Trey Anastasio Changes Lyric For San Francisco ‘Limb By Limb’

By Scott Bernstein Jul 19, 2016 10:57 am PDT

Last night, Phish kicked off a three-night stand at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco. While we have already shared a full recap, a look at the setlist, photos from the show, a handful of videos and of course The Skinny, there’s one other moment which took place on Monday night – which also marked the start of the GOP Convention in Cleveland – worth mentioning.

During last night’s “Limb By Limb,” guitarist vocalist Trey Anastasio either showed a fondness for the Asian country or took a subtle stab at likely Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump when he yelled “China!” at the 2:42 mark after the normal “drop me off the Chinese wall” lyric.

When Trump first started running he liked to talk about China…a lot. In fact, Huffington Post put together a mashup showing Trump saying “China” 234 different times. Watch:

Listen to last night’s “Limb By Limb” taped by Chris King and head to 2:42:

While Phish drummer Jon Fishman has actively campaigned for former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, Trey usually keeps his opinions to himself when it comes to politics. He was asked his take in a recent Rolling Stone interview:

I’m a lot quieter than Fish when it comes to that. It’s a funny thing. I definitely am watching just as much as everybody else is every night. It’s just the way I’ve always felt. I try really hard to keep my mouth shut when it comes to politics. And I always admired Jimi Hendrix, who would say he didn’t really want to go there. Fish was asking me about it. And I’m from Burlington, so say no more. But if you look closely, I’ve kind of kept my mouth shut about it. And there’s this quote by Jimi Hendrix that I love. I have it in my phone. A Danish journalist invoked the Rolling Stones’ “Street Fighting Man” to ask Jimi Hendrix if he was in favor of “the revolution.” Hendrix replied, “No, I’m not. At one point you have to choose: the revolution or Frank Sinatra. For me, it was always Frank Sinatra. I want to show people a lot of things. With t-h-i-s.” And then, at that point, Jimi Hendrix picked up his guitar and began to play.

I’m watching with curiosity, but I have a very strong resistance to musicians taking a side. Because I feel like music is the one thing in my life that, when the band is playing, it feels so spiritual and so open to inviting everyone into the party that anything where it sounds like I’m being the thought police, or Phish as a band, as an entity, where it’s like, “You should think this way,” or “You should vote for this guy.” Or “If you love Ted Cruz, you should feel bad.” I don’t feel that way. I feel like what we do for a living is by its nature the antidote to that kind of thing, that this is a place where you come for spirit and not politics. So that’s why, if you actually look closely, I haven’t publicly supported anyone.

Trey did have fun with a former vice presidential candidate when he used a device that played samples of Sarah Palin saying “Alaska” and other quotes during a version of “Alaska” in Worcester on December 28, 2010. Watch how that “Alaska” went down thanks to videographer Silverchair97:


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Phish returns to the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco tonight.

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