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Peter Frampton’s farewell tour follows disclosure of degenerative disease

Peter Frampton performs in New Lenox in 2014. | Erin Gallagher/For Sun-Times Media

Peter Frampton performs in New Lenox in 2014. | Erin Gallagher/For Sun-Times Media

Peter Frampton recently announced dates for his farewell tour just one day later revealed why it would be his last time performing.

In an interview aired  by “CBS This Morning: Saturday,” the 68-year-old rock star said he had been diagnosed with inclusion body myositis, a rare inflammatory illness that causes muscles to progressively get weaker.

The guitarist was diagnosed with the disease when he decided to go see a doctor after he tripped and fell on stage. After noticing the toll IBM took on his body last year, Frampton began recording as much music as he could: “33 new tracks.”

The “Baby, I Love Your Way” artist told Rolling Stone he initially kept his diagnosis a secret while it was in its early stages and because he wanted to continue playing and touring while he still could. But he now feels it’s progressed to a point where it’s necessary to go public.

“In a year’s time, I might not be able to play. Right now, it’s progressing but I’m still at the top of my game,” he said. “We decided to do a farewell tour now since I don’t want to go out and not be able to play well. If I’m going to do a farewell tour, I want to play good. I want to rock it.”

The tour makes a stop at Huntington Bank Pavilion on July 28. Tickets are available at livenation.com. Frampton has also launched a fund at the Johns Hopkins Myositis Center to which he’ll donate $1 per ticket sold. Doctors at Johns Hopkins University hope to raise awareness and funds for research following Frampton’s disclosure.

Frampton added that while the disease hasn’t affected his singing voice, it has impacted his ability to play guitar.

“What will happen, unfortunately, is that it affects the finger flexors,” he told CBS. “That’s the first telltale sign is the flexors, you know. So for a guitar player, it’s not very good.”

Frampton’s physician, Lisa Christopher-Stine, is the director of the Johns Hopkins Myositis Center. She said she and Frampton spoke years ago about potentially becoming a voice for inclusion body myositis. Because the disease is rare, it’s difficult to generate funding.

The English-born singer, who has long called America his home and is currently based in Nashville, is hitting the road this summer for the Peter Frampton Finale: The Farewell Tour, which will begin June 18 in Tulsa, Oklahoma and wrap Oct. 12 in San Francisco.

Rasha Ali, USA TODAY; Contributing: Associated Press
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