Phish was formed at the University of Vermont in 1983 by Trey Anastasio and Jeff Holdsworth, Mike Gordon, and Jon Fishman. Phish began to self-record their own albums Phish and The Man Who Stepped Into Yesterday) and playing small venues in and around town. Soon came local success and a major record deal was put on the table. In 1990, the band released their first major label album and were soon selling tickets to venues throughout the country!
Phish is famously known for the experimentation of music. Phish is first and foremost a live band – their shows are an eclectic fusion of improvised rock, bluegrass, folk, jazz, and pop that has placed them at the forefront of the modern jam band scene alongside Widespread Panic, String Cheese Incident, Gov’t Mule, and others. During their performances Phish was known for their on-stage antics and jam band style of playing. The drummer, Jon Fishman, even wore a dress on stage for several years while performing.
In 1996, Billy Breathes was released and brought the band international fame. Billy Breathes, which contained their hit single “Free”, is the band’s highest charting album to date, reaching #7 on the Billboard 200. Phish fans across the country began buying tickets to see the jam band live in their town.