Kenny Rogers has reportedly been advised by a doctor to cancel all performances through the end of the year. The Fox Carolina news site reported that Rogers’ May 26th concert at Harrah’s resort in Cherokee, North Carolina, had been canceled, with other venues, including Pennsylvania’s Kirby Center in Wilkes Barre, noting that show, set for May 31st, has also been canceled.
According to a news release sent to the venues, Rogers, 79, has been facing “a series of health challenges.” The release notes that while doctors expect a positive outcome, they also recommended canceling the tour, dubbed “The Gambler’s Last Deal” after his most famous hit, so the entertainer could focus on recuperation.
In October 2017, Rogers was honored by an all-star group of musicians including his “Islands in the Stream” singing partner Dolly Parton at All in for the Gambler: Kenny Rogers’ Farewell Concert Celebration held at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. Among those who performed Rogers’ most popular tunes were Chris Stapleton, Little Big Town, Lionel Richie and Jamey Johnson, among others.
“When I meet people, they tell me that I was responsible for certain things and I always thought that was great,” Rogers told Rolling Stone Country when the farewell show was announced last summer. “[Now] they’re coming to do things for me and I think that’s awesome. I’m a bit uncomfortable touting it because it’s not my nature. It’s kind of fun and kind of scary. This is all I’ve done for 60 years, but my mobility has gotten kind of strange, and I don’t like to go on stage and have to apologize. It’s one of those things – you make decisions based on what life gives you. I’ve had a great life, I can’t complain, but it’s time for me to hang it up, I think.”
Earlier this year, Rogers’ 1978 recording of “The Gambler,” penned by his fellow Country Music Hall of Fame member Don Schlitz, was added to the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry.