John Mayer tests positive for Covid-19, drops out of Dead & Company's Playing in the Sand festival

John Mayer
(Image credit: Getty Images)

John Mayer has canceled his forthcoming appearances with Dead & Company at Mexico's Playing in the Sand festival after testing positive for Covid-19. The band have confirmed that Mayer will be sitting out the festival in a new post on Instagram.

“Today, just prior to leaving for Mexico, per his physician, John Mayer tested positive for Covid-19 and will be unable to perform at the upcoming Playing in the Sand event in Riviera Cancun January 7-10,” the band write.

The weekend will now feature a lineup of Mickey Hart, Bob Weir, Jeff Chimenti, Oteil Burbridge, Jay Lane, Tom Hamilton Jr, Margo Price and others. 

Earlier this week, drummer Bill Kreutzmann announced that he would also miss the Mexico shows due to health concerns regarding his heart.

“After a lifetime of playing special beats, it’s almost no wonder that my heart came up with its own idea of rhythm,” he wrote on Twitter. “All jokes aside, my doctor has ordered me to take it easy and stay safe through the end of January so that I can continue to drum and play for you for many tours to come. 

“I have a lot of music left in me and there’s no stopping me from playing it. I’ve never been one to obey orders or play by the rules, but in the interest of longevity, I hope you’ll understand.”

The band conclude in their Instagram post: “We came down here to have fun. Unfortunately some of our brothers cannot make it but fun is what we're going to have. In these unprecedented times fans should expect many rare and different tunes.”

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Back in August last year, YouTuber Justin Jeske gave us a comprehensive rundown of John Mayer's Dead & Company guitar rig, though we were stumped as to the nature of a mysterious JHS pedal lurking on his pedalboard...

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Sam Roche

Sam was Staff Writer at from 2019 to 2023, and also created content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.