Ten Tunes for Friday

12.30.09 (W.Rogell)

12.30.09 (W.Rogell)

To take you through this Friday, I have created a ten-song playlist that you can listen to on the site and download. Click each individual orange track title to download the song; take all or some, it’s up to you. Enjoy!


Ghost” 8.16.98 II Lemonwheel, Limestone, ME

Phish’s 1998 ambient experimentation began to emerge at their summer-emding festival. Taking a step away from pure-funk, the band started to infuse a more amorphous quality to their music, a development you can hear in its genesis via this “Ghost.” Phish capped a summer of decidedly funky episodes something distinctly different.



Free” 12.15.99 II MCI Center, Washington, DC

Towards the end of, arguably, “Free’s” most exploratory year, Phish threw down a defining version of the song in the middle of the second set in Washington, DC. Showcasing some of Trey’s most creative work on his late ’99 keyboard, he hopped off guitar for a good portion of this jam playing sparse, yet engaging hooks. Then he slung his axe back over his shoulder and took this jam to the top; an upper-echelon version by anyone’s standard.


12.29.09 (W.Rogell)


Split” 11.6.98 I Kohl Center, Madison, WI

This well-known version of “Split” is famous for one reason – an insanely tight groove session. Absolutely locked together, the band shredded this first set closer to pieces. Not experimental, but staying on a driving course of menacing momentum, this version provided the jaw-dropping moment of the evening. Mike has called this jam one of his favorite moments from Fall ’98.



Wolfman’s Brother” 11.13.98 I CSU, Cleveland, OH

An oft forgotten version buried in a lackluster show, this “Wolfman’s” is – straight up – the bees knees. Boasting addictive dino-funk and a pronounced “Mind Left Body” segment, this dark horse is a personal go-to version. Enjoy reacquainting yourselves with one of the hottest versions around.



Reba” 12.29.09 I AAA, Miami, FL

A simply sublime version of  “Reba,” soars gently through musical peaks and valleys on a stellar flight above a blissful sea of awareness. A dynamic mixture of delicate playing and liquid grooves, this jam rolls like water gently over a river bed.



12.30.09 (W.Rogell)

Scents and Subtle Sounds” Deer Creek 7.23.03 Deer Creek I

…And sometimes Phish opens with twenty-minute jams; gotta love ’03. One of three extended “Scents” during this summer tour, the band began their third and final night at Deer Creek with one of the song’s defining performances. As the song finally dropped at MSG last fall, here’s to some more summer explorations of post-hiatus’ most interstellar vehicle. (Apologies for the low bit rate on this track.)



Waves” 8.2.03 II Limestone, ME

Another post-hiatus song that often stretched into psychedelic excursions, none were more profound than this twenty-minute odyssey in Limestone. With some of the most ambient psychedelia of the weekend, this jam helped define the glorious festival – IT.



Tweezer” 6.24.00 I Lakewood, Atlanta, GA

A classic through and through, this “Tweezer” passes through some serious swamp funk on the way to a completely different and triumphant jam.


12.31.09 (W.Rogell)


Ramble On > Slave” 8.12.98 I Vernon Downs, NY

This gorgeous combination of songs peaked the first set of Vernon Downs with majesty. Laying out “Ramble On’s” melody in the peak of “Slave,” Trey combined these two pieces masterfully. A piece of aural reverie, this sequence held up as a Summer ’98 highlighht after an extensive tour.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/ph98-08-12d1t07.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/ph98-08-12d1t08.mp3] Tags:

817 Responses to “Ten Tunes for Friday”

  1. Mr. Completely Says:

    that’s obv a d20 check @neem

    IMO the first transition is totally borked and the second one is better

    good Jibboo as usual, great idea, nice gusto in the attempt, high degree of difficulty but low execution score as they failed to stick the landing

  2. whole tour! Says:

    When they went back into jiboo that place went apeshit.

  3. stitchstash Says:

    I wonder how many “epic” shows contain an extended vocal jam. It would be fun to look back on favorite shows to see if they’re there. Their had to be used next in a sentence.

  4. Mr. Completely Says:

    not saying the Miami stuff holds up to the BEST of the 90s or anything

    but the best of Miami did hold up for me next to “average great” late 90s Phish

    which is cool and pretty great progress in 9 months IMO

  5. neemor Says:

    Someone suggested (whole tour?) that we go to lala.com and spin the 7.15.03 Soundcheck Scents.

    Thank you.

  6. BrandonKayda Says:

    I remember listening to the stream and everybody going “is this really happening?” during that GBOTT. Incredible rendition. The organic space that develops out of the first section of the jam is marvelous, great interplay between Trey/Mike. Also, there is a section where Trey starts playing really fast notes and the band follows him up to where the *peak* should be, but he holds the sustain and they move to another jam.

    Gotta love 3.0

    Yeah, I have fond memories of listening to a shitty stream of Miami on the internet. What a life. LLFA

  7. whole tour! Says:

    check out yawningdrone.com for the entire year of 2009 streaming soundboards! This site is the effing bee’s knees! every second of 2009.

  8. cal Says:

    I think “Jibboo”>”Wilson” sounds almost accidental; everybody just kinda melts away and Trey sort of plucks it in his sleep, then realizes what he just did…but >”Jibboo” is a thrill.

  9. Mr. Palmer Says:

    The Red Rocks tweezer came on the shuffle in the car today. Turned it up to “11”. And that Tweezer stands up in my opinion. Miami is my favorite still, but the RR version is great.

  10. whole tour! Says:

    Not only is it streaming, but you can listen to individual tracks.

    My top streams have to be cincy night 2 set 1, albany set 2, 12-29-09, 12-30-09, 12-31-09. must have played them about a million times already. everytime it just gets better!

  11. whole tour! Says:

    Heard them playing the Asheville “numberline” on sirius the other night. Photographic musical memory kicked in instantly. Just knew it was asheville the second i heard it. Still holds up very very nicely considering it was in the dawn of 3.0.

  12. neemor Says:

    “not saying the Miami stuff holds up to the BEST of the 90s or anything”

    To me, it’s almost like a completely different band in ’09.
    What Phish did attacking the music this year was great because it honestly had a ‘clean’ feel to it for me.

    Which fits the ‘clean’ image of the band.

    I wouldn’t go so far as to say that it IS a completely different band musically, but the music has developed a very different feel to it.

    While ’09 may not hold up to the best of the past, I’ve come to find it easier to listen to some full shows from this era all the way through than I can some of the shows from 2.0 especially.
    I would find myself gleaning jams from earlier years whereas now I love listening to how the show develops throughout, how they get to the point when that second set KDF births that Tweezer.
    Maybe I’ve matured in my musical listening.

  13. Lycanthropist Says:


    I agree that the shows have gotten stronger as a whole. I definitely can let a whole 09 show play without feeling the need to skip tracks (except sample)

  14. neemor Says:

    cal: That’s exactly what it sounds like to me, too. Almost a sheepish or accidental re-entry.

    wt coming up large again, thanks!

  15. BrandonKayda Says:

    I really enjoy the subtle dissonance they have been throwing into songs like KDF, Character Zero, etc.

  16. neemor Says:

    Yeah, lycan.

    I think it really showcases Trey’s diligence in creating an honest-to-goodness setlist.

    I think sometimes we (I know this holds true for me) dislike the idea of this band in particular using a setlist. But I think that it fits what the band accomplished to get back to comfort with their catalog.
    Almost roadmapping the return to greatness.

    And the Bio explained that the band has the uncanny ability and plays in such a way that if the setlist needs to be abandoned that night due to where the music leads, they can and will.

  17. whole tour! Says:

    there is a definite concept behind 2009 phish…just as there were concept years throughout their career. I totally see what they were trying to achieve. At the start of 2009, it seemed kinda odd, but as the year progressed the concept became more clear.

    When i hear 2009 jams…it has this almost slinky cool quality to it. Gordon pumps out those sheets of bass cushion. Trey is shredding very geometrically and angularly. It’s almost as trey and page and gordo are linked up like buiding blocks that perpetually push each others block forward. Very slick playing exemplified by a good “Kill devil Falls” jam.

    if that makes any sense? lol

    While it was a slow start, things certainly got rolling alone quite nicely again. 2009 is def on the list of my favorite years…no doubt.

  18. Marshall Says:

    @ WT – every time you say anything about Miami, I feel like I’m saying it. We had pretty much the same seats. Goes to show that we were experiencing IT up there in the far-end 400s. I was not happy with my tix pull initially, but after being up there, I’ll take head on to the stage from any level over side or behind stage.

    Re: Asheville #line, I played that show only second to the number of times I played 3.6 Reunion show before summer. The floor at the civic center was one of the best places I’ve ever “done Phish indoors.”

  19. Mr. Completely Says:

    @neemor, great perspective

    @brandon, yeah, the little moment where the typical climbing jam in Zero went sideways for a second at the Gorge really got my attention

    cool stuff

  20. neemor Says:

    I found myself falling in love with so much of the catalog that used to flow past me even in the live setting.
    Monster set makers like Tweezer, Bowie and Bag began to fall on muted ears for me in the late nineties whereas now every song has taken on new vitality.

    Equal parts revival in the band’s interest in attacking old school staples and my own resolve to take Phish less for granted, I think.

  21. Mr. Completely Says:

    as long as you’re willing to diverge from it in the moment, why not a setlist if that’s what works for you?

    basically whatever it is they’re doing, keep doing that, it’s working

  22. neemor Says:

    Phish ’09: “Slinky Cool”

  23. Marshall Says:

    So many things about Miami stand out for me. First New Years. First Miami. First four-night run. First What’s The Use. First Soul Shakedown. Hearing a bunch of songs I used to hear back in the mid-90s (Tela, Swept Away>Steep). Chillin’ on South Beach during the days. Walking to the shows.

    Other than Hampton, that’s the most energy I’ve experienced at a Phish show indoors. Will be a lifetime highlight.

  24. Marshall Says:

    Phish ’09: Crushed Velvet.

  25. neemor Says:

    Phish ’10: “If it ain’t broke, Don’t fix it.”

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