New To YouTube: Phish Visits Ventura County Fairgrounds In 1998

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On July 20, 1998 Phish brought a Summer Tour in which they debuted a slew of covers to Ventura County Fairgrounds in Ventura, California. The band thought highly enough of their performance and their show at the venue one year prior that they issued official recordings as Phish: Ventura in 2013. We now have our first look at some of what went down on July 20, 1998 as a fan-shot video recording of the first set recently surfaced on YouTube.

Phish began their 1998 show in Ventura with a euphoric and wild, 20-minute “Bathtub Gin.” Next up was “Dirt” followed by a “Poor Heart” with an unusual ending similar to the final chords of Lynyrd Sknyrd’s “Free Bird.” The career-spanning set continued with “Lawn Boy” and “My Sweet One” ahead of the new-at-the-time “Birds Of A Feather.” Guitarist Trey Anastasio shined on “Theme From The Bottom” as he led a build to a powerful peak. From there, Phish closed out the set with an upbeat “Water In The Sky,” standard “The Moma Dance” and frenetic “Split Open And Melt.”

Watch the first set of Phish’s July 20, 1998 show in Ventura thanks to Siggy BoPs:

Setlist (via Phish.net)

Set One: Bathtub Gin, Dirt > Poor Heart[1], Lawn Boy, My Sweet One, Birds of a Feather, Theme From the Bottom, Water in the Sky, The Moma Dance, Split Open and Melt

[1] Several false endings, including a Free Bird-style ending.

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