a Project of the Mockingbird Foundation

Performances Song History Lyrics

Mexican Cousin

Music/Lyrics: Anastasio/Marshall

Vocals: Trey

Albums: Round Room

Debut: 2003-01-02

Historian: Martin Acaster (Doctor_Smarty)

Oh Tequila, the oldest distilled beverage originating in North America, is perhaps the best known export of Mexico. By strict regulations, to be considered Tequila, the liquor in question must be distilled from at least 51% Agave Azul (Blue Agave) somewhere in the Mexican state of Jalisco. The reputations of no other liquids are imbued with quite as much legend, mythology, and misinformation as Tequila and its “Mexican Cousin” Mezcal. Most notably, the Blue Agave, unlike Mike Gordon, is not a cactus; it is a species of lily. The Gusano Rojo (red, red worm) your bottle may contain, unlike “Piper,” is not psychoactive; eating the worm is therefore just a supplement of protein and/or machismo. Yet mysteriously, the vigorous consumption of Tequila results in a form of intoxication that is quite unlike simple drunkenness. This state is simultaneously celebrated and bemoaned in the lyrics of “Mexican Cousin.”

This hilarious tune released on Round Room is obviously inspired by a Tequila-fueled bender, perhaps the one that included the Louise regaled on Trey’s “Cayman Review.” With its salt-encrusted tongue implanted firmly in its lime-soaked cheek, “Mexican Cousin” covers every emotion from happiness to sorrow. It is unapologetic and coarse, much like the actions Tequila can inspire; so if you can’t take it, either get lost or give me a kiss. Musically it treads on somewhat “Waste(d)” ground. 

“Mexican Cousin” debuted to a warm welcome at the Hampton Coliseum as the encore on 1/2/03. Subsequent shots served during the 2003 winter tour (2/18/03 Denver and 2/28/03 Nassau Coliseum) were also nightcaps. With the heat upon us, the “Mexican Cousin” was mixed into early evening first-set cocktails during the two performances that followed (7/12/03 Gorge and 7/26/03 Atlanta). Surprisingly, considering the celebratory nature of the Two-by-Four runs that followed, the Tequila bottle remained shelved for the duration of 2003. There was a single 2004 serving in Mansfield (8/11/04) just prior to the "last shows" at Coventry. 

During the Phish break-up, Trey turned to it like a long lost friend and stepped up to the bar for a solo acoustic version at his 8/10/05 Lakefront Pavilion show. The following year some reposado shots of "Mexican Cousin" were also served up during three successive stops (7/15/06 Atlanta, 7/16/06 Nashville, and 7/18/06 Toronto) on the GRAB tour in Summer 2006. Each of these performances featured Mike on electric banjo and Trey on acoustic guitar. 

Following Phish's 2009 return, the Tequila has been poured during three trips to the southeast (3/7/09 Hampton, 7/2/10 Charlotte and 10/15/10 Charleston) but has otherwise remained safely ensconced in the liquor cabinet.

"Mexican Cousin" 7/2/10 Charlotte, NC

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