Ginger Baker Says He Could Be Facing Two Heart Procedures
In late February, Baker was diagnosed with "serious heart problems." Since then, Baker says he's been undergoing treatment from a "brilliant" cardiologist. But surgery could be next.
"Yesterday, he inserted a tube into the artery at my right wrist and fed it all the way to my heart – quite an experience," Baker explains in a new Facebook post. "He was taking pictures of my heart from inside. Amazing technology. There are two options for surgery and, depending on how strong my old lungs are, they may do both." Baker adds that the doctor "says he’s going to get me playing again."
This is only the latest health scare for Baker, who was hospitalized a few years ago with a serious respiratory infection while on tour with Ginger Baker's Jazz Confusion. He has also been dealing with degenerative osteoarthiritis. That's to say nothing of his struggles with addiction: Baker told the Guardian in 2013 that he'd tried to kick heroin 29 times before finally succeeding in 1981.
Baker had been set to lead the third edition of Baker's Air Force to 10 shows this year, with five concerts set in the U.K. for the last week in April. Four U.S. dates were to follow in May, with a wrap-up stop at Kent, U.K., in July. There's no word on when he may get back on the road.
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