Flashback: Phish Wraps 2003 Winter Tour In Greensboro

By Andy Kahn Mar 1, 2016 9:48 am PST

Thirteen years ago tonight Phish capped their first full tour since returning from a hiatus initiated in the fall of 2000. The quartet’s 12-show Winter Tour of 2003 spanned both coasts, starting in Los Angeles on February 14 and wrapping up on March 1 at Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, North Carolina. Serving up over three hours of music, fans in attendance – including those who made the lengthy trek after the show at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York the night before – were treated to a memorable finale.

Phish’s still-to-date lone appearance at the Tar Heel state arena began with common opener “Chalk Dust Torture.” The mid-first set “Lawn Boy” saw Page McConnell step from behind his keys to atypically utilize guitarist Trey Anastasio’s microphone. Later in the set, just the sixth live rendition of “Waves” was followed by the closing “Sample In A Jar.”

With a looseness of a final set of a tour finale, the second half was both fun and rocking. Opener “Rock And Roll” got off to a quick jam segment before the familiar opening riff of “Wilson” kept the energy roaring. Next came “Piper” which caught Anastasio hinting at “Oye Como Va” during the well-jammed second set highlight. The smooth transitions between the funky linking of “2001” > “Wolfman’s Brother” and its subsequently slick segue into “Boogie On Reggae Woman” were followed by the McConnell-led ballad “Wading In The Velvet Sea.” A boisterous “Run Like An Antelope” seemingly presented as the set closer, instead was trailed by a bust out of the locale-appropriate acapella “Carolina” – performed for the first time since 1998, a 144 show gap.

Drummer Jon Fishman and bassist Mike Gordon propelled the energy-raising “First Tube” that started the encore. Not quite ready to call it quits on the show or the tour, Phish dropped a mega “You Enjoy Myself” after “First Tube” that included more “Oye Como Va” vamping and some “Another One Bites The Dust” thrown in as well. The “YEM” vocal jam eventually developed into an acapella take on “Proud Mary” finally drawing to a close almost two hours from the start of the second set.

Top-notch audience-shot video of the show that went down 13 years ago today has been posted to YouTube by BurningShoreProphet2 and can be seen below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pB1xCu4LC7g https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QbWb2bd4LfQ
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