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Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Phish Performs All A Cappella Set

photo: Dave Vann
On the heels of their tremendously successful 3-day Halloween run in Atlantic City this past weekend, Phish performed an additional unannounced show back in their hometown of Burlington, Vermont yesterday.  Achieving yet another not-so-little feat in their long line of musical accomplishments, the band performed their first "all a cappella" show ever at the National Convention of Barbershop Singers*.  This marks the first time in rock and roll history that a band (especially one known primarily for their musical exploration through instrumentation) put down their instruments and still played a "sold out" show.  Because no "phans" were made aware of the show and no tickets were made availble to the public, the house mostly consisted true barbershop artists.  And their grandparents.  Some were even cutting hair as they warmed up their vocal chords.  "It helps me relax," Nigel Pinchworthy, of the Nantucket-based barbershop outfit 'The Singing Nettles,' gushed to Rolling Stone magazine. 

The band played only one set, and unfortunately no recording of the show was made.  Call it a gaffe on the guys' part, maybe.  Or perhaps it was another calculated move by a band that continues to add to their ever growing musical legacy with each passing day.  No matter how you slice it though, they blew the moustaches off the enthralled audience for almost 30 full minutes.

11.03.10 Burlington Convention Center, Burlington, VT 

Set:
Back In My Home Town Reprise^
Star Spangled Banner
Grind
My Sweet One
Birdwatcher
I Didn't Know >
Reba (whistling outro)
Stage Banter >
YEM Vocal Jam >
Kung >
Stage Banter Reprise
Lengthwise
Hello My Baby
Amazing Grace >
Have Mercy
Tomorrow's Song

Encore:
Freebird
Don't Bogart That Joint

^though not actually a song, the band sung this phrase in the 90s before a show in Vermont and reprised it for the first time ever that day.

*Formally named the National Convention of Barbershop Quartets, the name was changed after quintets, sextets, and septets felt they weren't being treated equally by judges.  

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