20-20 Vision

Originally Performed ByGene Autry
Original AlbumSingle (1954)
MusicJoe Allison
Lyrics ByMilton Estes
VocalsMike (lead), Page, Trey (backing)
Phish Debut2019-12-28
Last Played2019-12-28
Current Gap8
HistorianLance Judd (ThinkSnow)
Last Update2020-05-21

History

The country bluegrass classic, "20-20 Vision" was first recorded by Gene Autry (aka The Singing Cowboy) in 1957. This ophthalmology-focused lamentation of infidelity made its Phish debut on 12/28/19 during the MSG New Year’s run.

The tune examines the irony and disbelief of an eye doctor’s positive “all right” diagnosis in contrast to the despondent and painfully blind eyes of the narrator’s mind and heart when his wicked, cheating lover scorns him for another. Alas we learn, there is no line 6 on a Snellen eye chart for the “eyes of your heart.”

Curious and discerning researchers will find notable online versions by artists ranging from Bob Dylan and Bruce Hornsby to several outstanding takes from Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder. Should you find that you and/or your seeing-eye dog are having a particularly rough day, please allow us to suggest the beautiful and haunting interpretation by folk singer Kate Wolf.

Phish ”20-20 Vision” – 12/28/19, New York, NY. Video by Larry Rulz III

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