Country folk legend John Prine will not be appearing this weekend at the annual New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival as scheduled. Originally slotted to appear Saturday, May 4th in the Blues Tent, he has canceled due to health reasons. “After a routine medical procedure his doctor has advised him he needs to extend his recovery time,” Prine’s management told New Orleans Jazz Fest. Elvin Bishop’s Big Fun Trio has been added as Prine’s replacement.
Currently John Prine is scheduled to make all his other live appearances beginning May 17th in St. Louis, MO and May 18th in Springfield, MO, with Amanda Shires supporting. John Prine has a full slate of tour dates scheduled for 2019 leading up to his personally-curated and sold out “All The Best Fest” in the Dominican Republic in November, and an appearance at the Ryman in Nashville on New Years Eve.
John Prine is just the latest big cancellation for the festival which has also lost two of its biggest headliners. The Rolling Stones had to cancel their appearance along with a string of other dates due to Mick Jagger needing surgery to replace a heart valve. Fleetwood Mac was named as the Jazz Fest replacement, but a week later had to cancel themselves due to health concerns for Stevie Nicks. Widespread Panic was then brought into replace them, with promoters reorganizing ticket prices to make up for the cancellations.
A two-time Grammy winner, John Prine set historic numbers for the release of his 2018 album The Tree of Forgiveness—his first album of original material in 13 years. He also won the Americana Artist of the Year for the second year in a row in 2018, as well as BMI’s Troubadour Award, and has been enjoying a resurgence in popularity as younger artists embrace him as a songwriting pioneer and legend. Prine was also nominated for consideration by the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2018, speaking to the 72-year-old songwriter’s wide influence. John Prine is a survivor of squamous cell cancer, which he was diagnosed with in 1998.
Also on Wednesday (5/1), John Prine released a new song called “My Old Kentucky Home, Goodnight.”