Reader’s Picks: Jeff D’Alonzo

The Storage Jam Brian ferguson

The Storage Jam (Brian Ferguson)

All selections and text by Jeff D’Alonzo

A disclaimer. I love trey and i love jams that exude emotion. Tried to do a combo of relatively unknowns and monsters, but thanks to Miner and this ridiculous community, there aren’t really any unknowns.

Carini” 2.17.97 II, Amsterdam, NL

Thank the dude who remastered this show. It’s my belief that this show changed the game. The winter Europe tour started off strong, new style being developed and whatnot. The night prior, 2.16.97 took it a little further. However, this show, specifically this “Carini,” is where it went down. Coming out of the gate dirty, the band connected and went straight into that funky psychedelic vibe that is everywhere in ’97. There is really solid playing by everyone throughout the jam, but what makes it, is the ending. The last 4 minutes is the blissiest piece of bliss every made. Utter beauty and flowing with a peak that is the definition of gorgeous. I just blissed my pants.



Antelope” 5.16.94 II, Los Angeles, CA

Pretty sure the only people that knew about this one, were the people at the show until this set popped up on etree, i guess 4 or 5 years ago, it was the last missing link to my 1994 collection. Lo and behold I saw a 20 minute “Antelope.” Popped it on and the rest is history. The jam after the “BBFCFM” nonsense is one the most beautiful pieces of Phish music ever made. Trey leads a melodic build up that makes me shiver with emotion. Not really sure how to explain it, heart wrenching glory I guess.



Ghost” 6.15.00 I, Osaka, JP

I went through a month phase where I listened to this “Ghost” three times a day. Perfect driving music. Fishman is a god here and Trey follows his lead all the way through. Two jams, both brilliant, leading to a groove laced peak towards the end. Kids were lucky to be in Japan for this one.



Bathtub Gin” 2.14.03 I, Los Angeles, CA

A personal favorite of mine. The only song on my list that i was present for. It seems like tour openers always have a big jam. The “Gin” is it. The whole winter tour was laced with huge “Gins.” But i like this version the best. Trey is a monster during this one. Funky, dirty, grooving, crushing. Pick whatever adjective, maybe Miner can help me. This jam is just amazing. Throw down city.



Bathtub Gin” 9.12.99 I, Portland, OR

When I discovered this jam randomly back in the day, I was floored. Hadn’t really read about it anywhere or heard any mention, prolly overshadowed by the “Ghost” from the same show. But this jam rules. It’s a perfect summer show jam, sunset, all that jazz. As my buddy Shin likes to say, a straight candy raver. It’s just a really bouncy and happy version with a beautiful groove.



Tweezer” 6.9.00 II, Tokyo, JP

Japan 2000 is arguably their best “jams” tour. So many heavy hitters. This one is probably the biggest. This “Tweezer” starts off cool, really laid back and patient. Gets a tad lost in the middle but then around the 18:00 mark,
everything in the world makes sense. So patient, all four of them finding their way. Both dirty and pristine, this ending jam is one for the ages, complete perfection.



Mike’s Song” 11.7.98 I, Chicago, IL

My favorite “Mike’s” ever. First jam is solid, well played and energetic. Then comes jam two, an absolute blissful beast. I love every kind of Phish, acidy experimentation, deep swamp funk, methjazz, etc. I love it all. But what really gets me is the bliss. And the second mikes jam from UIC is one of the blissiest. And also being a complete Trey whore, i love it, and this jam has IT.



Ghost” 7.12.03 II, George, WA

Post hiatus fire. Trey tone is in full effect. Another grooving shred fest, starts off really smooth and elegant. 10:50 mark on is why I go to shows. One of those moments when all you can do is smile at the fact that you got to listen to the greatest band on the planet do their thing.



AC/DC Bag” 11.7.98 II, Chicago, IL

Everyone knows this one but I don’t care. ’98 is prolly their best year all around, imo. The ambient shit brought things to a whole other level. This monster has complete experimental psychedelic ambiance all over the place. Whatever that means. I don’t condone drug use, but if you decide to indulge, put this on and listen to the whole thing.



Mike’s Song” 11.21.95 II, Winston-Salem, NC

My friend Cheryl turned me on to the jam a couple years ago. Not the best “Mike’s,” but a personal favorite. First jam is typical ’95, rocking, Page and Fish owning. But again, the second jam is what i crave. It starts off spotty and confused but towards the end turns into another bliss fed gem. Trey takes control and plays a slow melody that cuts to my core. Beauty.

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316 Responses to “Reader’s Picks: Jeff D’Alonzo”

  1. MiA Says:

    Have a buddy that went to a ton of dead shows in the 90’s. Well, at least he tells everyone that. He really really wants to tell everyone he saw 300 shows.

    Anyway, he was notorious for being a first set skipper. We would be hanging in a Phish lot, and he’d say “Fuck this. First sets are boring. We’ll just show up second set. Don’t waste your time. Do another balloon and have a beer”

    Maybe true about some Dead shows in the 90’s. I always abandoned him and went in on my own to his complaints.

    Remember them thrashing that Gin in St. Louis/Riverport, and watching fans still walking in the gates even into the Fikus and Farmhouse. Guy roles up next to me and asks the set list. I tell him. He says “Fuck Fikus and Farmhouse. I didn’t miss anything.”

    Phish needs to kick it square in the balls first songs, first set more often.

  2. butter Says:

    Jtran – Follow them on Twitter.

    My bro went to six of the West Coast shows and paid $85 each night.

    Walked up to the Vegas ticket booth 2 PM day of show and bought an $85 ticket

  3. MiA Says:

    Playing Riverport Buried Alive in honor…

  4. Mr. Palmer Says:

    I will know that my Phish days are coming to a grinding halt when R. Kelly becomes a viable alternate option….

  5. tela'smuff Says:

    i actually enjoyed quite a few first sets this year for shows i hit.

    Cincy – second best 1st set of ’12? loved it.
    both DeerCreeks
    AV were well constructed first sets – Fee, Lonesome Cowboy Bill, Timber, Let it Loose
    Dicks1 and even Dicks 2 wasn’t bad.

    but yeah, they need to spice it up.

  6. marcoesq Says:

    MPP2 ’11 was pretty decent 1st set. PNC ’11 had some good 1st sets also

  7. MiA Says:

    Totally agree Tela’s. Dicks 1 first set was great too. Was going to mention the Cincy set too. Liked Star Lakes also, but nothing “groundbreaking” in there but wasn’t that the first YEM of the tour?

  8. alf Says:

    happy 47th birthday pet sounds

    free CHANCE show in chi town tomorrow

  9. roberto luongo Says:

    DIck’s 1 set I is better than 90% of the second sets of 3.0

    def the exception though. haven’t caught a set I even close to that.

  10. roberto luongo Says:

    maybe set I night I and II of Bethel and Cinci 2012 would be the other 3 I really dug.

    one of the SBIX set I’s I think was decent?

  11. tela'smuff Says:

    yeah, Dicks1 was best first set of 3.0 clearly. i actually liked that Pitt set as well. yeah, it was the first YEM, but typical 3.0 YEM. still, set had flow.

  12. marcoesq Says:

    ya 1st YEM of tour at star lake. Funky bitch>#line opener was yawnfest though. SOAMule kinda cool

  13. roberto luongo Says:

    the S set from Dick’s flows great too IMO.

    spin that one all the time.

  14. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    The poster for the chance show tomorrow is slick

  15. tela'smuff Says:

    that Sally>Sparks is a gem!

    no question you could piece together a list of 3.0 first sets that are well above average, for sure a rarity on a tour though. Bethel 1 and 2 both excellent.

    Chucktown 2 and Utica both really fun first sets. Chucktown 2 was fire.

  16. Oool Ington Says:

    Ton Dalonz Kruger…. Solid picks. Japan Tweeze & Ghost are so ill… Shoulda laid down the Jim as well…. But big fan of many of your selections.

  17. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    kinda shocked no one has posted any links to this yet

    I knew it would pay off!

  18. Guyute711 Says:

    Video #1, must see tv. Whoa!!!

  19. Guyute711 Says:

    Video #2, Dabs.

  20. MiA Says:

    hard to understand that kid through his braces.

  21. BNCB Says:

    Agree on needing more from the first sets. Cities needs a longer jam than the pause in Divided Sky or I’m calling bullocks!

    Also think the big jams of 4.0 really tell a story. Like the band and fans sharing bits of life; past, present and future. Listen to the Long Beach Rock n Roll. It’s like a tale being told. Where was Fishmans’ head, when he singing ‘Roggae’ underneath everything? Deep stuff.

  22. Guyute711 Says:

    He’s faded yo.

  23. BNCB Says:

    RL, where’s the link to this latest free mixtape? just got back to the high speeds.

  24. MiA Says:

    Sad I am watching other people get high on video. Had I done those three I’d be obliterated.

    “cause the der’s dog and there’s everything thatssss……”

  25. MiA Says:

    “We’re making memories, then we are erasing them…”

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