Music News

Neil Diamond offers concert audience a refund

Neil Diamond performs at the Glastonbury Festival 2008 in Somerset in south west England June 29, 2008. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Singer and songwriter Neil Diamond is offering audiences of a recent Ohio concert a refund and asking for their forgiveness after he performed with a raspy voice earlier this week.

Diamond, 67, was diagnosed with acute laryngitis after the August 25 show in Columbus, Ohio, and the “Sweet Caroline” singer released a statement on his website Tuesday apologizing to fans through the lyrics of his past hit, “Play Me.”

“Dear Fans in Columbus, I haven’t let you down before and I won’t let you down now,” Diamond said. “Until you hear from me again remember, You are the sun, I am the moon. You are the words. I am the tune. Forgive me. I love you.”

His laryngitis prognosis also forced Diamond to cancel two concerts this week in Green Bay, Wisconsin and St. Louis, Missouri. Both concerts have been rescheduled for dates in September.

Diamond’s spokeswoman said in a statement that Columbus fans who attended the show have until September 5 to seek a refund for their tickets.

Diamond rose to fame in the 1960’s and 1970’s with hits such as “Kentucky Woman” and “Song Sung Blue.” The New York City native also wrote popular radio tunes for 1960s pop group “The Monkees,” including “I’m a Believer” and “Look Out (Here Comes Tomorrow).”

Though Diamond’s popularity waned in the 1980’s, a cult following of baby boomer fans still pack the pop icon’s concerts. His song “Sweet Caroline,” inspired by a childhood picture of Caroline Kennedy, is the theme song of the Boston Red Sox baseball team.

Reporting by Jennifer Martinez; Editing by Bob Tourtellotte