Music/Lyrics: Anastasio, Brendan O'Brien
Original Artist: Trey Anastasio
Original Album: Shine (2005)
Historian: Jeremy Welsh
Last Update: 2011-07-27
"Sleep Again" had its live debut on 8/4/05 during a Trey Anastasio Band performance in Boston, one of three songs debuted that evening that would later be released Shine, Trey's first solo release after Phish's break-up in 2004. As with a number of songs from that effort, "Sleep Again" is about looking forward, knowing that something better is in the future. "Sleep Again" is subtle and paced – rather than alluding to forgetting, removing yourself from a situation, "to sleep" in "Sleep Again" is about rejuvenation and rebirth. "Slow slow, my brother / You will sleep again / Long long, when it passes / You will breathe again." One needs to rest, sleep, before you can start breathing. Then you can "live again."
A staple in Trey's solo shows, "Sleep Again" is the only song from Shine that Phish has played. The song's first of four appearances came during Festival 8's noon-time acoustic set on 11/1/09. The song fit perfectly in the intimate setting of Phish's "first full-length acoustic set" and featured an extended piano solo from Page; this was followed by electric performances on 11/25/09 in Philly, 6/20/10 at SPAC, and 8/7/10 at The Greek. "Sleep Again" was also played as part of the Super Ball IX soundcheck on 6/30/11.
For a solo acoustic rendition, check out the following from 11/22/06, an in-store appearance by Trey at Twist & Shout in Denver.
After six years of slowing down, sleeping, and breathing, Phish began to live again.