“A fun and gripping detective caper filled with cosmic punchlines, stoned heroes, stoned villains, and mysteries dark and heady. Fauth has a smart and familiar narrative voice with a third eye for noir-y detail.”
— Jesse Jarnow, Heads: A Biography of Psychedelic America

The Ashakiran Tape by Jürgen Fauth
The Ashakiran Tape by Jürgen Fauth

From the author of the historical thriller Kino, a “fast, complex, exhilarating roadster ride through history and time” (Frederick Barthelme) comes a gripping psychedelic mystery set in the world of obsessive Phish fans.

When legendary improvisational rock band Phish returns to the stage after a five-year breakup, longtime fan and hardboiled hippie sleuth Quentin Pfeiffer has to be there — even though he is older, wiser, and the father of an adorable baby daughter now.

But not everything is sunshine and rainbows in the freewheeling circus surrounding the band’s summer tour: after the millionaire skipper of a drug-drenched luxury yacht goes missing, Q and his crew are drawn into a dangerous intrigue of dreadlocked dames, shady tape collectors, and spun-out wookies chasing after the long-lost recording of a mysterious late-night jam.

Inspired by Raymond Chandler and set during a series of concerts at Long Island’s Jones Beach amphitheater, The Ashakiran Tape takes readers deep into the spiraling ecstasy of Phish’s epic shows and the seductive underworld of the obsessive fans following them.

The Ashakiran Tape is now available as paperback and ebook.

Read the fucking book! — Trey Anastasio

Now available!

Each installment of Head Cases will be set at a different show or run. The Ashakiran Tape is set at the June 2-5, 2009 Phish shows at Jones Beach Amphitheater. Here are the setlists:

Tuesday, 06/02/2009 – Jones Beach Theater, Wantagh, NY

Set 1: Runaway Jim, Foam, Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, Timber (Jerry), Cities, Driver, Reba, Possum, Farmhouse, If I Could

Set 2: Mike’s Song > Simple > Wolfman’s Brother -> Weekapaug Groove, When the Circus Comes, Kill Devil Falls, Harry Hood > Loving Cup

Encore: Suzy Greenberg

Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan and Kill Devil Falls both debuted at this show, with the latter, remarkably, being played by request. This show featured the first If I Could since June 28, 2000 (103 shows).

Thursday, 06/04/2009 – Jones Beach Theater, Wantagh, NY

Set 1: Grind, Divided Sky, Ocelot, The Squirming Coil, Punch You In the Eye, Dirt, NICU, Ghost, Run Like an Antelope

Set 2: Water in the Sky, Birds of a Feather, Drowned > Meatstick, Time Turns Elastic, Waste, You Enjoy Myself

Encore: Rock and Roll

Drowned featured a Jumpin’ Jack Flash tease. Meatstick was played in a different key than normal.

Friday, 06/05/2009 – Jones Beach Theater, Wantagh, NY

Set 1: Wilson, Buried Alive, Kill Devil Falls, AC/DC Bag, I Didn’t Know, My Friend, My Friend, Ya Mar, Theme From the Bottom, Boogie On Reggae Woman, Split Open and Melt

Set 2: Down with Disease -> Twist > Piper > Backwards Down the Number Line, Free, Twenty Years Later > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Slave to the Traffic Light

Encore: A Day in the Life

During I Didn’t Know, Trey introduced Fish as “Little Junior Moses Brown Heaps DeWitt” and commented that he was going to “suck all of the moisture out of the air.” During Ya Mar, Page teased It’s Raining, It’s Pouring. Trey teased Flat Fee prior to Disease, which was unfinished. Twist featured an Oye Como Va jam. This show marked the debut of Twenty Years Later.

Setlists and notes via Phish.net.

Jürgen Fauth‘s first Phish show was 4/26/96, New Orleans Jazzfest. He’s seen the band 70 times since, and he’s written about Coventry for Jambands.com. Jürgen bears the distinction of being “for better or worse, the only person to ever provoke Robert Hunter to write a semi-formal explanation of one of his songs” (Jesse Jarnow).