The iconic rock outfit's co-founder made the announcement after cancelling two upcoming concerts
Phil Lesh, the founding (and only) bassist of iconic rock outfit Grateful Dead, has announced that he is undergoing treatment for bladder cancer in the wake of cancelling two upcoming gigs with current band Phil Lesh & Friends.
As CNN reports, the 75-year-old Lesh — who has battled a form of the illness before, having overcome a battle with prostate cancer in 2006 — broke the news on social media at the weekend, apologising to fans for cancelling the shows and explaining that, following his diagnosis earlier this month, he had spent the previous few weeks at the Mayo Clinic, in Arizona, for testing, with results so far indicating a positive prognosis.
"I am very fortunate to have the pathology reports show that the tumors are all non-aggressive, and that there is no indication that they have spread," Lesh wrote in his letter to fans via the page of his restaurant/live venue Terrapin Crossroads.
"So thanks to my local doctor Cliff Sewell, and the incredible team at the Mayo Clinic, all is well and I can return to normal activities in two weeks from my surgery."
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Lesh formed the Grateful Dead in 1965 with fellow members Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, Ron McKernan and Bill Kreutzmann. Of the five founders, only keyboardist McKernan would not remain with the band through the entirety of their career, leaving in 1972, Lesh, Garcia, Weir and Kreutzmann were all fixtures up until the Grateful Dead's 1995 dissolution.
Following the disbanding, Lesh played with offshoot outfits The Dead and The Other Ones, as well as founding namesake outfit Phil Lesh & Friends, with whom he remains active.