Twenty Years Later: Jeff Austin Band Covers Phish’s ‘Waste’
Following last year’s successful Songs Of Their Own video series of artists covering songs by the Grateful Dead, the Twenty Years Later video series features some of JamBase’s favorite musicians recording songs released in 1996. Looking back, the music released 20 years ago proved to be critical in both rock ‘n’ roll history and particularly within the jam band scene. The year 1996 saw seminal albums released by Phish, Dave Matthews Band, Bela Fleck and The Flecktones, moe., The String Cheese Incident, the Disco Biscuits, Keller Williams, Galactic, Medeski Martin & Wood, God Street Wine, Strangefolk and The Slip, helping to solidify the maturing jam scene.
There were also influential records issued in 1996 by the likes of artists as diverse as Beck, Jamiroquai, Modest Mouse, Rage Against The Machine, Johnny Cash, Pearl Jam, Sting, Tool, 2Pac and many others. The Twenty Years Later video series takes a look back at those releases, with participating artists covering songs from albums turning 20 this year. For this installment, Jeff Austin Band saw their way through Phish’s “Waste.”
Making its live debut on June 6, 1996 at the unannounced “Third Ball” show at Joyous Lake in Woodstock, New York, the Trey Anastasio/Tom Marshall ballad was included on Phish’s 1996 LP Billy Breathes. Initially played acoustic on the mini stage that frequented shows that summer, it quickly became staple of Phish’s setlists – though since the band returned from hiatus in 2009 it’s become a rarity. Now totaling over 70 live renditions, “Waste” has been performed just twice a year dating back to 2011, having last appeared at the first night of the Magnaball festival on August 21, 2015.
In the area for a recent show at Great American Music Hall, the Jeff Austin Band stopped by the JamBase offices in San Francisco for a pair of performances. The JAB covered “Waste” and also treated us to a rendition of the original “Underground.” Austin was backed by banjoist Ryan Cavanaugh, bassist Max Johnson and guitarist Ross Martin – aka the current Jeff Austin Band lineup – for his visit to JamBase HQ. Both performances can be viewed below: