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Viva Phish Vegas: Legendary jam band announces spring Sphere shows

Updated November 30, 2023 - 7:21 pm

Trey Anastasio has already tested the tech for the Sphere.

He and his band, Phish, are going live at the venue in April.

The band announced on social media it planning to play the bulbous wonder for four shows April 18-21. A ticket request period is found at tickets.phish.com, ending 9 a.m. Pacific time Dec. 11. General on-sales are 10 a.m. Dec. 15. Complete ticketing info can be found at phish.com/tours/sphere-2024.

The jam band with the devoted, worldwide following follows U2 as the second announced act at the Sphere. Every Phish experience is to be different, with a unique set list and accompanying production wizardry each night.

The band is known for slipping into a “musical costume” for Halloween, playing such a show at MGM Grand Garden in 2016. David Bowie’s “The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and The Spiders From Mars” was unleashed that night.

The April dates will be the only Phish shows at the Sphere in 2024. Anastasio plans to make them count.

“From the moment we first heard about Sphere and its potential, we’ve been dreaming up ways to bring our show to this breathtaking canvas,” Anastasio, Phish’s front man and guitarist, said in a statement Thursday. “We’re thrilled to present this completely unique experience to Phish fans.”

Anastasio tested the the Sphere Immersive Sound system, by the German company Holoplot, at a performance at Beacon Theatre in August 2022. MSG Entertainment operates both venues.

Phish had been rumored to play the Sphere over New Year’s Eve but instead is returning to a series at Madison Square Garden, another MSG Entertainment venue.

At the moment, the Sphere has no NYE headliner. Its Exosphere is playing the “Christmas Spectacular” from the Radio City Rockettes through Jan. 1.

Phish is not the only jam band in conversation at the Sphere.

Word around the entertainment industry is Dead & Company is to play the Sphere this summer. The band is led by ex-Grateful Dead members Bob Weir and Mickey Hart and joined by John Mayer, Oteil Burbridge, Jeff Chimenti and Jay Lane.

Harry Styles is also a strong candidate to play the venue, having taken in a U2 performance this month and meeting with officials at the venue. His series, originally speculated to be in March, is reportedly being worked out according to his schedule.

Styles would likely play the Sphere in the fall at the earliest. He and U2 are managed by Irving Azoff’s Full Stop Management entertainment company. Reportedly working as a booking consultant, Azoff is said to be very interested in Styles playing the Sphere in ‘24.

Phish’s legions of fans makes that band a natural to play the 20,000-capacity venue. Joining Anastasio are Jon Fishman (drums, vocals), Mike Gordon (bass, vocals), and Page McConnell (keyboards, vocals).

The band has celebrated its 40th anniversary of forming in Burlington, Vermont, in 1983.

Known for whimsical song writing and performances, lengthy improvisational jams and a blend of genres, Phish has issued 15 studio albums between 1989’s “Junta” and 2020’s “Sigma Oasis.”

John Katsilometes’ column runs daily in the A section. His “PodKats!” podcast can be found at reviewjournal.com/podcasts. Contact him at jkatsilometes@reviewjournal.com. Follow @johnnykats on X, @JohnnyKats1 on Instagram.

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