Friday, October 26, 2012

Fwd: Big Send Off

One for tonight ... I'll let my buddy Rich Layton explain below ...

A personal note from Rich:

Hello to all and my sincere apologies for abandoning all of you on the mailing list. In case you had not heard, I had to stop performing at the end of May this year when the ringing in my ears went off the charts during our gigs, and I feared I was doing more permanent damage to my hearing. After bouncing around the medical community, I was diagnosed in July with a condition called Superior Canal Dehiscence. SCD causes sound to exit the normal hearing channel and "rattle around in my head." It causes the ringing to ramp up painfully when I am singing or talking for extended periods. Same with playing harmonica.

Faced with walking away from music, I am going to undergo surgery in December. The fix involves cutting a 2-inch square "access panel" through my skull, lifting up my brain (assuming they find one) and patching the base of the skull /sealing the ear canal with bone cement. It's typically a 3-day hospital stay, then several quite weeks at home. Could require some therapy to recalibrate my balance system, depending on what they find. Hopefully back onstage in 2-1/2 to 3 months and at the baseline tinnitus level I have been able to manage for 20+ years. Oh, and I get a bill for $12,000 for what my insurance doesn't cover.

To help with the cost, friends have lined up for a benefit show for this Friday and set up additional options for contributions. This weekend, we are going out with a bang at Duff's Garage on Friday and Knucklehead's on Saturday. These will be the last shows with Reverend Mark Sexton on guitar, but also feature original bass player Robert Lefebvre back in the lineup. I will take a three-month hiatus for surgery and recovery, then we'll be back next Spring with a few tricks up our sleeve. Will keep you posted via the website and FaceBook page. The mission of worldwide swamplification will continue.

Thanks for all your support!


More info on the fundraising effort here

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