John Mayall Cancels All Summer Dates: Health

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Photo of John Mayall: Jeff Fasano

Update (June 18): John Mayall, the reigning king of British blues, continues to recover from a serious illness. All of his scheduled tour dates have been canceled while he recuperates. A post on Mayall’s Facebook page updates his situation:

“Thank you to all of you who have been sending your good wishes to John for his recovery! He has certainly had a tough time with his health in the last few weeks and has been very ill, but we are happy to report he is now on the road to recovery. However, we have consulted John’s physicians and been advised that he should not be performing for a while, so we have reluctantly decided to cancel his upcoming August and September dates. As soon as John is fit and well and has been cleared by his doctors, he is looking forward to getting back to doing what he loves to do; playing the blues! At that time we will do our best to reschedule as many of the cancelled shows as possible.”

Although no official statement has been released, Mayall’s illness is said to be pneumonia.

Here is our original post on his condition:

The Facebook page of Mayall, 84, wrote on May 25: “We are very sorry to announce that John Mayall has to reschedule his upcoming May/June shows due to needing continued medical care after a bout of pneumonia. For those of you who have bought tickets, refunds will be available where the tickets were purchased. John loves his fans and is sorry to disappoint you, but is looking forward to seeing you soon at a venue near you. In the meantime, your prayers and good vibes are much appreciated!”

Among the many classic rock guitarists who played in Mayall’s early bands were Eric Clapton, Peter Green and Mick Taylor.

Earlier today (Saturday, May 26), Walter Trout, a former member of John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, wrote on his Facebook page: “My mentor, ex boss and dear friend John Mayall is in the hospital. He needs your prayers your thoughts and your positive energy. Mr. Mayall We love you and we are with you in this!”

In Best Classic Bands’ 2017 interview with Mayall, the musician was asked “You’re still so active, especially onstage. What do you do to keep yourself in such great shape?”

“I think it’s my obligation to give the audience a full-on show with all the energy I can muster,” he said. “I don’t really have a clue why it happens but I’ll just keep on doing it. For me it’s a big thrill to communicate with audiences and give them what they expect.”

Watch Mayall perform on May 5, 2018 at the Blue Note in Honolulu

Best Classic Bands asked Mayall if he thought Clapton, Green and Taylor were “game-changers” when he first heard them. “Well, yeah, the fact that I hired them means I knew they had something special,” he replied. “There was something that set them apart from other guitar players on the scene.”

Watch John Mayall and old pal Eric Clapton performing together again in 2012

Born on November 29, 1933, Mayall became enamored of blues and jazz early in his life, and he was already performing blues in public by the late ’50s and early ’60s. The singer/songwriter/guitarist/keyboardist and harmonica player released his debut album, John Mayall Plays John Mayall, in 1965, but it wasn’t until Mayall hired a young guitarist named Eric Clapton away from the Yardbirds that his own band, the Bluesbreakers (sometimes spelled Blues Breakers), began getting noticed on a larger scale.

Mayall had dates scheduled for May 30 in San Diego and May 31 in San Juan Capistrano, CA and another 14 dates between June 1-17.

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