I originally said I thought this was true, but upon further review I am 100 percent positive this is a hoax. In any event, it's worth repeating for the comedic value alone.
The story appears on a website that looks like CNN but isn't. In fact, the pseudo CNN site has two reports for this story, which would not happen. Trust me, I've been a journalist for 15 years and the same story would not appear in two sections of the same news site or newspaper.
As the "story" goes, Fishman was injured while working on a wind turbine on his property in Vermont. Apparently, one of the blades came loose (what is it, built like a ceiling fan??), flew at him and in his attempt to get out of the way he tripped over a chord and tore some ligaments in his foot. From what Trey says he is lucky to be alive, but the quote sourced to Trey reads like it was made up. Fishman was hospitalized, but it's not clear for how long or if he is still admitted as a patient, as the "story" goes.
The "story" also says Phish's Hampton Coliseum shows scheduled for March 6th, 7th and 8th 2009 are being put on hold as it is going to take several months for his injury to heal, although nothing official is posted on the band's website.
C'mon. How stupid does the originator of this "Phish-tale" think we are?
The "article" also quotes Page McConnell talking about the band rehearsing, which is great news if any of this is true, but again I don't believe it for a minute.
News of this was posted at the Phish Coventry Blog back on December 1oth, and people were saying the writer of that Blog was making the story up. If it is true that means he out-scoooped every major news outlet in the U.S., which even more leads me to believe it's not true. Plus, why would three of the four members of Phish be quoted in the story? If this really happened the band would have issued a statement written by their PR person, or possibly even Shelly Culbertson herself.
Besides, the quote from Fishman saying "When I'm all healed up I'm hoping to power the Phish reunion with wind power," is utterly ridiculous. Like the Hampton Coliseum is going to build a wind turbine real quick and put it where? In the parking lot of the hotel across the street or the fence next to the freeway? Or, what, Fishman's going to load one on a truck, drive it down to Virginia and hoist it up himself? Give me a break.
I'll gladly retract my accusations here if this turns out to be true, but I am also willing to bet three tickets to the Hampton run, which I don't have, that it's 100 percent B.S.
One thing that is true, I believe, that whenever they finally play together again, the band is going to be tight -- I'm guessing closer to the middle 1990s Machine-Gun Trey days than the loose and often flubbed performances of songs toward the end. I am sure there will be major rehearsals leading up to Hampton and new material, possibly even an album like they did with Round Room, that comes out of it.
In some other news that is verifiable, Phish just released audio and video of the famous December 30, 1997 show, one of my favorites of all time as it demonstrates how the band was really starting to get comfortable with the funk. And toward the end Trey tells the audience they can go ahead and leave if they want, but the band is going to continue playing funk for a little while. Like anyone would actually split after such an announcement. This show is well worth purchasing, even if you already have an audience-recorded copy of it.
There is also a rumor going around, left here in the comments section of this Blog, that a DVD of the Clifford Ball is slated for release in early 2009. Now that would be cool.