Brian Wilson has postponed his upcoming tour dates to take care of his mental health. In a note to ticketholders to his June Pet Sounds and Greatest Hits Live tours, he wrote on his website that he did not take the decision lightly. His plan is to “rest, recover and work with [his] doctors” on his issues until he is ready to get onstage again. The Greatest Hits Live dates beginning in August have not been postponed.
“It is no secret that I have been living with mental illness for many decades,” the former Beach Boys singer wrote. “There were times when it was unbearable but with doctors and medications I have been able to live a wonderful, healthy and productive life with support from my family, friends and fans who have helped me through this journey. … [Lately] I’ve been struggling with stuff in my head and saying things I don’t mean, and I don’t know why. It’s something I’ve never dealt with before and we can’t quite figure it out just yet.”
Wilson also wrote that in the last year he had gotten three successful surgeries on his back and that he was feeling stronger than ever. It was after the last operation though that he started to feel “mentally insecure.” “We’re not sure what is causing it, but I do know that it’s not good for me to be on the road right now so I’m heading back to Los Angeles,” he wrote.
Wilson has been diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder and has struggled with his mental health for more than 50 years. In the late Sixties, he allegedly admitted himself into a psychiatric hospital forcing the rest of the Beach Boys to work without him. In the mid Seventies, he sought help from Dr. Eugene Landy, whom Wilson later accused of exploiting him. In 1982, after overdosing on drugs and alcohol, he agreed to more help from Landy and stopped touring with the band. Eventually, he put out a self-titled solo album in 1988. After finding an equilibrium and separating himself from Landy, he began touring regularly again in the late Nineties and has maintained a rigorous schedule in recent years.
The singer discussed his mental health with Rolling Stone in a 2016 interview, blaming his problems on taking “bad drugs” in his younger years. “I’ve told a lot of people don’t take psychedelic drugs,” he said. “It’s mentally dangerous to take. I regret having taken LSD. It’s a bad drug.”
Wilson has a run of gigs with the Zombies scheduled for the fall.
Read Brian Wilson’s full, unedited note:
It is with great regret that I need to postpone my upcoming June tour.
It is no secret that I have been living with mental illness for many decades. There were times when it was unbearable but with doctors and medications I have been able to live a wonderful, healthy and productive life with support from my family, friends and fans who have helped me through this journey.
As you may know in the last year or so I’ve had 3 surgeries on my back. The surgeries were successful and i’m physically stronger than i’ve been in a long time.
However, after my last surgery i started feeling strange and it’s been pretty scary for awhile. I was not feeling like myself. Mentally insecure is how I’d describe it. We’re not sure what is causing it but i do know that it’s not good for me to be on the road right now so I’m heading back to Los Angeles.
I had every intention to do these shows and was excited to get back to performing. I’ve been in the studio recording and rehearsing with my band and have been feeling better. But then it crept back and I’ve been struggling with stuff in my head and saying things I don’t mean and I don’t know why. Its something i’ve never dealt with before and we cant quite figure it out just yet.
I’m going to rest, recover and work with my doctors on this.
I’m looking forward to my recovery and seeing everyone later in the year.
The music and my fans keep me going and I know this will be something I can AGAIN overcome.
Love & Mercy,