a Project of the Mockingbird Foundation

For a limited time, you can access our blog archive at

Video of the Week: 1994-11-16

Posted 4 years ago by tmwsiy - 12 comments Link:, posted in the Video category

Thanks very much to Jesse Feitel who contibuted this week's video of the week.

On the heels of a legendary and momentous summer tour ending at the Sugarbush Resort in Vermont, Phish entered into its elaborate Fall 1994 tour with a full head of steam. The tour, which has given us countless "best-of" versions of songs, the first costume set Halloween show in Glen Falls, NY, and jolted the band into national prominence and its first visit to Madison Square Garden on December 30th, was unique in every sense of the word. For a select few shows throughout the November Midwest portion of the tour, legendary bluegrass musician Reverend Jeff Mosier, who had previously played with Bluegrass Underground and the Aquarium Rescue Unit, joined Phish on the road to educate the band on its hunger to play more Bluegrass tunes throughout its live performances.

Fans curious to see and hear this incredible week of music should be grateful to Mosier, who did a wonderful job of documenting his time with the band. In his video collection, we see Phish learning the intricacies of playing classic Bluegrass tunes from the Reverend, as well as an unbelievably candid view into the band off the stage. Musically, Mosier teaches the band Bluegrass classics, and plays along onstage, with such tunes as "My Long Journey Home", "To France", "Fixin' To Die", and many others. Many of these tunes were performed in Bloomington, IN on November 19th, in the parking lot outside of the venue after the show. Tapes circulate of this incredible Phish experience, where the band sits in with Mosier and local musicians to the delight of the fans who decided to stick around after the show. This week's incredible video shows the band practicing "I'm Blue, I'm Lonesome", a tune which would find its way into the rotation in Fall 1995, much to the delight of those who love hearing Page hit those beautiful high notes. The video is from the afternoon of November 16th, just hours before the band would officially debut the tune at the Hill Auditorium at the University of Michigan. The clip includes several points where the Reverend helps the band develop the pace of the classic song, and shows just how talented each of the members of the band are to learn a song in such a short period of time. Fish is absent from the clip.

Please enjoy this video of the week, and we hope that this small look into Fall 1994 either leads you to discover, or even re-discover some of the incredible moments from those legendary months in Phish history.

[Note: Jeff Mosier was a very early member of ARU. Interestingly, a recent interview with Jimmy Herring of ARU, about his influences was published in Guitar World:

"The Aquarium Rescue Unit and Phish used to play together quite a bit back in the old days. We were coming up at the same time and you knew those guys were going to be huge. They were really cool to us. We would go up to the Northeast and open for Phish and then they would come down South and open for us in places like Atlanta and Tuscaloosa. And we would be laughing like, “Phish is opening for us, what a joke!” because we knew they were going to take over the world. You could see it coming and eventually they did."

Every Friday, we highlight a video with a brief recap of the show it is from and what makes it interesting, noteworthy or simply fun. With the help of Dan Saewitz from, we hope to keep the stream of videos coming at you entertaining and interesting. Have a cool video you’d like to suggest? Interested in contributing a review yourself? Please feel free to PM me and we’d be more than happy to get your input. Thanks for reading and watching.

Dietl Says We're Clogitated

Posted 4 years ago by Lemuria - 3 comments Link:, posted in the Video category

In a 11-2-11 interview on The O'Reilly Factor, former NYPD detective Bo Dietl mentioned having done "an investigation on this group Phish". Presumedly, he means fans, not the band - but his rambling, conspiratorial babble doesn't make much clear. One blogger generously called him a "pigeonholing simpleton", but he's not even that cogent. He stereotypes all fans as having dreadlocks ("all clogitated... very long hair"), being "against everything society is about" (a level of reactionary vagueness that could only pass on this show), and "could become violent at any time" (which is sheer nonsenscoe).

Trey in Rolling Stone on writing musicals

Posted 4 years ago by jackl - 4 comments Link:, posted in the Quote category

(Interviewer Benjy Eisen:) What was the most unexpected challenge of writing your first real score?

(Trey Anastasio:) It's been a steep learning curve. I've learned that in the theater the story is everything. Every lyric, every line and every musical gesture has to propel the journey of a given character or the overall plot. We've had workshops that take place over two or three week periods. In the workshops, actors run thru each number with minimal props and blocking. Sometimes a song doesn't land the way we expected it to. The solution is often not what I would have anticipated.

In one case, there was a song that Amanda and I had written that we were particularly excited about. When the actor sang it in the workshop, it didn't have the same emotional impact as it did on the demo. Amanda, Doug and I huddled up in the hallway to talk about it. I suggested re-writing the song, but Doug disagreed. He explained that in this case, he didn't think that the issue was the song. He felt that the character needed a few more lines of dialogue to set the song up, so that the audience understood the intent behind the song before they heard it. He changed the actor's lines, we ran it again and it was stunning. This was a complete revelation to me. In the past, I've habitually led with the music. I've learned so much from this experience.

Read more, full interview at:

Congratulations to Phish.netter and r.m.p. digester Benjy Eisen for doing this interview with Trey in Rolling Stone.

.You know what Trey looks like, this is Benji

Benjy Eisen

Mystery Jam Monday Part 74

Posted 4 years ago by lumpblockclod - 18 comments Link:, posted in the Audio category (564 listens)

Just as we've done for the last 73 weeks, the Blog is proud to bring you another Mystery Jam. As usual, we will be playing for an MP3 download, courtesy of our friends at / Nugs.Net. The rules haven't changed: you need to correctly identify the song and the date to win. Post your guess in the comments. One guess per person per day (with the second “day” starting after I post the hint). The hint will come on Tuesday and the answer will be posted on Wednesday. Good luck...

Tuesday Hint: No hint needed this week.

Wednesday Answer: Congrats to RabeldyNugs on his league leading seventh win with the 6/9/00 "Tweezer." MJ75 coming up Monday...

Trey, on meeting Lou Reed

Posted 4 years ago by Lemuria - 3 comments Link:, posted in the Quote category

We did this gig with Lou Reed in Germany. I was getting ready to go on, and I was walking across this field behind the stage. It was this kind of cool outdoor venue, and there was Lou Reed sitting there. So I went up to talk to him, introduce myself and everything, he was really nice, and I asked him a couple of questions about what he’s up to these days, blah-blah-blah. And then he was standing there and we went to go onstage, and as I was walking onstage he said, ‘Show ‘em how to rock and roll. After all, we invented it.’ I said, “Oh, okay,” and walked onstage. And as we started playing I got really confused and couldn’t tell if he had meant Americans or the Velvet Underground. I thought both statements could be true. So I spent the whole set trying to figure that one out. I still haven’t figured it out. I still sit there scratching my head every night while we’re playing: Did he mean Americans…?

A story from Trey about meeting Lou Reed, from the 10-31-98 Phishbill

Bob Lefsetz and the Phish paradigm

Posted 4 years ago by jackl - 6 comments Link:, posted in the Quote category

It all comes down to radio. Either it plays your new single or you collapse. Live by the sword, die by the sword. Doesn't matter what you did in the past, if your new record ain't a hit on the radio, you're toast. Just look at Christina Aguilera. Her album stunk up the joint, she got no traction at radio, and she had to cancel her whole damn tour.

Didn't used to be this way. Used to be bands were developed slowly. The audience saw them as more than one hit wonders. These are the classic rock acts. Once we got to the video era, band shelf lifes shortened. Now it's nonexistent.

If you were made by the machine.

If you made it outside the system, if it was about touring and gaining fans slowly, you're laughing all the way to the bank. Recorded music revenue may be way down, but Phish is still cleaning up on the road, despite never having a mainstream radio hit, without having any radio airplay whatsoever, except for pockets of college and Triple-A exposure.

And then there are the electronica acts. Arguably, Tiesto is the biggest touring act in the business. Sure, there are a handful of acts who could draw more, but Tiesto can do it night after night, every show is different, people come for the experience. And most of America's got no idea who Tiesto is, they've never even heard the name.

Today's big Top Forty star, Rihanna, if she fails at radio next time, she's in the same boat as Christina Aguilera. Same deal with Katy Perry. See why the major labels are up in arms, why they're freaking out? You can't sell a record and nothing lasts, how's that for a paradigm?

From Bob Lefsetz' music industry newsletter,

Video of the Week: 1989-10-31

Posted 4 years ago by tmwsiy - 6 comments Link:, posted in the Video category

Happy Halloween!

For many people, some of the shows amongst their personal most memorable, most fun, and most talked about after the fact have been Halloween shows. Before the rich tradition of album covers started in 1994 with the White Album in Glens Falls, Phish already had a handful of memorable All Hallow's Eve dates under their belt. While their very first show was oft thought to be a Halloween event, indeed the first Halloween show took place in 1986 at Goddard College and included the debut of David Bowie and a guest appearance by Richard "Nancy Taube" Wright, the writer of "Halley's Comet" and "I Didn't Know" among others. The following year, 1987, saw a repeat performance on Halloween at Goddard with Fishman purportedly shaving his entire body and the band debuting the Syd Barrett "Love You" that has become a staple.

1988 didn't enjoy a Halloween show, but the following year, in their final performance ever at the beloved Goddard College, Phish put on an extraordinary show. While this clip can only begin to paint the picture of the musical mayhem and quintessential Phish quirkiness that was starting to build quite a regional reputation, it does perfectly paint a picture of Phish at the time: Loose, having tons of fun, thoroughly enjoying themselves, and completely engrossed in the moment. This clip of "Bathtub Gin" shows Trey wearing Devil's Horns and dark sunglasses. Earlier in the evening he was sporting strap-on breasts. Also, the debut of "Kung" and the distribution of Mac and Cheese boxes for the "Bowie" intro happened on this memorable evening.

1990 and 1991 saw a jump to Colorado for the Halloween festivities at back to back year's shows at Colorado College. 1990's show has been gloriously released as a Live Phish release but 1991's show has been more elusive for high quality recordings. Both terrific shows that add to the roster of memorable Halloween nights. 1992 and 1993 again were devoid of 10/31 shows and 1994 and on are well documented & remembered by even the most casual of Phish fan.

[Halloween 1990. Photo Credit: Parker Harrington]

Every Friday, we highlight a video with a brief recap of the show it is from and what makes it interesting, noteworthy or simply fun. With the help of Dan Saewitz from, we hope to keep the stream of videos coming at you entertaining and interesting. Have a cool video you’d like to suggest? Interested in contributing a review yourself? Please feel free to PM me and we’d be more than happy to get your input. Thanks for reading and watching.

Music Can't Lie

Posted 4 years ago by Lemuria - 19 comments Link:, posted in the Quote category

Music can’t lie — it really is the universal language. People can hear your intent. If your intent is to sell records and make money, people will hear that, and it blackens the music. That’s why the live thing has been so exciting, and so spiritual for us. Once the fans are in the room, there’s nothing we can do on-stage that will bring us any more monetary gain. So we’re then free to explore and celebrate the spiritual aspect of the music.

Trey Anastasio, The Detroit News, 10/26/95

Start NewestNewer NewerOlder NextOldest End

Login Register