April 11, 2006 16:10
Rock legend Arthur Lee has leukaemia
A benefit gig is being lined up
Legendary Love frontman Arthur Lee has been diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, according to reports.
The 61 year-old has undergone chemotherapy, but his condition means further treatment and a bone marrow transplant are a possibility.
The news was broken by Los Angeles-based club booker Liz Garo when she posted on Love fan site LoveWithArthurLee.com.
As the star is reportedly uninsured, friends want to organise a Los Angeles-based benefit concert for late May or early June. Calexico and Cake are among those reported to have been approached. There are also concerts planned for New York and London, according to a spokesperson for the star.
Love are best known for their 1967 album ‘Forever Changes’, one of the most revered records of the psychedelic era.
More recently though Lee went to prison in 1996 on a firearms charge. However, following his release in 2001, the singer put together a new version of Love together to tour.
After seeing the success of Brian Wilson’s ‘Pet Sounds’ tour in the early part of the decade, Lee followed suit by playing ‘Forever Changes’ in full in Europe and North America, complete with string section, to huge acclaim.
However, in the summer of 2005, Lee's backing band Baby Lemonade announced they would no longer be performing with him. The star relocated to Memphis and put another new band together.
Baby Lemonade have indicated they would be willing to play at the benefit show.