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Is Phish Hinting At A Hawaiian Island Festival?

With Phish 2014 summer tour dates having been announced – and many of our West Coast brethren voicing their complaints, in hoping this was just the initial announcement, as no dates were released way out west, other than in Colorado – we now have had a day to plan which dates we can skip out of work from, put in for our ticket requests, reserve hotel rooms, and let our hearts get back to a normal beat. Or, can we?

Along with the announcement came a video. Not that this is the first time we have received a tour announcement video, nor are we strangers to Phish doing something quirky with just about anything they do, but this particular video was rather mysterious. As a helicopter lands on a helipad, a young, well-dressed man exits the chopper, walks up to the camera, makes a statement in Chinese, while holding up a letter that is written in the language, and then lights up the piece of paper as if “this letter will self-destruct in 10…9…8…” in Inspector Gadget fashion. As the opening lick of “Carini” begins to play, he lets the letter fly away, walks back to the helicopter, and leaves just as quickly as he came, with summer tour dates coming up on the screen and our eyes bugging out of our heads in anticipation.

Now, we got the dates, but what does the letter say? That is the real question.

Well, according to a translation that has appeared on imgur.com, we have learned the following:

Here is what you must do. You must go to the edge of the city. There, you will find him. He will not be like you hope. In fact, he might even be someone you wouldn’t look at. He might look like a kind of bush, or a reporter for the local real estate company. But it is him. Ask him something. He will say, “What is it?” You will say “You know… like we discussed.” It’s very important that you use these words. He will temporarily disappear. Although he is leaving, you will examine your phone. Perhaps you exclaim something about the weather. Then he will return your target. Exchanging the target, you will give him a signed copy of the novel “Hawaii” by James Michener. The signature must be from a child pretending he is James Michener. Once you have your target, flip this page over in order to understand how to rescue our species from extinction. Thanks! You really helped us a solid here.”

So, are we being lead to believe that the next Phish festival will be held in Hawaii?!?!?! And, if not, what is all this James Michener’s Hawaii hubbub about? Why does the helicoper land on a “10”? Does that stand for Festival 10? Phish had previously attempted to hold a festival in Hawaii back in 1999 at Kualoa Ranch but had to cancel due to logistics.

We, the fans, have been duped by our favorite quartet from Vermont before. There has always been hints, and tricks, and most certainly plenty of treats (and even a Wingsuit). So what are we to think? Do we need to start saving for a massive trip to the 50th state in the union? With so many of our favorite bands setting their sights on destination style festivals, it would certainly make sense.  It would also probably be the most intimate Phish shows in 20+ years, as a trip to Hawaii is rather expensive. We would be surprised if there were more than 15,000+ fans making the trek over to the Aloha State. Though, you never know. And people thought Festival 8 was intimate.

I guess we’ll just have to wait to find out.

One other thing, that security detail in the far left corner of the screen sure looks a lot like Jon Fishman. Just sayin’….

– Chris Meyer