Sad — but cautiously optimistic — news for fans of Sharon Jones and her band the Dap-Kings: the acclaimed soul singer, 57, announced today that she has stage-one bile cancer.
According to a statement by her rep, Jones’ illness has “fortunately been discovered early and has not spread. It is expected that the immediate proposed surgical solution will lead to a full recovery, but because of its invasive and complex nature, will necessitate a rather lengthy convalescence. Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings will be back before you know it, with a new release date and rescheduled tours worldwide.”
The release also features an upbeat quote from the singer:
“Over the last few weeks I haven’t felt good and I didn’t know what was going on. We sadly had to cancel shows while I went through a series of tests and short hospital stays. We just found out that I have a stage-one tumor on my bile duct. Luckily we caught it really early and fast and the doctors say it’s operable and curable!
I will be having surgery very soon and will have to rest and recover. I’ll be staying in touch and keeping my fans and friends updated on my progress. I’m looking forward to getting back on the road to give the people what they want!”
Jones, a former longtime corrections officer at New York’s notorious Rikers Island jail, came to music professionally later than most of her peers, but quickly made up for lost time, releasing five critically lauded albums and becoming known for her joyous, funk-heavy live performances.
Before Jones’ diagnosis, the group’s sixth album, Give The People What They Want, was scheduled to be released Aug. 6.
More on EW.com:
Snoop Lion’s ‘Ashtrays and Heartbreaks,’ featuring Miley Cyrus: Watch it here