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Brian May, Battling “Persistent Illness,” Scraps Remaining 2016 Dates

(Image credit: Rob Ball/Getty Images)

Queen‘s Brian May says illness is sapping his energies and desire to perform and has canceled his remaining 2016 dates as a result.

The guitarist writes on his website that he is fighting a “persistent illness which is destroying my energy and my will.”

“I managed to complete the recent Queen and Adam Lambert dates in Asia,” he writes, “[but] I am am now at the point where I don’t feel confident to perform the scheduled shows to the standard we all expect.”

May says the cancelled dates include his annual December candlelight concerts with Kerry Ellis.

The guitarist followed up with a post thanking his fans for “your lovely words and wishes.”

“I got myself in a very depleted state and have taken the decision now to clear my diary of everything until the end of the year. I'm leaving today on a big steel bird to spend some time recharging in a safe place. Need to turn off the phones and media for a while.

“Apologies to everyone involved in the things I will miss. I have to get away and prioritize healing—sometimes there is no choice.

In related news, Queen will release Queen on Air: The Complete BBC Sessions November 4. The set will be available in numerous formats, including a six-disc deluxe edition featuring three CDs worth of radio performances and another three filled with archival interviews.

Below is a recent video of Queen with Adam Lambert perform “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions” in Bangkok last month on their just-completed tour.

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Christopher Scapelliti is editor-in-chief of Guitar Player (opens in new tab) magazine, the world’s longest-running guitar magazine, founded in 1967. In his extensive career, he has authored in-depth interviews with such guitarists as Pete Townshend, Slash, Billy Corgan, Jack White, Elvis Costello and Todd Rundgren, and audio professionals including Beatles engineers Geoff Emerick and Ken Scott. He is the co-author of Guitar Aficionado: The Collections: The Most Famous, Rare, and Valuable Guitars in the World (opens in new tab), a founding editor of Guitar Aficionado magazine, and a former editor with Guitar WorldGuitar for the Practicing Musician and Maximum Guitar. Apart from guitars, he maintains a collection of more than 30 vintage analog synthesizers.