New ‘Guitar World’ Issue Features Trey Anastasio Interview

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The January 2015 issue of Guitar World magazine features an interview with Phish frontman Trey Anastasio. Anastasio also appears on the cover of the issue, which hits newsstands soon and is available for purchase here. Anastasio discusses many topics with journalist Alan Paul including the Fare Thee Well shows, the history and future of Phish and the recent changes to his guitar rig. Within Trey’s chat with Alan, he shared a fascinating story about the “Attics Of My Life” that ended the final Fare Thee Well show with Grateful Dead members Bob Weir, Phil Lesh, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann as well as Jeff Chimenti and Bruce Hornsby on July 5 in Chicago.

Paul asked Anastasio what he learned about preparation from his time writing music for the 2011 Broadway musical Hands On A Hardbody. Trey said he learned a lot and detailed an anecdote from Fare Thee Well:

Here’s one that even Bobby [Weir] and Phil [Lesh] don’t know. The three of us sat down to discuss what to play and Phil said, ‘All I know is, I want to end with ‘Attics of My Life.’ I’m like, ‘Great, I’m crying already, but when are we gonna learn the harmonies?’ Because that song modulates and it’s a capella three-part harmony! I offered to write a chart and they were like, ‘That’s kind of geeky. We’ll figure it out.’ We sat down at a piano and it was cool but I knew everyone would forget his parts and lo and behold, we tried it again and nobody was taking Jerry’s melody.

These guys don’t rehearse much because they don’t really hang out, so we had five days for five shows and never got to ‘Attics.’ Phil said ‘We’ll sing it in soundcheck every day.’ Soundchecks came and went, and we still didn’t know it. So I called [Trey collaborator] Jeff [Tanski] and said, ‘I need an exact transcription of the album version.’ I didn’t even tell the guys. I just handed a copy to Bruce: ‘This is your part and this is my part. I’ll hit the highs and the other guys will fill in the notes.’ I was reading off the chart because I wanted someone to sing the melody!

Anastasio and the band did a fine job with “Attics” which was the emotional high point of the entire run. Here’s audio of “Attics Of My Life” and the accompanying montage:

Pick up a copy of Guitar World to read the full interview with Anastasio.

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