Elton John Contracts Grave Bacterial Infection, Should Make Full Recovery

Photo Credit: Getty Images
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Oh hell no, Elton, not you too. Last week the Rocket Man contracted a “rare and potentially deadly” bacterial infection while on tour in South America. But thankfully, he is on the mend and should make a full recovery.

According to People, the singer and pianist became gravely ill on a flight traveling from Santiago, Chile to the United Kingdom. Upon arrival, he was immediately admitted to the hospital for treatment. After a long stay, including two nights in the intensive care unit, he was discharged on Saturday, April 22. Now out of danger, John can finish his recovery at home.

One of John’s representatives released a statement to People detailing the emergency:

“After spending two nights in intensive care followed by an extended stay in hospital, Elton was released from hospital on Saturday, April 22, and is now resting comfortably at home per doctor’s advice. Infections of this nature are rare and potentially deadly. Thankfully, Elton’s medical team identified this quickly and treated it successfully. He is expected to make a full and complete recovery.”


As a consequence of this unforeseen illness, John must cancel the April-May leg of his Las Vegas residency. He will also be unable to perform on May 6 in Bakersfield, California. On June 3, he will recommence touring with a show in Twickenham, England.

John delivered his own written address to fans, as well as to those who treated him at the hospital:

“I am so fortunate to have the most incredible and loyal fans and apologise for disappointing them...I am extremely grateful to the medical team for their excellence in looking after me so well.”

We’re all grateful too! But while it seems the crisis is no more, it never hurts to summon some positive energy. Let’s start an Elton playlist in the comments, shall we? I’ll begin.

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My favorites are the older stuff, like Tumbleweed Connection and Madman, but tonight I’ve got Captain Fantastic on. I’ve loved him since the 70s, when I remember him doing an “EJ the DJ” promotion for an Atlanta radio station where people called him with questions like “Are you related to Olivia Newton-John?” And I’m happy it didn’t take an obit to salute everything he’s done to preserve two of my other favorite other musical treasures—doing a duet album to help Leon Russell after a round of health troubles (although sadly we lost Leon last summer), and getting Rufus Wainwright into rehab.

The world needs you, Elton, not to mention your sweet kids. Here’s to a quick recovery and many years of continued awesomeness.