Former Grateful Dead guitarist Bob Weir has sparked fears for his health after cancelling his remaining 2014 Ratdog shows. The rocker has cited unspecified "circumstances" as the reason for his band's hiatus.
The news affects his U.S. tour, which was scheduled to begin in Boston, Massachusetts later this week (beg11Aug14).
Weir cancelled a string of shows last year (13) following a collapse at a gig in New York.
The veteran rocker was performing with his other group Further in Port Chester at the end of April that year (13), when he fell to the floor in the middle of a song, and then exited the stage with what bandmate Phil Lesh called a "strained shoulder".
Weir was back onstage with the group in Atlantic City, New Jersey on 27 April (13), but an ongoing mystery health issue forced him to scrap a series of appearances and shows.
He returned to the stage in June, 2013 to tape a new episode of his weekly web series, Weir Here, which was put on hold following his stage collapse, in front of a live audience at Terrapin Crossroads in San Rafael, California.
Grateful Dead rocker Phil Lesh fears he will never fully get over the loss of frontman Jerry Garcia, almost two decades after the singer's death. The cult star, who had battled drug and weight issues for years, suffered a fatal heart attack while in rehab in 1995, just eight days before his 53rd birthday.
The group officially disbanded following Garcia's sudden death, although the surviving members of the jam band have since toured with various different line-ups.
However, Lesh insists Garcia's tragic end continues to haunt him.
He tells Rolling Stone magazine, "It's taken me 15 years to come to terms with Jerry's death. And I'm not completely there yet."
Former Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh has signed a new deal to perform a 45-show residency at New York's Capitol Theater in 2014 to avoid the rigorous schedule of touring. The 73 year old tells the New York Times he's "done with one-nighters" and he's looking forward to a more stable performing experience.
He says, "I've been on the road for 46 years, and I've gotten to a point where I'm jealous of all the time that I waste on buses and sitting around waiting to go on."
Lesh will perform a kick-off show on 14 November (13) and the series will officially start in April (14) at the venue which once hosted the Grateful Dead for 18 shows in 1970 and 1971.
He continues, "I'm not retiring, and I'm not slowing down. I'm pretty sure I want to make music till I can't breathe anymore. I just want to do it within the most focused possible way. The future looks really exciting."
The surviving members of the Grateful Dead are facing legal action from a concert filmmaker over allegations of copyright infringement. Len Dell'Amico claims he had an agreement in place with the jam band for compensation for all video releases featuring footage he shot of the group from 1984 to 1991, with the understanding that he would retain the rights to his work.
However, Dell'Amico alleges he was cut out of a subsequent 10-year deal the rockers made in 2006 via their Grateful Dead Productions company to lease archive footage to bosses at Rhino Entertainment, a treasure trove which included his footage from tours, live broadcasts and other on-camera projects.
Former Dead stars Bob Weir, bassist Phil Lesh, drummer Bill Kreutzmann and keyboardist Mickey Hart maintain that Dell'Amico completed the films as works made for hire, but the plaintiff, whose copyright registrations for the footage are pending from the U.S. Copyright Office, is seeking a declaration from a Los Angeles judge to recognise him as the owner of the footage.
He has named Rhino Entertainment executives among the defendants and is seeking damages for copyright infringement and breach of contract, and an injunction against the future distribution of the works.
Former Grateful Dead star Bob Weir returned to the stage on Wednesday night (12Jun13) over a month after cancelling a string of shows following a collapse at a gig in New York. The veteran rocker was performing with his group Further in Port Chester at the end of April (13), when he fell to the floor in the middle of a song, and then exited the stage with what bandmate Phil Lesh called a "strained shoulder".
Weir was back onstage with the group in Atlantic City, New Jersey on 27 April (13), but an ongoing mystery health issue forced him to scrap a series of appearances and shows, including a performance at the BottleRock Napa Valley music festival in California.
A statement from the band read: "Grateful Dead & Furthur co-founder Bob Weir is unable to perform in any capacity for the next several weeks."
However, the guitarist returned to the stage on Wednesday to tape a new episode of his weekly web series, Weir Here, which has been on hold since his stage collapse, in front of a live audience at Terrapin Crossroads in San Rafael, California.
Weir offered no official explanation for his leave of absence, but appeared to be in good health and spirits as he performed with Widespread Panic's Dave Schools, Primus' Jay Lane, Jeff Chimenti from his band Furthur and multi-instrumentalist Jason Crosby, among others.
The show also featured a performance from singer/songwriter Beth Orton.
Weir then sat down to chat about his high school memories with Grateful Dead archivist David Lemieux and answered questions from the audience, but no one asked him about his health.
Grateful Dead star Bob Weir is taking a break from performing after collapsing onstage in New York last week (ends28Apr13). The veteran rocker was performing with his group Further in Port Chester when he fell to the floor in the middle of a song, before exiting the stage and leaving his bandmates to play on without him.
Weir's bandmate Phil Lesh put the problems down to a shoulder injury, and the star was back on stage with the group for a gig in Atlantic City, New Jersey on Saturday (27Apr13).
However, the rockers have now cancelled a set at the BottleRock Napa Valley music festival in California as Weir is not well enough to perform.
A post on Further's Facebook.com page reads, "Due to unforeseen circumstances, Furthur regretfully will be unable to appear as scheduled at BottleRock Napa Valley (in California) on Thursday, May 9. Grateful Dead & Furthur co-founder Bob Weir, is unable to perform in any capacity for the next several weeks."
However, Weir still plans to hit the road for his solo shows next month (Jun13) and rejoin Further for the band's summer (13) tour, which kicks off in New York City on 11 July (13).
Grateful Dead guitarist Bob Weir sparked major concerns for his health on Thursday after he collapsed onstage during a concert in New York. The 65-year-old rocker was performing with his band Furthur at the Capitol Theatre in Port Chester when he fell to the floor in the middle of a song. Bandmates and crew members helped him get up and Weir finished the song from a chair before leaving the stage to seek medical attention backstage.
Former Dead bassist Phil Lesh assured fans that the guitarist was OK but had injured his shoulder and would not be returning. Furthur are still scheduled to perform in Atlantic City, New Jersey on Saturday night (27Apr13).