A Tradition Like None Other

12.31.2010 - MSG (Ryan Gilbertie)

Confirming what fans had been assuming for some time, yesterday, Phish officially announced a four-night New Year’s Run at Madison Square Garden to close out 2011 in style! All other rumors had died out in recent weeks and it became a foregone conclusion that the band would return to the Big Apple, upping their career tally to 23 shows—all but 5 on holiday runs—at “The World’s Most Famous Arena.”

Historically, Phish and MSG have made quite the combustible holiday combination. In 1994, the band first stopped at 33rd St and 8th Ave on December 30th, on their way to Boston for Tropical New Year’s Eve. The following year, 1995, Phish came back to The Garden for two nights to close the year, with 12.31.95 being the peak of an era and, arguably, the best show Phish has ever played in The Garden.

12.31.10 (G.Estreich)

Come 1996, Phish stopped at MSG for a two-night stand during the opening leg of Fall tour (10/21,10/22). Though the second show contained a well-crafted setlist and a couple legitimate highlights, the tour didn’t really pick up steam until after Halloween at The Omni. The band skipped The Garden on the Holiday Run in ’96, favoring two nights in both Philadelphia and Boston, before coming back for an unprecedented three nights to close out their stellar year of 1997.

Punctuating Phish’s transformational and creative year of ’97, these three shows—the first of which is one of the outstanding shows of the late ‘90s—made the bond between Phish and Madison Square Garden permanent and inseparable. But if three shows in one building set a new standard for a New Year’s Run, the following year the band returned to The Garden a four-night Holiday Run—a spectacular stand through and through, and the most accomplished Holiday Run since 1995. All four shows popped off in 1998, with the 30th lagging only a slight bit behind. For four straight nights, Phish ran shop at Madison Square Garden, finishing with 12.31.98—the band’s most impressive New Year’s Eve performance since ’95.

Madison Square Garden

Phish, however, wouldn’t return to the building in its last two years of pre-hiatus existence. But when they came back on New Year’s Eve in 2002, there was only one place to do it—The Garden. Though the show, musically, wasn’t all that special, the mere fact that Phish chose their New York home for their return added to the venue’s already storied legacy. But in their short second go-round, their comeback show would be the only 2.0 performance in the round room.

When the band returned for this era, they chose the only other venue that made any sense for the reunion—Hampton Coliseum. But it wouldn’t be long before Phish made it back to The Garden in 2009, for three high-quality shows in the Fall of ’09. Three more at the end of 2010 brings us to now.

It seems only fitting that Phish will return to MSG to celebrate the holidays at the end of their most accomplished year of this era. With no fall tour, these shows represent a standalone oasis amidst a lot of time off. The band has said that 2012 will be a light year of touring, thus nobody knows when the following shows will come. But with four nights in New York City to end the year, nothing could be finer in the world of Phish.

The ticket request period is now open until October 24th. Best of luck in the lottery!

12.4.09 - MSG (Wendy Rogell)


Jam of the Day:

Tweezer -> Cities” 12.31.98 II

The centerpiece of set two on New Year’s Eve 1998.




12.31.1998 Madison Square Garden, NYC < FLAC Torrent (via etree)

12.31.1998 Madison Square Garden, NYC < Megaupload


I: 1999* > Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove, Ghost -> Ha Ha Ha > Cavern

II: NICU, Character Zero > Tweezer -> Cities > Wading in the Velvet Sea, Run Like an Antelope > Frankenstein

III: Runaway Jim -> Auld Lang Syne -> Simple, Harry Hood > Tweezer Reprise, Llama

E: While My Guitar Gently Weeps

*debut, Prince

Source: Schoeps mk41v’s(DIN)>kc5>m222>nt222>744t

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706 Responses to “A Tradition Like None Other”

  1. Michael Kang Says:

    Go Fishman!

  2. stapes Says:

    Good for Henrietta!

  3. Mr. Palmer Says:

    completely unintentional Kaya. There was still a 2-1 guy to gal ratio but the quality of gal was a much higher level than i am used to at our scene. Not counting the lovely BB ladies that occasionally post, of course. They are all striking…

  4. kayatosh Says:

    well done, brother.

    and go fishman.

  5. garretc Says:

    Love how that article doesn’t even mention Mr. Fishman’s career

  6. kayatosh Says:

    up there, he’s just Jon.

  7. Mr. Palmer Says:

    Put a tix request in. will drop one more in a week.

  8. Mike in Austin Says:

    Holding guard on TT right now.

  9. EL Duderino Says:

    Asheville TAB sbd up @ the ‘nerd fwiw

  10. Mike in Austin Says:

    Small Farmers Journal

  11. stapes Says:

    Jon knows what’s up.

    Gordon 2012.

  12. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    ok, this looks cool. I’d be down with these becoming a widespread thing if it helps how it could. keep you eye out for this company…

  13. Kurt from Indy Says:

    hey, its one order per CC # right?, so even if the names and billing addresses are the same you can do multi orders w dif cards??? or no?

  14. garretc Says:


    I was under the impression that you can’t do 2 cards with the same name, but address is fine

  15. Mr. Palmer Says:

    Think GC is right.

    I usually leave the billing address the same, but name on card is different( wife) ,and a different email address.

  16. Kurt from Indy Says:

    yea thats what i seem to remeber reading, but i know several people (on here i believe) have done a bunch of requests and id just assumed that they couldnt have that many dif names….but i dont know, ig uess i could hit up my mom, she scored me hampton tix, but when she got in on the tahoe tix for me she accidently hit the back button, either way she has a way w phish tickets

  17. Gratefulcub Says:

    I don’t know Palmer. The blond chic in stilettos and not much else that spent the second set dry humping her douchebag boytoy three feet in front of me lacked quality. She was probably hot, and I’m not a prude, but C’mon!! Time and place appropriateness people. Even her dad calls her a skank.

  18. EL Duderino Says:

    different cc’s with different names but same addy is AOK

  19. EL Duderino Says:

    lolz Cub!

  20. garretc Says:

    “She was probably hot, and I’m not a prude, but C’mon!! Time and place appropriateness people. Even her dad calls her a skank.”

    Wow, the rapidity with which you contradicted yourself is whiplash inducing!



  21. Kurt from Indy Says:

    ok, stupid question: what does LLFA mean?

  22. garretc Says:

    Think Sparkle, Kurt

  23. Mr. Palmer Says:

    Yeah, that was gross.

    ” They are absolutely killing me! ” – G cub 10.12.11

  24. Kurt from Indy Says:

    oh, thanks…. does that mean a SOAMelt is coming up later?

  25. Kurt from Indy Says:

    also the last several days have been soooo beautiful here in indiana, and ive had that ….i wanna say 7.28.98 gin, on my mind, and imo the closest thing to coming to a phish concert is driving in the car on some back country road while the 4-5p sun is peckering shaddows through the already colored leaves of the trees, and then in about 10min or so, trey srarts that pure bliss note modal…. best thing ever i need to do it ever season at least once…

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