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Phish News & Setlists - for fans, by fans

A feed by The Mockingbird Foundation


MSG5 Recap: Who Needs "Raspberry Beret" Anyway?

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-27 18:35

[We would like to thank Brandy Davis, @smilercontrol, for writing this recap.]

All of the hype of the jam-filled donut show, which brought more fingers to the brisk summer air in front of MSG than I have seen since any ol' sold out Dick's Saturday night, was not in vain, as we all by now know of what occurred inside New York's grand arena on Tuesday night. But what of the sister show to follow? Destined to be in the shadows (or so I thought), the chatter leading up to Wednesday night was a bit deflated; or perhaps there just wasn't enough infinity in the universe to bask in the radioactive glow of one night, while simultaneously over-speculating about the next. Not to say there was no speculation... a white-powered donut theme was sure to drag the word "cocaine" across the lips of even the most straight-edge fans. As for myself, I was hanging on the clue of "traditional," hoping we'd get an old-school set of songs from the 80's. Junta, anyone?

However, as show time approached, you could feel the energy build in the space around the Garden. "It's a great time to be a Phish fan." The old adage is as appropriate as ever, and everyone outside of MSG last night was feeling it. There was an unusual, yet perfect, combination of excitement from the night before, and reasonable expectations for the night ahead. That is a great headspace to take Phishing. The absolutely perfect weather and plentitude of tickets for everyone who wanted (to pay for) them didn't hurt, either. The crowds were thick, colorful, and all smiles at the Garden stoop pre-game last night. Lets go inside, shall we?

Photo © Stephen Olker
Photo © Stephen Olker

Phish 2017-07-26

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-26 04:00

Mockingbird's Baker's Dozen #5

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-26 18:00

In celebration of Phish's 13-show run at Madison Square Garden, the Mockingbird Foundation is announcing 13 unsolicited "miracle grants" supporting music programs across the country. Each board member identified their favorite Phish show, and we found a worthy music education program nearby, part of the Foundation's long-standing Tour Grants program. We're presenting these 13 special grants chronologically, based on the dates of those favorited shows.

Board member John Demeter, @johnnyd, picked the 7/16/94 show held at Sugarbush's Mt. Ellen in Fayston, VT, and we're sending a $1,500 grant check to nearby Harwood Unified Union School District (which was known until very recently as the Washington West Supervisory Union. Don't ask. Seriously.)

The one that got away.


Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-26 15:14

[Recap courtesy of user @Dmg924, Dave Goldstein.]

Let me let you in on a little bit of my creative process. Generally, when I write a recap such as this, I’ll have the first two introductory paragraphs written in advance; this saves valuable time and allows me to focus on the show details more fully. In anticipation of recapping the July 25, 2017 Phish show, I wrote two paragraphs on Monday detailing the “very good” first weekend of Baker’s Dozen, discussing the doughnut flavor gimmick, and stating how a random Tuesday night in New York City feels like bonus Phish. You know, quaintly setting the stage.

I tossed those two paragraphs out because they’re worthless now; this is being written an hour after the encore. Time will ultimately tell how 7/25/17 rates in the pantheon, but let us not mince any words here. I feel confident stating it is easily the best two set Phish show since 8/12/15 from Philadelphia, easily a Top 10 show of Phish 3.0, and if we’re being as hyperbolic as possible, one of maybe three Phish shows of the past five years that you can credibly discuss in the same breath as 8/31/12 and not be thought of as a hapless fluffer. The doughnut flavor was “JAM FILLED;” it turned out to be little more than an afterthought that the jam in question happened to be raspberry (though to be fair, “Raspberry Beret” was the first song on the p.a. post-show).

Photo © Stephen Olker
Photo © Stephen Olker

Phish 2017-07-25

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-25 04:00

Set 1: Sample in a Jar, Lawn Boy[1] > My Friend, My Friend[2] > Stash, Bathtub Gin

Set 2: Fuego > Thread > Crosseyed and Painless > Makisupa Policeman -> End of Session[3] > Tuesday > Cavern

Encore: Julius > Lawn Boy

Mockingbird's Baker's Dozen #4

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-25 18:00

In celebration of Phish's 13-show run at Madison Square Garden, the Mockingbird Foundation is announcing 13 unsolicited "miracle grants" supporting music programs across the country. Each board member identified their favorite Phish show, and we found a worthy music education program nearby, part of the Foundation's long-standing Tour Grants program. We're presenting these 13 special grants chronologically, based on the dates of those favorited shows. Following #1, #2, and #3, here's #4...

Ah, 1994 - a truly joyous time to be a Phish fan! The band was bursting at the seams with inspiration, innovation and raw talent...touring incessantly while blowing minds and melting faces on a daily basis. And the fan base was expanding exponentially, many of us sharing our amazement, excitement, tales and friendship with each other via the developing Internet - r.m.p., IRC, post-show run to the pay phone to call Ellis with the setlist, sign up for the tape trees to get last month’s tapes (always saving the MaxPoints!).

As a university student in Santa Cruz I did what I could to get to as many shows as possible, mainly on the West Coast. For my summer tour, that meant seven shows in May, wrapping up with five straight days of Phish - three at the Warfield, followed by two headlining shows in Monterey at the incredible Laguna Seca Daze festival. What a run - the Warfield curtain opening to a monster "Curtain"...a screaming debut of "Simple" melting into a Puccini opera...thousands of boxes of mac and cheese (“shake shake shake when you hear the drum break!”)...Les Claypool dropping hands and jaw as Fish rips on the Electrolux...then a final show under the Monterey sun - my first up close on the rail - with the band so amped to just keep on playing that they dropped a six-song double encore. Nobody wanted to stop, and I knew I needed more more more!

Some People Like to Go Out Dancing (or, It's Just a Restless Feeling): Baker's Dozen Night 3

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-24 13:00

Spice company Adams Extract is thought to have spread the red velvet cake throughout the US during the Great Depression by including it on recipe cards as a means to sell red food coloring; the cake was appropriated by the Waldorf-Astoria as the Waldorf-Astoria Cake; additionally, the cake may have seen a resurgence in the late 80s after being featured as an armadillo in the movie Steel Magnolias. (Thanks, Wiki.)

No matter its history as a food, fans began the guessing process following the announcement of Red Velvet as the flavor of the third evening of the Baker’s Dozen. Guesses of Velvet Underground bust-outs to a cover of Velvet Revolver to the obligatory "Wading In the Velvet Sea" glazed over screens throughout the day. But I tried to keep an expectation-free head as I made my way into the Garden (alas, too late for doughnuts but not too late to settle-in a few people back, Mike-side). Having followed the first two evenings — or, shall we say, Coconut and Strawberry — via Twitter, stream, and shitty chat rooms, I was quite ready to get my sweet on in person.

Mystery Jam Monday Part 284

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-24 12:00

Welcome to the 284th edition of Phish.Net's Mystery Jam Monday, the penultimate of July. The winner will receive an MP3 download code courtesy of our friends at LivePhish.com / Nugs.Net. To win, be the first person to identify the song and date of each of the three mystery clips. The three clips are connected by a theme, but the theme needn't be part of the correct answer – though it should help you get there. Each person gets one guess to start – if no one guesses correctly, I will post a hint on Tuesday around 10 AM PT / 1 PM ET, after which each person gets one more guess before the correct answer is revealed on Wednesday around 10 AM PT / 1 PM ET. Good luck!

Answer: Congrats to @mickeyjoe86 for quickly figuring out this week's MJM with a little help from his friends, and taking home his fourth win in the process – he's now more than halfway to MJM Emeritus! This week there was one red herring theme (My Sweet One could refer to donuts, and this jam is easily found by Googling "phish snoring jam"), one handwavy theme (all jams in the last week of November), and one true theme (all my jams go // backwards down the number line). The clips were 11/30/94 "My Sweet One," 11/26/97 "Character Zero," and 11/28/09 "Seven Below." Stay tuned on Monday for the hardest of July: MJM285.

Phish 2017-07-23

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-23 04:00

Mockingbird's Baker's Dozen #3

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-23 18:00

In celebration of Phish's 13-show run at Madison Square Garden, the Mockingbird Foundation is announcing 13 unsolicited "miracle grants" supporting music programs across the country. Each board member identified their favorite Phish show, and we found a worthy music education program nearby, part of the Foundation's long-standing Tour Grants program. We're presenting these 13 special grants chronologically, based on the dates of those favorited shows. Following #1 and #2, here's #3...

A little over 23 years ago (May 7, 1994 to be exact), Phish played a concert at the Bomb Factory in Dallas, TX. This show has become famous for its second set, an extended jam weaving in and out of "Tweezer" and songs such as "Sparks", "Makisupa Policeman", "Walk Away", "Cannonball", and "Purple Rain". This hour-long segment, which later became known as the Tweezerfest, stands largely unique in Phish’s history.

Phish have played many extended jams since this date, but taking the entirety of a set (sans an introductory "Loving Cup" > "Sparkle") to devote to the jam, to use it to tie together every song played at the end, even taking the normally short goofy "Hold Your Head Up" as a launchpad to explore a little more... this is something that marks this night as a special occasion.

For those of us lucky enough to be in attendance, the 2/3-filled Bomb Factory in the Deep Elum region of Dallas is the location of a euphoric event, a defining night in the lives of many of us. In honor of that electric evening, the Mockingbird Foundation is giving a $1,500 grant to support music education at Benjamin Franklin Middle School in Dallas, TX. Located 9 miles north of the Factory, one can only hope that their band has been inspired by the energy present that night. As Jon sang, “Yeah, it’s time we all reach out to the new. And that means you too [the Benjamin Franklin Middle School of] Dallas, TX!”

The Strawberries Taste Like Strawberries: Baker's Dozen Night 2

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-23 12:25

Checking in from sunny, hot Los Angeles, at the corner of Peak and Fomo. Let’s see what Phish has up their sleeves tonight, besides the strawberry donut surprise. [But first: three cheers to this concept that the band cooked up with their pals at the estimable Federal Donuts. It’s been the catalyst for a lot of top notch Phish nerdery, conjecture, and fun. Well done!]

Photo © Phish
Photo © Phish

The a capella “Strawberry Fields Forever” that kicks off this unusual show is a lovely opening flourish, with each band member taking a verse, and gamely punching through the Saturday crowd’s semi-drunken appreciation. There’s a dramatic beat before the final “... forever” that baits the crowd much like the pause in “Divided Sky,” and then the strawberry theme carries forward into “Halley’s Comet” as the band takes their places.

Phish 2017-07-22

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-22 04:00

Mockingbird's Baker's Dozen #2

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-22 18:00

In celebration of Phish's 13-show run at Madison Square Garden, the Mockingbird Foundation will announce 13 unsolicited "miracle grants" supporting music programs across the country. Each board member identified their favorite Phish show, and we found a worthy music education program nearby, part of the Foundation's long-standing Tour Grants program. We're presenting these 13 special grants chronologically, based on the dates of those favorited shows. We did #1; here's #2...

While every New Year's Eve show is special, 12/31/93 at the Worcester Centrum was one for the ages. The stage was decorated like a giant aquarium and the midnight gag saw the band in scuba gear being lowered from the rafters and climbing into a giant clam. The night also featured the first ever "Down With Disease" jam (with footage later used for their one and only made-for-MTV music video) and what many consider to be the best "Harry Hood" ever played. We're celebrating that night with a $1,500 grant to the nearby South High Community School, where instruction in the band program emphasizes not only musical execucation but also literacy ("in order to be informed, well-rounded listeners of many genres") and passion.

You Put the Show in the Coconut: Baker's Dozen Night 1

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-22 04:16

Tonight's recap is coming to you from couch tour; if that makes you angry I suggest you look for other, more important things to be angry about. Follow me on Twitter if you want to yell at me: @mielcarz

I started this summer in a weird place with Phish – even though the Baker’s Dozen residency was a new and novel concept for the band, for some reason I had low expectations that they would do anything truly groundbreaking. Of course, Phish exists to defy expectations. The first five shows of tour featured no repeats, and four of the five had jams of longer than 20 minutes, one of them a long wished-for bustout of an epic “Mr. Completely.” Only the most jaded fan could listen to the tour so far and not be salivating about what was to come in the next 13 shows. Building on the Baker’s Dozen theme and highlighting the uniqueness of the run, the band announced that there would be a different donut for each show served to early arrivers. Prior to lights, speculation was running rampant in the Phish universe - would there be no repeats all tour? None in the 13 MSG shows? One repeat? One song they play every night? Special guests? Trolling Billy Joel? Like they say in the song (that will only be played once during the run, Icculus willing), the only rule is it begins!

Phish 2017-07-21

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-21 04:00

Set 1: Shake Your Coconuts[1], Martian Monster, Timber Ho! > 555, Pigtail, Halfway to the Moon, Reba[2], Moonage Daydream, Walls of the Cave

Set 2: Tweezer > Seven Below > Billy Breathes > Sparkle, Everything's Right > Slave to the Traffic Light > Suzy Greenberg, Coconut[3]

Encore: The Mango Song > Good Times Bad Times

Phish.net Forum Identifies $12K in Grantees

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-14 15:12

The Mockingbird Foundation has announced unsolicited grants totaling $12,000 to support music education programs in cities where Phish will perform this summer. They were selected by members of the Phish.net forum community, led by board member Johnny Demeter, recently identified as Director of Outreach.

The eight $1,500 "miracle grants" - supporting two music programs in each of four cities - are part of a long-standing Mockingbird effort to help bring music from the Phish community to the local community, and are one of many ways fans contribute to the areas in which the band performs. The eight recipients include a wide array of settings, genres, and populations served - and are listed here in order of Phish's tour dates (provided parenthetically):

Update: Mockingbird Fundraiser in Chicago

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-12 20:09

Rock Bottom Brewery (1 West Grand Ave.) is celebrating Phish's tour-opening shows in Chicago this weekend with a fundraiser for The Mockingbird Foundation. On Thursday, July 13th, they are tapping a keg of an ale that they brewed for the weekend, called "Sample." It is being sold in jars, which will be available for purchase. For every "Sample" in a jar consumed over the weekend, Rock Bottom will donate fifty cents to Mockingbird, but they'll also donate $1 to Mockingbird for every jar sold. There will be music at the tapping party, from 6-8 p.m., specifically, Jon Sabal and Mark Hague from Helping Phriendly Orchestra (and other bands, inc. Hack and Wheeze and Mr. Blotto). Please support this fundraiser if you can. For more information, see the June 22 announcement.

FYI: 2017 Phish Ticket Code Redemption

Permalink - Posted on 2017-07-06 17:06

Phish changed its ticket code download policy. Codes on tickets are now redeemable for a free stream of the show using the LivePhish mobile app, as well as a discounted MP3 or other format copy of the show (available from the website), whereas previously, the code entitled you to a free MP3 download of the show from LivePhish. (Free MP3 downloads are still available using any pre-2017 ticket codes.) 

A portion of LivePhish revenue supports The Mockingbird Foundation, and has since the beginning of LivePhish. Mockingbird volunteers operate and manage this site. Your support of the band and LivePhish therefore indirectly supports Phish.net, and we are very grateful for it.

LivePhish deserves our continued support. Thank you.

Chicago's Rock Bottom Brewery To Fundraise For Mockingbird

Permalink - Posted on 2017-06-22 15:51

Since Phish will begin the Summer tour at Chicago's Northerly Island Pavilion the weekend of July 14 with three shows, Rock Bottom Brewery (1 West Grand Ave.) is celebrating with a fundraiser for The Mockingbird Foundation.

They are brewing a special ale for the weekend, called "Sample," which will be sold :::wait for it:::  in a jar.  "Sample" is "a hoppy red ale brewed with copious amounts of Simcoe, Citra and Columbus hops for that pungent, heady hop aroma." It should therefore taste very good both before, and after, you hear "Sample in a Jar" at a show. It will be sold for $7, and will be served in a jar that you can buy for $3 (while supplies last). The jars were very popular at the previous fundraisers years ago (also held when Phish played Northerly), so we expect they'll sell out. 

For every "Sample" consumed over the weekend, Rock Bottom will donate fifty cents to Mockingbird, but they'll donate $1 to Mockingbird for every jar sold. So, in other words, if you buy a "Sample AND a Jar," $1.50 of your $10 will go to Mockingbird, and support the funding of music education programs. Rock Bottom will also have some "Phish-inspired" live music on their roof on Thursday, July 13, and will have the "Sample" tapping party that day as well. This promotion thus runs from Thursday through Sunday the 16th. The rooftop will be open (and serving food) until 10:30pm, and last call on the roof is at 11:30pm. But the restaurant will be open post-show on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday with full menu until midnight and a late night menu until 1am, with last call at 1:30am. [Editor's note: I was there years ago after 1am post-show, and the place was full of fans.]  The brewer, Raybird, and Kyle (an AGM) may be around if you show up at Rock Bottom, passing out Mockingbird information. PLEASE THANK THEM if you see them, as this is a very cool thing for them to do. (And you may see Kyle at a show as well, as he's a fan!) So, please, support this fundraiser if you can, and if you can't, at least tell your wook friends going to the shows to support it as well. 


July and August WaterWheel Benefits Pre-Show At MSG

Permalink - Posted on 2017-05-24 17:51

The WaterWheel Foundation has announced two benefit celebrations at MSG before the shows on Saturday, July 22, 2017, and Saturday, August 5, 2017.

Tickets for the shows go on sale tomorrow, Thursday, May 25, at noon eastern, HERE

The first benefit celebration on July 22 will raise funds for four charities, each one chosen by a band member. The second benefit celebration, on August 5, is in honor of the 20th anniversaries of both The WaterWheel Foundation and The Mockingbird Foundation. It will raise funds for Mockingbird, whose volunteers operate Phish.net. The Mockingbird Foundation is once again enormously grateful to The WaterWheel Foundation and Phish for this honor!

If you have never been to a WaterWheel pre-show benefit at Madison Square Garden, here's some of what you can expect for the price of admission:

(1) being surrounded pre-show by generous, friendly people in what is basically MSG's VIP lounge;

(2) food and a full bar;

(3) a Pollock poster (edition of 300), and it's particularly cool that he's doing a diptych, with one poster for each of the two benefit events;

(4) early entrance into the venue;

(5) raffle or auction of certain items, including autographed memorabilia from Phish's Archives;

(6) access to the lounge where the event takes place, and its clean, spacious bathrooms, during setbreak;

(7) a specialty chocolate bar, created and donated by Asher's Chocolates, that I guarantee to be delicious (or you can give me the part you do not eat).

Note that YOU MUST ALREADY BE A TICKET-HOLDER FOR THE PHISH CONCERT ON THE EVENING THAT YOU ATTEND THE BENEFIT PRE-SHOW EVENT in order to get in to the pre-show event. You must PRESENT THAT TICKET in order to get into the pre-show benefit event. 

Please support these events if you can! By supporting them, and also LivePhish, you support both Mockingbird and Phish.net. Thank you!