Phish Friday: The Top 15 Bustouts, Part 2 – The Originals

After a few weeks off from Phish Friday, I’m back at you with the second and final installment of historic bust-outs. Which perhaps begs the question, why do we even care about bust outs? Well, for a rabid community that follows their band’s every move and mulls over every statistic with encyclopedic knowledge, the bustout carries larger than normal amounts of significance — something communal that both the band and their fans can acknowledge is a BIG EFFING DEAL. As Adam Scheinberg so eloquently put it in his Phish.net blog post earlier this month:

Most people won’t agree ..[on]…the “best” jams, but certainly, no one will argue that a bustout is a bustout when a song returns from dormancy. So it’s a common ground, easy for fans and the band to agree on, that makes an event unique and therefore, special. Harpua will always be the sign of a show we’ll remember, but that doesn’t mean we’ll all be listening to it on repeat.

So true. To use Adam’s example, the 7/29/03 Harpua wasn’t all that well executed, but you better believe I was on cloud nine and high fiving everyone around me while they were playing it. Yes, bustouts aren’t always musically appealing, and they sure as hell won’t contain the hose or IT, but they almost always automatically up the ante in the heat of the moment at a show. Sometimes they’re the gravy on an already killer set, and sometimes they can redeem a show without too much else going for it, but whatever the case, it’s always a huge jolt.

And so with that sentiment at heart, I tried to pick the 15 originals that were some of the most special moments and reintroductions to old favorites (and not-so-favorites) in the band’s history. Again, I picked and ranked these 15 selections by my own subjective sense of overall quality, which I’ve defined with a patented scientific algorithm consisting of the length of the gap since the song was last played, and the importance/significance of the bustout to the band and its audience. So without further adieu…

The Top 15 Bustouts, Part 2: The Originals

#15: “Brother” (8.17.96 – first since 8.2.93, 258 shows)
Not only was this by far this biggest bustout (and save the unfinished Harpua, essentially the only one) at ’s first ever festival, but it also featured my favorite ice cream purveyors, Ben & Jerry, on vocals. And despite what now seems to be becoming a Father’s Day tradition, Brother remains a relative rarity to this day.