Summer Additions?

7.3.11 (G.Lucas)

When Phish splashes into an open jam, the adventure is on, regardless of what song the jam stemmed from. But in 2011, a tighter rotation of regular jam vehicles caused a tad of predictability to ooze into shows. Though the music could obviously go any which way, we all knew when jams were coming based on song selection—except in of a handful of surprise instances. With such a wide array of untapped material this era, the diversification of jam vehicles could instantly bolster the excitement of summer tour. In no way longing for the past, I believe the following five jams could be reinvented as platforms into the future.


“A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing”

With only two improvisational versions in this era—Deer Creek ’09 and Super Ball IX—it’s a wonder Phish hasn’t further tapped the vast potential of this sinister jam. Like many great Phish jams, this one starts out with structured improv centered on a monster guitar solo, but once this sequence ends, the flood gates of possibilities open. Not prone to one style of playing or another, “A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing” could easily mold to whatever direction the band chooses this summer. At Super Ball, the band quickly integrated an ambient-storage style jam into the piece, and back at  SPAC ’04, they launched into a refined excursion in psych-rock. Thus, every time the opening of this song growls through the stacks, there is inherent mystery as to where it will go. Check out Super Ball’s version below.



“Halley’s Comet”

Nothing screams summer Phish like “Halley’s Comet” jams. Making its improvisational name for itself from 1997 onward, “Halley’s” is always a welcome addition to any show in summer months. And when the band used it to craft one 2011’s defining jams out of the piece in Bethel, many fans thought its improvisational prowess had finally been resurrected. But it wasn’t to be, as the song returned to its compact form after its New York state adventure. Though doubtful, it would be invigorating to hear “Halley’s” grooves grace the summer air once again in 2012. Here’s Bethel’s version.



“Scents and Subtle Sounds”

This song has been an enigma in this era after emerging as one of the band’s compelling vehicles the last time around. Played only three times in 3.0—primarily for bust-out purposes—Trey launched into a soaring and emotional solo in Denver that seemed to awaken the spirit of the song. If “Scents and Subtle Sounds” returns to regular rotation—whether used as an open or contained jam—a certain majesty will come right along with it, perfectly meshing with any summer evening. And if this ever does transpire, let’s hope the band brings the intro with it! The following is Super Ball’s version—with intro.



“AC/DC Bag”

“AC/DC Bag” turned a corner in 1997, with so many other songs, and became a legitimate platform for improv. Though never a guaranteed jam, for the next four years, the band took the song in countless directions, from UIC ‘98s drone/ambient psychedelia to Virginia Beach ‘98’s summer funk to Boise ‘99’s all-time spiritual excursion. The Gamehendge favorite hasn’t broken form in this era, which isn’t all that surprising, but if the band ever decided to toss a few “Bag” jams into the second set, things could get spicy quickly! Check out Virginia Beach ’98 below.



“Round Room”

Here’s a dark horse pick. Appearing only a handful of times in the post-hiatus era, the title track from Round Room could make an intriguing launch pad with the band members’ now-polished skill sets. Taken in layered, ambient directions back in ’03, this jam could benefit from the sound-sculpting acumen of Phish these days. I wonder, however, if “Round Room” is even still on their radar. Here’s the Gorge version from 2003.



What song’s would you like to be seen focused on this summer? Respond via Twitter with the hashtag #minertalk, or on the Facebook page! Or just post in comments below, but let’s hear what you think!

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800 Responses to “Summer Additions?”

  1. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:


  2. Multibeast Says:

    Question: I have access to tix to the Wooster shows. Was considering going to OKC. Have to decide between the two destinations. Which way would you go?

    Going to Blossom, AV and Dicks fer sure.

  3. angryjoggerz Says:

    Very interesting question. English is among the most difficult languages to learn in that it is a Romance language and has verb conjugation and has a multitude of rules that are then promptly broken.

    Many of the Asian languages are grammatically simple but are complicated in reading and writing and also may involve tones, which are hard to learn (as I am great evidence of).

    Maybe Arabic?

  4. Duder Says:

    don’t Punk out!

    Hit the theater!

  5. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    @punk, got the FLACs off of the noid

  6. Gavinsdad Says:

    @multi – I’d spread your legs. Ewww.

    Get some leg one and a taste close(r) to your home leg 2. This is me assuming that u live in CO.

  7. Multibeast Says:

    yep, live in CO and already have the guaranteed leg 1’s (Bloosom, AV). I am torn due to the Wooster shows being tour opener and being indoors. But I like the OKC show option. Could drive down with fellow BB’ers and could be a sleeper show….

  8. Guyute711 Says:

    Good day to hear Patchwork Quilt. Absolutely love the song, Thanks Jer and Warren.

  9. marcoesq Says:


    12.12.97 one of my favorite shows. 1st set Tweezers usually mean fire.

    I mean, c’mon!

    Set 2: Saw It Again[1] -> Piper[2] > Swept Away > Steep > Prince Caspian > Jam[3] -> Izabella, Tweezer Reprise

  10. RoosterPizza Says:

    @not tom

    An interesting but practically impossible question to answer. There are too many factors to take into consideration. What form of communication are we talking about? The pronunciation of a language may be easier than other languages while the orthographical nature of it may be considerably less logical (more difficult) than other languages.

    An L2 is easier or harder to learn depending on your L1. So, if everyone had to switch to one language, the success or learning the same L2 would vary greatly amongst speakers of the same L1, let alone separate L1s.

    If you just want to look at the logic of a language, this is interesting in thinking about how we can communicate. For example, Japanese speakers have single words to describe a whole setting while English speakers paint a picture with long winded descriptions loaded with adjectives and adverbs. Is less more, or is more less? Depends on your perception, and this is shaped by your L1. Interesting question.

  11. MiA Says:

    I’m going to OKC with Selector. Even if I have to kidnap him.

  12. MiA Says:

    Wow, double whammy. Appraised my house 15% higher and taxes (%) went up too.

    So Austin can keep to 1 cop per 500 people.

    Fuck the police.

  13. garretc Says:

    “I’m going to OKC with Selector. Even if I have to kidnap him.”

    Sounds like the plot of a great buddy road-trip comedy!

    “It all started when MiA kidnapped the Selector to force him to drive to OKC for a drug-fueled romp at a Phish show, but on the way the two sometime friends, sometime adversaries are forced, by the hilarious hijinks they encounter, to accept their similarities and leave behind the hard feelings created by the forced abduction, freeing them to have an experience they’ll always remember and that will leave them forever changed!”

    “Brought to you by Run-On Sentence Productions”

  14. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    out of curiosity, what’s your prop. tax rate down there, mia?

  15. Duder Says:

    fuck TX.

  16. alf Says:

    i’ll choose L2 for a thousand, alex

    with apologies to tela’s ongoing ‘do the zoo’ marketing campaign, if all else is equal, 2 shows are better than 1

    and since you’ve already got the tour closing run lined up (diffusing the argument of ‘they might be playing better in August’), i’d take the tour openers, indoors taboot, over a one off right before CO

    the summer tour book ends have worked out pretty well the last 2 years

  17. alf Says:

    plus, OKC is over 2 months after worcester. if the band is really on fire, methinks you could find a way to get to OKC even if you did worcester 2 months prior, no? lotsa time to save money, make arrangements, etc

  18. marcoesq Says:

    Not counting 3.0, Lemowheel least productive Phish fest?

  19. garretc Says:

    Coventry, homeslice

  20. MiA Says:

    A shitload T3. Almost 3% where I live. Some parts of Austin are 2.4%. Depends on schools, etc. We have arguably the best three elementary/middle schools in Austin though.

    I’ve met folks from both coasts that said they were paying $12k per child for private schools because they didn’t like the local school systems.

  21. Multibeast Says:

    Alf – sound advice. Thanks man. I think I’m goin the wooster route.

  22. Multibeast Says:

    RIP levon

    Fuckin bummer.

  23. Robear Says:

    What alf said @ Multi

  24. marcoesq Says:

    Sorry, discount 2.0 also. Meant just 1.0

  25. alf Says:

    what i meant to say was, cash for your woosta 2 extra!

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