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Sugar Shack

Sugar Shack has not been seen in 31 Phish shows.
It was last played: 2023-07-29.
It was played at 1.6% of live shows.
It has been performed live 32 time(s).

Music/Lyrics: Gordon

Vocals: Mike

Debut: 2009-06-07

Historian: Elayne Best (jugglerswithfire)

This song was originally written by Mike in October of 2007. As Mike revealed in an interview, he had full intentions of putting it on his next solo album, but had the enjoyable experience of watching his song go through an evolutionary process morphing into musically what is one of the funkier tracks on Joy. The opening lyrics of "Sugar Shack" are a bit dark, "Standing on the edge of a cliff / I start to slip / Don't mind if I slide off." This is contrasted by the light-hearted Caribbean-calypso chorus and melody (strongly reminiscent of "Ya Mar") that provide an easy-going groove that fans love. Is it possible that Mike envisioned the shack to look something like this?

As Mike himself noted, the debut of this song was not well executed, but thankfully the potential of this song was realized during track selection for Joy. Since the debut, "Sugar Shack" Trey has had some issues technically executing “Sugar Shack”. The band struggled through the song making small improvements over the course of 2010, trying to hone the ending technical section. “Sugar Shack” was not played at all in 2011, leaving many fans wondering Phish may have shelved it for good.

On the night of 8/18/12 , there were many rumors pre-show of “extra practice” and potential special guests at night two of the Bill Graham run. It turned out there were no extra guests onstage that night, but the band did rehearse “Sugar Shack” during soundcheck. The results produced one of Phish’s finer performances of the song live." target="_blank">Watch Sugar Shack on YouTube ”Sugar Shack” - 8/18/12 San Francisco, CA

"Sugar Shack" continues to shine in the repertoire of Mike Gordon’s band

Watch Sugar Shack on YouTube Mike Gordon, "Sugar Shack" – 3/25/11, Falls Church, VA

Another must hear is the “Sugar Shack” themed show 12/9/11 at the Met in Pawtucket, RI. Listen to the whole show truly amazing.

Albums: Joy, The Egg


© Who Is She? Music, BMI

Standing on the edge of a cliff
I start to slip
Don’t mind if I slide off
Now I feel my mood start to lift
I find my grip
And the screaming fades away below

I grab myself and spin me around
I start to sprint
I climb down to steadier ground
If I could bushwhack it on back to the shack
Behind those hills
I’ll find the world is finally still

Run through pale dark woods
To that sugar shack
Breathe warm steam and hide
In that old sugar shack

Boiling heat
Maple steam
Frozen snow
Then it flows
When you leave
Your maple dream
Wait ‘til spring
To go again

A mosaic of lies
I tried to arrange
In ways that shelter the blame
I thought I might have made off clear
With all of the loot
I plucked and ate all the fruit

Then I started hearing the yells
And shattering plates
Drowned out by your slithering stares
I was followed and chased
And caught and tied up by the hate
Right until I made my escape

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