Willie Nelson Cancels Tour Due to Breathing Problems

photo: Brad Coolidge

This story has been updated.

Willie Nelson has canceled his current tour due to breathing problems. This was the news coming out of the Willie Nelson camp late Wednesday evening (8-7) after he performed a show Wednesday at the Huntington Center in Toledo, Ohio and experienced breathing issues. Which exact upcoming tour dates will be affected were not announced.

A simple statement posted from Willie Nelson read, “To my fans, I’m sorry to cancel my tour, but I have a breathing problem that I need to have my doctor check out. I’ll be back Love, Willie”

Willie Nelson is currently on a headlining tour with Alison Krauss through the end of August, with six more dates left to go, staring with August 9th in Grand Rapids, MI at the Van Andel Arena, going until August 17th in Greensboro, NC at the Greensboro Coliseum. These dates most certainly will be affected by the cancellations.

Willie Nelson then has nine tour dates as part of the Outlaw Music Festival throughout September, as well as his annual Farm Aid benefit on September 21st at the Alpine Valley Music Theater in Wisconsin. At this point it is undetermined if these dates will be affected, or if it will be dependent on how Willie Nelson feels. Willie then has an additional ten tour dates on his calendar for October, and two in November at the moment.

UPDATE: According to Willie Nelson’s publicist, only the August dates are being affected by the cancellations at the moment. Willie’s Outlaw Fest dates in September and the live dates beyond are still on.

The 86-year-old has had to cancel shows previously due to health problems. In late 2016 into early 2017, Willie Nelson canceled and postponed numerous tour dates due to an undisclosed illness. However besides one incident in May of 2018, Willie’s health has been holding up well over the last couple of years, and he’s been maintaining a regular tour schedule.

In October of 2015, Willie Nelson had a stem cell procedure to help him with his breathing problems. “Over the years I’ve smoked a lot of cigarettes, and I’ve had emphysema and pneumonia four or five times, so my lungs were really screwed up,” Willie said at the time. “I had heard that this stem-cell operation would be good for them. So I said, ‘Well, I’m gonna try it out.’ “

More information on Willie Nelson’s condition, and what exact tour dates have been canceled and which ones are still pending when the information is made available.

Canceled Willie Nelson Tour Dates with Allison Krauss:

  • Aug 9 – Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • Aug 10 – Big Sandy Superstore Arena in Huntington, W.Va.
  • Aug 12 – Florence Center in Florence, S.C.
  • Aug 14 – John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville, Va.
  • Aug 16 – Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville, S.C.
  • Aug 17 – Greensboro Coliseum Complex in Greensboro, N.C.