Looking Back: Phish Reunited On This Day In 2009 March 6, 2017 11:54
It's hard to believe that it has been a full eight years, but today marks the anniversary of the first night of Phish's return from a five-year hiatus. After performing three songs together at the September 2008 wedding of their former tour-road manager, Phish announced that they would perform three reunion shows on March 6, 7, and 8, 2009, at the Hampton Coliseum in Hampton, Virginia. Following the reunion weekend, the band played thirteen shows of a summer tour, including an inaugural concert at Fenway Park and headlining Bonnaroo 2009 in June with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Beastie Boys, Nine Inch Nails, along with many others. Phish has since continued to tour and sell out venues across the country, host three of its own festivals (Festival 8, SuperBall, MagnaBall), and begin annual traditions such as Labor Day weekend at Dick's Sporting Goods Park (Commerce City, CO) and a January destination weekend in Riviera Maya, Mexico.
Phish’s first public performance since Coventry on August 15, 2004 started with Fluffhead, a song not played since prior to the first hiatus on September 29, 2000 (70 shows). Also of note, several large, white balloons were hung in a circle around the coliseum, lit up by an additional central lighting rig; the balloons (save for a few casualties) would remain for the entire run. Trey introduced Fish as “Dad” during I Didn’t Know. Train Song was not played since May 23, 2000 (111 shows) and Grind was not played since December 30, 1998 (181 shows). During Bouncing, some of the balloons were dripped into the crowd. This show featured the Phish debut of Backwards Down the Number Line. YEM featured a false start possibly as a nod to the January 3, 2003 restarted version.
Setlist and notes via Phish.net:
SET 1: Fluffhead, Divided Sky, Chalk Dust Torture > Sample in a Jar, Stash, I Didn't Know, The Oh Kee Pa Ceremony >Suzy Greenberg > Farmhouse, NICU, Horn > Rift, Train Song, Water in the Sky, The Squirming Coil > David Bowie
See below for multiple videos of Phish performing "Fluffhead" as the opening song: