‘The Thrill Is Gone,’ B.B. King with Phish at Continental Airlines Arena

The late B.B. King made a surprise appearance at a New Jersey Phish concert in 2003.

The late B.B. King made a surprise appearance at a New Jersey Phish concert in 2003.

B.B. King, who died last night at the age of 89, played with all kinds of musicians, ranging from John Lee Hooker to U2, over the course of his career. Perhaps his most surprising collaboration, though, took place at the Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford in February 2003, when he was an unannounced guest at a Phish concert, and jammed with them on “Everyday I Have the Blues,” “The Thrill Is Gone” and “Rock Me Baby” for almost an hour.

Below is a live recording of one of those songs, “The Thrill Is Gone.”

Phish guitarist and Princeton native Trey Anastasio posted the following message on his website, Trey.com, today: “It’s literally impossible to overstate B.B. King’s influence on every single electric guitarist who followed in his path. All of us who have ever bent a note owe him an enormous debt of gratitude.”

New Jersey celebrated its 350th birthday in 2014. And in the 350 Jersey Songs series, we marked the occasion by posting 350 songs — one a day, from September 2014 to September 2015 — that have something to do with the state, its musical history, or both. To see the entire list, click here.

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