Singer-guitarist in US indie band began treatment for multiple myeloma last week

Charles Bissell, singer-guitarist in US indie band The Wrens, has revealed that he is battling cancer.

The musician told fans in a lengthy Facebook post that he has been diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a cancer which causes abnormal plasma cells to accumulate in the bone marrow, where they interfere with the production of normal blood cells. He began treatment at the end of last week.

Bissell reassured fans: “But because I’m “young” for this (avg. age of diagnosis is usually more like 70) and because targeted treatments have advanced so much esp. in the last few years, my prognosis is almost certainly not as dire as googling might make it seem.”

“It’s not “curable” per se,” he wrote later in the post, explaining: “Here it means more that you’re stuck with a longish weekly hospital commute for meds/chemo from here on out (with sooner/later, possibly/probably a bone marrow transplant (not as crazy as it sounds, more on that also below)). So really almost more like a chronic condition like say, diabetes. If diabetes came with free bone marrow.”

He went on to write that the bone marrow transplant “isn’t as radical as it sounds” and describe it as a “bullet I may even dodge entirely”.

The Wrens, a four-piece who hail from New Jersey, released their debut album ‘Silver’ in 1994. A new album, the band’s first since 2003, had been expected to arrive some time this year.

“I don’t know to what extent things will be different with this next record because of all this (i.e. mostly touring stuff, I guess),” Bissell wrote on Facebook. “[But] the whole thing has definitely re-shuffled my priority deck.”

“I’m at this point even less inclined to hop in a tour van on the multi-week plan,” he added.