Tom Rush tells fans he has COVID-19

Tom Rush sings his song "The Dreamer" at Peter Simon's memorial service at Chilmark Community Center. — Gabrielle Mannino

Tom Rush, a folk music legend with deep Island roots, has tested positive for COVID-19.

Rush announced the diagnosis on his Twitter account. “I have no idea where I picked it up, but strongly suspect it was sometime after March 11th when I was on my way north from a string of shows in NC, GA, and FLA early in March,” he wrote. “Nonetheless, out of an abundance of caution, if you were at any of the shows listed here, and were shaking hands or taking selfies with me in the lobby during intermission or at the end of the evening, PLEASE be extra-vigilant for symptoms (fever, headache, dry cough, nausea).”

The shows were: March 4, Isis, Asheville, NC; March 5, Eddie’s Attic, Decatur, Georgia; March 7 Lyric Theatre, Stuart, Florida; March 9, Studios, Key West, Florida; and March 10, Kravis Center, West Palm.

He closed his note urging his fans to “be well, stay well!”

Rush did not indicate where he is now in the tweets.

In a 2018 interview with The Times, Rush talked about his deep roots on Martha’s Vineyard. He began coming to the Island to spend summers with his aunt in West Tisbury when he was 16 or 17 years old. He would perform at the Chilmark Community Center and at the Chilmark Tavern. The interview was done ahead of his performance at the Old Whaling Church in Edgartown that summer. In 2019, Rush performed at the memorial service of his long-time friend, Peter Simon.


  1. Tom Rush and Jackson Brown test positive.
    John Prine in critical condition:
    I don’t like this virus —

  2. Terrible news. Tom is a great guy whose humor is as entertaining as his music.
    Wishing him a speedy recovery.

      • Jacxkie and Hanley– perhaps a little before my time or place. but, Hanley, you are correct– we all have something in common. Thanks, Jackie, for that share—
        Thanks Hanley for pointing out our shared experience, and our commonality.
        we are all in this together..
        Have faith in whatever god you subscribe to, but please, be cautious, be safe, and care for each other.

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