Vivian Campbell has a busy couple of months ahead of him with Def Leppard and Last In Line,playing festivals and headlining certain gigs across Europe and North America from June until August. However, in a shocking turn of events, the guitarist has revealed that he is currently in recovery for Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.
Campbell tells how this came to be in an unexpectedly humorous mood on his Facebook page, sharing the following:
“I feel fortunate that my cancer sent me an alarm call in the form of ‘the cough that wouldn’t quit’. Otherwise, how would I have known? After several months of trying every inhaler known to man, my doctor finally had me X-rayed. A further CAT scan revealed that enlarged lymph nodes were doing wrestling manoeuvres on my windpipe – hence the cough. What was causing the enlarged lymph nodes, however, was yet to be determined, so I underwent a surgical biopsy on March 11th, the first day of Leppard rehearsals for our Viva Las Vegas shows. Obviously, I didn’t make it to rehearsal that day, but it’s okay; I know the songs by now…
My diagnosis was Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and 6 months of chemotherapy is the prescribed treatment. I’m about 2 months in and feeling rather spiffy, all things considered. Hodgkin’s has an over 80% cure rate, so by my reckoning, if you’re going to have a cancer, Hodgie’s is the one to have!
The reason I’m sharing this with you is because, despite cancer and chemo, me and my new aerodynamic hairstyle (read: no hair) are going on tour this summer with the band and I don’t want anyone to be so shocked by my new look that they ask for a refund. Simple economics, really.
My family, friends and bandmates have all been extremely supportive through this and I look forward to a summer full of shows with both Def Leppard in June/July and the debut of Last In Line this August.”
As previously mentioned, August will mark the debut of Last In Line, which features the original members of the Dio band (including Vinny Appice, Jimmy Bain, and Claude Schnell, as well as new singer Andrew Freeman) playing their original songs together on tour once again. It also marks 30 years since the recording of the legendary albums, Sacred Heart, Last In Line, and Holy Diver. It’s great to hear that he’s in great spirits, though, and seems positive about keeping on track with both bands’ tour plans. With about four months left in his chemo treatments, we wish Viv a speedy recovery and a kick-ass tour.