Huey Lewis and the News are canceling all of their 2018 tour dates, due to the lead singer’s ongoing hearing loss. In an official statement Lewis writes that he “can’t hear music well enough to sing” and that “lower frequencies distort violently making it impossible to find pitch.”
Lewis adds that he has been diagnosed with Meniere’s Disease, and he’s been advised to abstain from performing indefinitely. However, the tone of the statement seems hopeful, and Lewis ends the statement by saying perhaps “one day soon I’ll be able to perform again.”
While this could potentially be the end of Lewis’ touring career, he does have other projects in the works. In February, he announced a musical based on his songbook—entitled _Heart of Rock and Roll_—and his longstanding admiration for the jam world could hint at a segue into the instrumental/improvisational realm of music. “Had it been different times, [Huey Lewis and the News] would have been a jamband for sure,” he told Relix in 2011. “We would have been Umphrey’s McGee.” In fact, the ’80s hitmaker even performed with UM on Jimmy Kimmel Live in 2006.
Read Lewis’ full statement below:
Two and a half months ago, just before a show in Dallas, I lost most of my hearing. Although I can still hear a little, one on one, and on the phone, I can’t hear music well enough to sing. The lower frequencies distort violently making it impossible to find pitch. I’ve been to the House Ear Institute, the Stanford Ear Institute, and the Mayo Clinic, hoping to find an answer. The doctors believe I have Meniere’s disease and have agreed that I can’t perform until I improve. Therefore the only prudent thing to do is to cancel all future shows. Needless to say, I feel horrible about this, and wish to sincerely apologize to all the fans who’ve already bought tickets and were planning to come see us. I’m going to concentrate on getting better, and hope that one day soon I’ll be able to perform again.