Former Phish Crew Member Leigh Fordham Dies
Former Phish crew member Leigh Fordham died on Sunday in a truck accident according to one of his friends and one-time roommate. Phish guitarist Trey Anastasio issued a statement about his former employee and longtime friend.
Fordham is perhaps best known to Phish fans for a reference to him in the opening line of the Round Room track “46 Days.” Additionally, Leigh appeared during Phish’s performance of Quadrophenia at Rosemont Horizon near Chicago on October 31, 1995. The crew member dressed as a bell boy and sang the part originally sung by The Who drummer Keith Moon in “Bell Boy.” Further references to Fordham took place on November 16, 1996 in Omaha, Nebraska after Leigh fixed a broken light fixture during setbreak. Anastasio changed the lyrics to “Harry Hood” to include numerous mentions of the lighting crew member.
Here’s the statement Trey Anastasio posted about the passing of Leigh Fordham:
I was so sad to hear about the passing of our friend and beloved former crew member Leigh Fordham. Leigh was truly a great guy, funny and cool, and he and I spent some long late nights hanging out on tour, and I have such great memories of those nights. I wrote the lyrics to 46 days on one of those nights, and I think I was just tapping into the feel and the spirit of those hangs, but I always felt a little weird singing that line, because the honest truth is that not only didn’t Leigh ever sell me out, he was probably the last guy on earth who would ever sell anyone out. He was a truly cool guy, and he asked about it a couple times. He was Australian, so I think he said something like “Hey Mate, I never sold you out!” and I replied, “but it’s such a cool line!” so we laughed and it stayed in.
Leigh’s spirit was a huge part of our Phish family when he was on the road with us. He always made me smile when I’d see him at soundcheck. He will be missed. Our love goes out to Leigh’s family today.
JamBase sends its thoughts to Leigh’s friends and family.