Will It Go Round in Circles

Originally Performed ByBilly Preston
Original AlbumMusic Is My Life (1972)
Music/LyricsBrice Fisher, Billy Preston
Phish Debut1999-09-10
Last Played1999-09-21
Current Gap800
HistorianPhillip Zerbo (pzerbo); Scott Marks (Bizarro_Jerry)
Last Update2019-06-01


The members of Phish have long been known to have a special reverence for 70s R&B, Soul, and Funk, from Stevie Wonder to James Brown to Bootsy Collins. In 1999 they dipped into this rich reservoir once again, reviving the Billy Preston hit tune “Will it Go Round in Circles”

Billy Preston, "Will It Go Round in Circles"

Phish first performed “Will it Go Round in Circles” on 9/10/99, to end the first set at the majestic Gorge Amphitheatre. While many fans hoped the cover would stick in the live repertoire, “Will it Go Round in Circles” has made only one other appearance to date, later during that same tour on 9/21/99 in Tucson, AZ.

“Will it Go Round in Circles” made its first entry into the Phish universe during Trey’s May 1999 TAB tour, debuting on 5/3/99 at the Michigan Theatre in Ann Arbor. Along with Tony Markellis on bass and Russ Lawton on drums, Trey performed this tune during the electric set in more than half of the shows on that tour. While the song quickly dropped from Phish’s repertoire, “Circles” remained in Trey’s setlists through 2006, culiminating in an appearance on 12/30/06 in Atlantic City before vanishing for over 12 years until its return on 5/31/19 in Atlanta, GA. Trey also performed “Will it Go Round in Circles” during the winter ’03-’04 Dave Matthews & Friends tour.

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