Buckethead has revealed that he has been diagnosed with a heart condition.
The prolific musician – who has released over 300 albums, collaborated with the likes of Iggy Pop and Mike Patton, and notably served as a guitarist for Guns N’ Roses between 2000 and 2004 – revealed the condition during a recent appearance on the Coming Alive podcast.
Asked about the hardest thing that he’s ever gone through, Buckethead – AKA Brian Patrick Carroll – opened up about the diagnosis.
“I have a heart problem where my heart beats out of rhythm. It’s been doing it for a long time, but recently it kicked up and became really intense,” he said. “I didn’t know what was going on – I just tried to deal with it and let it do what it did. But it got really intense, so I went to the doctor and they said, ‘You’re on the verge of having a stroke.’
“They suggested I had an ablation, where they go in and freeze your heart. It’s supposed to do something with the nerves, because they said my heart was fine and it could be a genetic thing – they didn’t really know. I had that procedure and it didn’t really stop it and I’m still dealing with it.”
“It’s been really difficult because it’s scary,” Buckethead added. “Even walking across a room is difficult. Luckily the medication I’m thankful for, because it’s kept it from going berserk, but it’s still pretty intense.
“I’m letting this thing sort of exist in me and I can’t really escape it. I’m always aware of my heart beat or the intensity of my heart beat. It definitely scares me, but it’s also doing a lot of good because now I better do all the things I want to do – and I’ve been doing a lot of stuff. I feel an urgency now.
“I could be gone tomorrow,” he concluded. “Anybody could be gone, but that’s a heavy experience. I want to play right now, and I want to play that experience.”