TTFF: First Set Fire

6.26.10 (G.Lucas)

This Friday’s installment of Ten Tunes was inspired by Twitter banter between fans and fellow Phish bloggers throughout the week about the band’s most devastating first set jams. Though I didn’t want to repeat songs, I did bookend the playlist with “Bathtub Gin” (and a couple more could have easily made it as well). This list is hardly comprehensive as its comprised of only ten jams, but these are some of my favorite first setters in history. May these tunes assist you in your ticket-finding missions today and tomorrow! (And join the conversations—follow me @mrminer on Twitter!)


Bathtub Gin” 7.29.98

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

The Riverport “Gin” gets my vote for the best opener in history.

Download audio file (ph98-07-29d1t01.mp3)


Ghost” 11.17.97

And Denver’s “Ghost” from ’97 gets my vote for best first set jam in history; and can be in any sort of discussion about elite performances.

Download audio file (1.04-Ghost.mp3)


Tweezer” 6.24.00

10.31.10 II (G.Lucas)

10.31.10 II (G.Lucas)

Lakewood’s “Tweezer” from 2000 isn’t far behind; a top-shelf version through and through.

Download audio file (Tweezer.mp3)


Gumbo” 8.13.97

My favorite “Gumbo;” gooey summer funk followed by a melodic release in a “Franklin’s Tower”-esque jam.

Download audio file (ph970813d1t05.mp3)


Tube > Slave” 12.7.97

3.09 (J.Volckhausen)

Dayton’s set-ending combo needs no introduction.

Download audio file (1.07-Tube.mp3)
Download audio file (1.08-Slave-to-the-Traffic-Light.mp3)


Ya Mar” 8.2.03 IT

Phish often dove deep early in the show in 2003, and this “Ya Mar” from IT is but one example.

Download audio file (1.03-Ya-Mar.mp3)


Down With Disease” 12.11.97

12.30.2010 (G. Lucas)

A classic jam from Rochester ’97; hard rock into dripping brain candy.

Download audio file (ph1997-12-11d1t02.mp3)


Mike’s Song” 11.22.97

The opener from Hampton’s iconic show on 11.22.97.

Download audio file (ph1997-11-22d1t02.mp3)


Weekapaug” 4.3.98

8.10.10 (G.Lucas)

And The Island Run’s “Crosseyed” and “Mozambique”-laced “Weekapaug;” arguably its most impressive outing of all-time.

Download audio file (1.04-Weekapaug-Groove.mp3)


Bathtub Gin” 6.28.00

This shredfest from Summer 2000 at PNC is too fierce to leave off this list.

Download audio file (2000-06-28-Bathtub-Gin-PNC-Bank-Arts-Center-6-28-00-Holmdel-NJ.mp3)


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1,801 Responses to “TTFF: First Set Fire”

  1. DryIceFactory Says:

    Oops, wrong thread. Carry on.

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