Phish New Orleans Jazz Fest Setlist & Skinny
Phish finally returned to the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in New Orleans, LA this afternoon, 18 years to the day after their first appearance. The Vermonters headlined the second day of action at the Fairgrounds, which marked their first performance in The Crescent City since way back on September 26, 1999. In a Jazz Fest rarity, the quartet was given a three-hour slot that allowed them to play two sets on Saturday afternoon filled with heavy rotation staples.
Phish kicked off their Jazz Fest performance and first full set of 2014 with “Kill Devil Falls” off 2009’s Joy, which for now still stands as the band’s most recently released studio album. “Kill Devil Falls” has been a popular choice to open since it was debuted in 2009, as today’s version marked the 16th time it has opened a show. This afternoon’s take was played close to the vest. After “KDF” guitarist Trey Anastasio noted how excited the band was to play Jazz Fest and then Phish launched into a run of rotation staples -“Moma Dance,” “Rift” and “Wolfman’s Brother.” The fiery “Wolfman’s” jam was propelled by drummer Jon Fishman’s loping beat and gave Anastasio an opportunity to dig into a meaty, straight-forward solo. Keyboardist Page McConnell then moved to center stage to deliver “Lawn Boy.” McConnell also took a moment to express his pleasure at being back in New Orleans and at Jazz Fest.
Trey introduced “Party Time” by telling the crowd the band had a song they always wanted to play at Jazz Fest and noted that Fishman wrote the tune. “Ocelot” led into the first and only cover of the afternoon, “Funky Bitch,” sung as usual by bassist Mike Gordon. The “46 Days” that came next featured some of Anastasio’s best work of the afternoon, but didn’t stray too far from the song’s normal boundaries. After focusing on older material at the start, Phish performed “The Line,” a song that was debuted on Halloween as part of the Wingsuit set. “Character Zero” brought the opening stanza to a close.
After a near 30-minute set break, Phish returned to the stage with “Down With Disease.” The”Disease” opener gave us our first extended jam since New Year’s. McConnell strongly asserted himself throughout the musical conversation as Anastasio followed along with choppy rhythm work. When Trey did take control, he immediately transitioned the jam into “Birds Of A Feather.” From there, the band moved into “Twist,” with Trey teasing “Birds” during the intro. Anastasio also threw out a “Streets Of Cairo” tease in the beginning of his “Birds” solo. Next up were quick romps through “Sparkle” and “Free,” which kept the focus of the second set on songs Phish debuted in the ’90s. “Light” ended the streak of tunes from the ’90s and once again found Page and Trey trading riffs. The quartet switched keys for a segment highlighted by McConnell’s outstanding electric piano stylings. Eventually, the jam melted into a beautiful, ethereal space that the band toyed with for a few minutes before the music faded into silence. As the clock neared the 7 p.m. curfew, Phish rapidly built a short version of “Sand” to a climax. But apparently they weren’t too concerned with the clock since they blew through the curfew with a typically gorgeous “Harry Hood,” the high-energy “Cavern” and the a capella number “Grind.” For the encore, the Vermonters settled on a “Julius” that served as the final song at the Fairgrounds for Day Two of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
Phish Summer Tour 2014 starts on July 1 in Mansfield, MA.
Set One: Kill Devil Falls, The Moma Dance > Rift, Wolfman’s Brother, Lawn Boy, Party Time, Ocelot, Funky Bitch, 46 Days, The Line, Character Zero
Set Two: Down with Disease > Birds of a Feather, Twist, Sparkle, Free, Light, Sand, Harry Hood, Cavern, Grind
 Birds of a Feather tease.
- Venue Type: Outdoor Fairgrounds
- Previous Shows at Venue: 1 Set -04/26/1996
- Number Of Songs / Length – First Set: 11 / 4:06 p.m. -5:21 p.m. (75 Minutes)
- Number Of Songs / Length – Second Set & Encore: 11 / 5:49 -7:19 (90 Minutes)
- Total Number of Songs / Covers / Originals: 22 / 1 / 21
- Biggest Bustout: Party Time -10 Shows (LTP -10/26/2013)
- Average Song Vintage: 1998
- Debuts: N/A
- Weather: 84° and Partly Cloudy at show time
- Average Song Gap: 3
- The Spread: Lawn Boy -1, Picture Of Nectar -1, Rift -2, Hoist -3, Billy Breathes – 2, Story Of The Ghost -2, Farmhouse -1, Round Room -1, Undermind -1, Joy – 3, Misc. -3, Covers -1
- Longest LivePhish Track / Shortest LivePhish Track: Down With Disease 16:40 / Grind 2:40
- Audio: Live Phish
Phish From The Road Photos…