‘Cluster Flies’: James Petralli Covers Phish’s ‘Gotta Jibboo’

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JamBase presents Cluster Flies, a covers compilation reimagining Phish‘s album Farmhouse, complete with bonus songs and revamped tracklist. The limited-edition 3LP release was mastered by engineer Joe Lambert and includes custom artwork and a poster created by longtime Phish collaborator Jim Pollock. A pre-order is underway now through May 3 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern. Visit www.clusterflies.com for purchasing information as well as full album credits and tracklist details.

Each of the songs on Cluster Flies will be featured via daily episodes of The JamBase Podcast with interviews with the musician that recorded the cover. Today’s episode features James Petralli of White Denim covering “Gotta Jibboo.” Explore additional Cluster Flies podcast episodes here.

Phish‘s song, “Gotta Jibboo,” holds down the six-slot on Farmhouse. Guitarist Trey Anastasio wrote “Gotta Jibboo” with bassist Tony Markellis and drummer Russ Lawton with the Phish debut coming on September 10, 1999 and 85 additional versions following over the next 21 years.

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“Gotta Jibboo” was premiered by Anastasio, Markellis and Lawton at Higher Ground in Winooski, Vermont on February 15, 1999, during what’s considered the first Trey Anastasio Band show. Then, the three-piece played the song 10 times the following May as part of their debut tour.

Trey brought “Gotta Jibboo” to Phish later in 1999. Despite the trio performances in May, the Phish debut came on the second night of their Fall 1999 tour at The Gorge on September 10, 1999, as the quartet didn’t play the song the previous summer. “Gotta Jibboo” is a staple of the TAB repertoire as for example the group performed the song eight times over the course of their 12-show January 2020 run.

White Denim co-founder James Petralli took an unusual approach to “Gotta Jibboo” for Cluster Flies. Petralli created a dub reggae version of the tune inspired by and using techniques employed by Scientist and Lee “Scratch” Perry. Contributors include Dr. Dog’s Eric Slick, Mike St. Clair and Austin-based band Zero Percent APR as well as Sam Cohen (Apollo Sunshine, Yellowbirds), who produced the cover.

Hear James Petralli’s cover of Phish’s “Gotta Jibboo” for JamBase’s Cluster Flies compilation here:

Phish dominated Petralli’s listening sessions during his junior and senior years of high school. JamBase’s Scott Bernstein spoke with James about his version of “Gotta Jibboo” for Cluster Flies, his Phish fandom, catching the band live at LOCKN’ in 2016 and more.

Stream the “Gotta Jibboo” Cluster Flies episode of The JamBase Podcast below or via all major podcast services including Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher and Google Podcast: