The Last Great Tweezer (For A While)

Phish 2000 (Unk)

While Phish’s energy began to wind down during the second half of 2000, the year still boasted many bright musical highlights.  From Radio City, to clubs in Japan and back again, Phish threw down many significant jams in the year before their first hiatus.  One of the most memorable moments came on June 24th at Lakewood Amphitheatre, during the band’s third show back from Japan- only eight days removed from Osaka’s tour closer.   Following a bombastically improvised “Moma” opener, the band ran through “Runaway Jim” and “Bouncin'” before greeting the summer sunset with the growling opening licks of “Tweezer.”  What ensued for the next half-hour exists as one of the most magnificently improvised portions of Phish2k.

Taking daytime into night, Phish explored several musical feels, weaving them seamlessly into a tapestry of sound and groove. Phish was excited to be back in their summertime sheds, and they were celebrating their stateside return musically.  While Japan brought diverse venues and cultural experiences for the band, they were more than ready to return to their comfort zone- annihilating amphitheatres across the US.  And in only their fifth set back, they would unveil this unique masterpiece.

2000-06-24moAs the jam dropped, Mike immediately took the lead, generating a tight and heavy groove with Fish, as Page painted the backdrop.  Meanwhile, Trey set up some loops and sat back, awaiting the perfect entry point.  Upon joining the rhythmic fray, Trey began with a series of licks that fit perfectly into the preexisting patterns.  This driving, spacious funk characterized the initial part of this jam and led everyone through some addictive dance music as the sun dipped low.  Clicking right away, the band was off and running through a melange of engulfing crack-grooves.

Radio City 2000 (B. Stephens)

Radio City 2000 (B. Stephens)

As Gordon retained the lead for much of this initial segment, Trey gradually transformed his rhythm chops into a subtle melody that pushed the band to a divergent musical plane.  Soon the band’s playing picked up a certain motion, as all four members layered their offerings atop Gordon’s pillow.  Trey began climbing a melodic path that guided the band’s ascending improv.  As the rhythm shifted, it was clear that this “Tweezer” jam was going further than your average first- or second- set offering.

Continuing their upwards path, the band came together, moving the music outwards at the same time.  Further momentum sprouted as Phish passed into a third distinct musical canvas.  Adding urgency to the music, this section began to take a different shape, straying from the swamp funk that had sprung this journey.  Trey picked up a thematic pattern, and as usual, Fish picked up on Trey.  They both began to push the jam, resulting in a driving rhythm and melody that was purely Phish, not resembling its origins at all.  The band had transcended any semblance of a “Tweezer” jam and had launched into something far more grandiose in scope.

Chicago 2000

Chicago 2000

As the band hit this first peak, they took the time to settle the music back into a quickly-moving and straight-ahead groove that allowed them to collect their thoughts and determine their direction.  Trey soon picked a melody out of this groove, influencing his mates to alter their phrases to fit into the progressing puzzle.  Before long Phish had plunged into a spiritually uplifting section of music that grew directly from Trey’s original lines.  As the band brought this part to the top, they entered the true peak of this monster jam.  The entire band created a far more regal feeling to the music as Trey hit a fierce and emotional rolling melody.  From here, the band maintained this level of energy, careening past the peak into a denouement of lightning quick patterns.

Allowing their musical path to organically peak, Phish took time to wind the music back down to earth via slowed down bass lines, effects, and sonic residue.  After the triumphant arrival of this extended adventure, the band slid into the perfectly placed “Stange Design” to reorient the audience from their altered reality.  Although Phish would go on to play five more “Tweezers” before calling it quits, none would approach the magnitude of Lakewood’s first set epic.  For a couple of years, this one would hold the title of “The Last Great “Tweezer.””


Listen to 6.24.00 “Tweezer” Now! < LINK (Roll over, click play)




6.24.00 Lakewood Amp, Atlanta, GA < LINK

6.24.00 Lakewood Amp, Atlanta, GA < TORRENT LINK

phish-astron00Beyond the massive “Tweezer,” the first set really stole the show this evening. With a classic setlist and ripping jams, it was almost like the sets were reversed.  Nonetheless, the second frame boasts a ripping “Antelope” and solid versions of “Birds” and “Carini.”

I: The Moma Dance, Runaway Jim, Bouncing Around the Room, Tweezer > Strange Design, Cavern

II: Birds of a Feather, Bug, My Sweet One, Run Like an Antelope, Frankie Sez, Carini, The Squirming Coil, Prince Caspian

E: Guyute, The Inlaw Josie Wales, Driver, Tweezer Reprise

Source: Unknown



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138 Responses to “The Last Great Tweezer (For A While)”

  1. Jack O Roses Says:

    We bumped into Mike walking into our hotel at Hampton in 95. Love his playing, but weird dude, that Cactus. We walk in and lo and behold, there’s Trey, holding court in the hotel bar. Good times.

    Thanks Miner for this forum. You’ve done a great job, and it’s a great little community!!!

  2. Wilson Says:

    Miner, you’ve been hitting A LOT of shows I saw back in the day.
    ATL ’00 – Gorge ’07 – Walnut Creek ’95 – Deer Creek ’97 – etc….
    I remember thinking the ATL show had a real “fun” setlist with some hot tunes, but the total didn’t add up to much more than the sum of the parts, imho. Then, there was that DISASTER in Raleigh a few nights later. Simply the worst show i ever saw them play, period. I think this really was the point when Phish had hit their hit/miss phase. Some shows were dreadful (Raleigh ’00) and then there would be a mind-blower (the Polaris ’00 thunderstorm show still makes my head spin, would love to see a write-up on that sucker). 1999 was the same way: lame VA Beach show, following that smoking hot Charlotte show. They had truly become inconsistant. Didn’t see a lot of post hiatus shows, but they also seemed to run hot & cold. That’s why Hampton ’09 was so encouraging to me: really set the stage for solid, reliable, quality shows, which is what we had all come to expect by the mid 90’s. Lakewood was an ok venue, but man that neighborhood where the sent overphlow parking was a little sketchy.

  3. msbjivein Says:

    @Wilson, Polaris ‘oo was wild Man! Good call! I would love to read what MinER has to say about that one. A good Aud. link would be awsome also.

  4. msbjivein Says:

    @Wilson, I agree w/ that Raleigh show. I’ve always hated that fucking drive from ATL to Raleigh. SUCKS. Remember all the Swines at Raleigh??
    They were busting kids left and right. I think that was ’00……

  5. elbows Says:

    Man, Phish always threw down at Lakewood. I love that venue; chill, raging lots, the perfect alchemy of southern calm with Phish madness. Thanks, Miner, for reminding me of another killer jam I’d witnessed but long since forgot.

    Wilson: Man, that Raleigh 2000 was pretty weak, but I always thought it was just me. I was just so wiped out, couldn’t even dance. Just laid on the lawn all night staring at the stars. Of course, if I revisted it, I’m sure I’d find some gems. A bad Phish show is still a good night.

  6. Mr.Miner Says:

    “Then, there was that DISASTER in Raleigh a few nights later. Simply the worst show i ever saw them play, period.
    ^^ agreed, and I never say that!

    Though the “What’s the Use > Slave” to end the night was nice…

  7. Pence Says:

    @soulish it has to be a show, and make sure its a soundboard recording. I would suggest something older, as they tried to play more songs. 12-31-1991 possibly.

  8. Uberchef Says:

    Yes here here, thank you Mr. Miner for facilitating such an awesome place to be in the phish mindset.
    I can’t understand why Phantasy Tour has become such a horrible venue for discussion…I mean, I guess it’s been that way for as long as I can remember, but it really makes for a crappy environment.

  9. old dude Says:

    soulish request sounds like a job for …
    Miner’s Picks: Proof that Phish has Chops Vol. 1
    (target audience = ignorant and/or uninitiated)

  10. Uberchef Says:

    Ah, and I need to proclaim the virtue of the Lakewood 97 show…fresh back from Europe, they played a magnificent Ghost that night, and a YEM > Russian-like Vocal Jam > Rocky Mountain Way that was “read-icculus” 🙂 That expression is amazing btw, so props to whoever brought that to the table!

  11. Mr.Miner Says:

    its a lyric to the song….readicculus

  12. Mr.Miner Says:

    btw…someone got track 5, so its not impossible

  13. old dude Says:

    Look at her face tonight!

  14. voopa Says:


    A Live One/Nectar

  15. Uberchef Says:

    Ah, yes, it is a lyric indeed…children are now old enough to ridicule us. Seeing it scrawled out like that brings it all home!

  16. msbjivein Says:

    @Soulish, Amy’s Farm ’91 is freakin awsome! It has Giant Country Horns on there also. Being a sax player dude might dig it. I’m a musician and anytime I’ve played Phish for other musicians they might not get IT. But they always recognize the mad skills Phish has.

  17. Brimley Says:

    @Soulish-give your boy a copy of ALO and let him know that the two disc’s have a pretty good variety of what one might hear at a show…i would let him know that this was the way that the band sounded almost 15 years ago and they have a different sound now….

  18. Dr SF Jones Says:

    @soulish- I would agree with voopa. A Picture Of Nectar and A Live One are definitely 2 good choices. Maybe preface the introduction to A Live One with a word or two about the long ass Tweezer, but those were band choices for the 1st “official” live release. And there is no reason why you have to rule out any studio album. Nectar shows a ton of diversity and it is straight up awesome. If he doesn’t appreciate either of those 2 then fuck it, he’ll never get IT.

  19. Jay Says:

    I was also at the raleigh show. cops were very much present and in your face. Having to stealth drink your beer before the show. Funny thing, that was the first show where I got too drunk to dance.

  20. msbjivein Says:

    @Soulish, My bad there’s no Giant Country horns on Amy’s farm ’91. Dude of life sits in on”Crime of the mind”,Self, “She’s bitchin again”. Was listening last night and the YEM is one of thwe best ever I think. “No Gerbils in your bottom vocal” jam!!!

  21. msbjivein Says:

    Actually, There’s no “best ever” anything.

  22. Jay Says:

    right, right, that’s where the girbils in your butt vocal jam came from! Hilarious!!

  23. msbjivein Says:

    ^^Those tapes say “Giant Country Horns” But that must be a filler or something. Cause there not on ther.

  24. Jay Says:

    @soulish, I always thought Slip Stitch and Pass is a great live album to turn someone one to Phish. Also, ALO is very good. As for video, I would have to say disc 2 of the IT DVD. It fucking smokes and the camera work is surreal.

  25. Selector J Says:

    Ah yes, this Atlanta show is coming back to me slowly. I clearly remember the banter about My Sweet One/Dog Faced Boy and Mike’s ‘read-icculus’ fight bell.

    RE: “read-icculus” Miner’s right: Props be to Trey on that one. When I first started listening to Phish the Icculus thing went right over my head. It wasn’t until I was in college that I realized what was going on in that story. Gamehenge is a pretty blatant attack on organized religion. Even the Famous Mockingbird is a reference to the traditions that Christianity generously borrowed from. Just another reason why I think they’ll never do a Gamehenge show again. Bashing religion doesn’t have such a lasting appeal as you get older and start thinking more seriously about it.

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