Legendary singer-songwriter Neil Diamond has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and will cease touring immediately, according to a statement released Monday night. Diamond, 76, still plans to write and record music.
“The onset of the disease has made it difficult to travel and perform on a large scale basis,” the statement notes. Diamond, who was amidst a 50th anniversary tour, was ordered off the road by his doctor.
“It is with great reluctance and disappointment that I announce my retirement from concert touring,” Diamond added in his own statement. “I have been so honored to bring my shows to the public for the past 50 years. My sincerest apologies to everyone who purchased tickets and were planning to come to the upcoming shows.”
“I plan to remain active in writing, recording and other projects for a long time to come.”
“My thanks goes out to my loyal and devoted audiences around the world. You will always have my appreciation for your support and encouragement. This ride has been ‘so good, so good, so good’ thanks to you,” he concluded.
Diamond is one of the best-selling solo musicians, known for chart-topping songs like “Sweet Caroline”, “Cracklin’ Rose”, and “Song Sung Blue”. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011, and is set to be honored at this weekend’s Grammy Awards as the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award.