The secret language
is a Phish
language and way of communicating between band and audience that goes beyond what any other act would even try! :)
The first language show was 3.6.92 at Portsmouth
introduces the main four signals (scream Doh!
like Homer Simpson
, fall down on the floor (or at least crouch; sing a random note, turn around and face the back of the room, and scream "ow, fuck!
" like your fingers been cut off).
He also says that the signals can come from Page
, so that they should listen up. (Has anyone heard Page or Mike do one?) Fishman
is reportedly not allowed to signal the secret language because he talks too much already.
Where appears: You may hear the language in "Possum", "Wilson", "Antelope", "Maze", or "David Bowie".
Origin and Forms: The "language" grew out of a system of signals among band members to covertly say such helpful things as "stop playing this song" or "look at that person" or "this is what we'll play next" or...
Trey says there were about 20
of them. If you listen to old tapes, you may be able to pick up on some common riffs, themes, and teases. It isn't certain which, if any, were/are actually intra-band signals, but some possibilities include:
the "Linus and Lucy Theme
" (from The Peanuts
, eg during 4-18-92 "Harry Hood
the Woody Woodpecker
theme (e.g. 5-13-94 Mike's Song
"Me and My Shadow" (aka the "Asshole in Front" signal)
the Star Wars
theme (e.g. during 8-2-96 "Antelope
; and during the 11-26-94 "Slave
" which is on A Live One
the theme to "All in the Family
" (during "Divided Sky
", and "Mike's Groove
" on 11-19-92)
the theme to Mission Impossible
(during the 10-23-94 YEM
and the 6/17/94 Mike's Groove)
the James Bond 007
theme (5-13-94 YEM; 11/19/95 Mike's Song)
The Rolling Stones
Waits For No One" (e.g. teased by Trey a few minutes into the 11/21/97 Ghost
"The Street Beater" by Quincy Jones
(aka "Theme to Sanford and Son
The "oh and he was a wonderful whiz if ever a whiz there was" line (on guitar) from "Yellow Brick Road
" in The Wizards of Oz
, e.g. in YEM on 3-25-92.
various repeated teases (esp. "Spookey"; and "Foxy Lady
" eg between "2001
" and "Character Zero
" at 11-26-97) and spirals
one that ends in "Awwwwwwwwwww, Fuck!
" (e.g. 4/21/92 I in Possum
six notes really fast, to which the band responds by bursting out in laughter (e.g. during Possum at 4/16/92)
#1) MASS HYSTERIA
If Trey holds up a sign that says "Mass Hysteria" it means you should scream hysterically. Imagine turning on your radio and hearing six thousand people screaming in terror... sort of a War of the Worlds
#2) FOOT STOMP Instead of cheering or clapping, you would stomp your feet. (Again... imagein this times six thousand)
When trey holds up this sign and then points up you would "yay" and when he points down you would "boo". Alternating quickly between these two would be pretty surreal.
This would mean that Trey would raise his arm and when he drops it, you would scream "Eggplant!"
#5) ONE CLAP
When Trey holds up this sign, do nothing until he first raises his arm, then drops it, at which point you would clap _once_ loudly. That way we can do something like introduce Paul and the whole crowd will clap once in unison. (Very strange to the listener.)
#6) LIP-FLOP You would flop your lips with your finger while humming (x 6000 people.)
Everyone would snap their fingers to no particular rhythm... sort of a white noist snapping thing.
This means whistle a random note.
for the skinny