freaking mind every single time I listen to it.

  19. Jtran Says:


    start for me. Hard to decide where to go next. I think back to the Went for Wolfman’s

  20. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    I recall the exact same feeling in Va Beach. nothing like not knowing any of the first four songs of the show. but then that James Brown Gin dropped and everything started making more sense.

  21. Corey Says:

    @albert walker, merit badge(s) earned. Is it messed up to hold out on the shows here in the east, in order to max out on the possible shows out west? Gluttons for trav’lin punishment are we…

    @Monsterpus, a little mystery and wonder is in fact lost these days. Everything’s accessible in an instant, or least that’s how it can feel sometimes. I remember reading the digest on them there green cursored computer boxes.

    I also miss filling out an order form like keeping score in bowling. Seriously, some things are more fun without computers.

  22. BingosBrother Says:

    Tiffany Amber-Thiessen will forever be my girl. 90210 4 Lyphe.

  23. Jtran Says:


    What were the first 4 songs that opened VA Beach? Ghost I think, what else?

  24. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:


    ghost>dogs stole things>piper, dirt

  25. Corey Says:

    ^han didn’t drive a dodge grand caravan with no air conditioning, a busted spedometer, lack of bright lights and a big bag of the best greenery ky could produce.

    13000+miles in 27days on the hot hot asphalt trumps any light-speed cruising holiday in space with a princess. ๐Ÿ™‚

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