Blues Traveler Cancels Concerts Due To John Popper Surgery

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Blues Traveler frontman John Popper has revealed a need for immediate surgery to repair collapsed vertebrae in his neck. The unexpected operation has forced the band to cancel an number of upcoming concerts and festival appearances.

In a note posted to his Facebook page, Popper explains the months-long ordeal that finally resulted in the pending surgical procedure and postponement of the band’s shows. The full message (sic throughout) can be read here:

Hey everybody… So regretfully I have an announcement to make…

For those of U who may not know about my busted leg at the beginning of the year&the two months of wheelchair time that took…or the faliure of the other leg’s knee in compensating leading to a stress fracture&two more months on crutches…Well it seems there was another problem coming to a head that these leg issues had been concealing…A problem w/my spine in my neck that likely had been building for years now… I noticed at the end of last year that I was beginning to have profound weakness in my right arm&if U’ve watched our shows this year U’d notice my inability to hold the mic right handed w/out some help from the left…or even holding onto the vox stand or even holding drinks…I may have seemed more tipsey than I was…&wobbly…

It took a while to find the right MRI which we did in cleaveland for the RNC…&by the time of the DNC,we had results indicating that 3vertabrae in my neck have long been collapsed&are now so deformed asto be drastically impinging on my spinal chord! Had I continued to let this go,in only a few months I could’ve been facing total&permanent paralysis!!…Its creepy to think about frankly… But immediate surgery is required&there is nothing else for it… I am so sorry to have to do this now,but we are forced to postpone about half of our tour w/the Wallflowers&G-Love&his most Special Sauce… The good news there being that at least we can reschedual all of the dates to the week following the initial end of what we were originally planning… And if I do my part&the doctors do theirs… I will be up&running&back on tour by8/24…

Sadly though there are some festivals…like the ones this weekend in Minnesota&Nebraska…&a couple others that we can’t postpone&are forced to cancel…A detailed list of what dates are cancelled&which are simply moved is certain to follow on our band page&twitter… I only regret not getting to tell all of U yesterday,but we wanted to go thru all the second opinion stuff incase a better option might’ve been available…

The promoters have all been absolutely wonderfull about this&please check our band page tomorrow&U will find out the status officially of each gig…the promoters will have all official announcements by then…

It has been pretty painfull of late performing w/this issue &it was getting worse…that is what it does if ignored…&I am done ignoring it… As bummed as we all are having to cancel,&as much time as it may potentially take to get my strength back to these limbs,the good news is that I can now start to actually improve…&that I think is everything… Again I want U to know how much I love&appreciate all of Ur patience&kindess… I’m pretty proud of how reliable we’ve been…but once again I am infact relying on that patience&kindness…like I always have…Tune in tomorrow on the BT page…

U have all my love&faith…

As the message indicates, Popper hopes to be back in action by the band’s show on August 24 at Innsbrook Pavilion in Glen Allen, Virginia. Expect an update from Blues Traveler regarding the canceled dates soon.

[Hat Tip – Relix]