Alan Jackson has revealed he has an incurable disease and for the first-time ever he is opening up about his diagnosis.
During an exclusive interview on Tuesday (Sept. 28) with TODAY show host, Jenna Bush Hager, the country music icon, 62, revealed that he has been diagnosed with a degenerative nerve condition called Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease.
Jackson, talking to Bush Hager from the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville, Tennessee, detailed his condition, which according to the Georgia native he was diagnosis with ten years ago.
“I have this neuropathy and neurological disease,” Jackson revealed.
He continued to share that the disease, inherited from his father, is progressing and now affecting his ability to walk.
“It’s genetic that I inherited from my daddy… There’s no cure for it, but it’s been affecting me for years,” the “Where Have You Gone” singer continued. “And it’s getting more and more obvious. And I know I’m stumbling around on stage. And now I’m having a little trouble balancing, even in front of the microphone, and so I just feel very uncomfortable.”
“It’s not going to kill me. It’s not deadly,” Jackson added. “But it’s related (to) muscular dystrophy and Parkinson’s disease.”
According to Mayo Clinic, “Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease is an inherited, genetic condition. It occurs when there are mutations in the genes that affect the nerves in your feet, legs, hands and arms.”
The TODAY show reported that “the condition affects the peripheral nervous system and causes balance problems by compromising smaller, weaker muscles in the body’s extremities. However, the illness does not alter life expectancy.”
A member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and an inductee to the Songwriters Hall of Fame, Alan Jackson’s membership among music’s all-time greats is part of a long line of career-defining accolades that include three CMA Entertainer of the Year honors, 30 years of membership in the Grand Ole Opry, a Billboard ranking as one of the Top 10 Country Artists of All-Time, induction to the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, and the Heritage Award as the most-performed country songwriter-artist of ASCAP’s first 100 years.
The man from rural Newnan, GA has sold nearly 60-million albums worldwide, ranks as one of the 10 best-selling male vocalists of all-time (rock, pop and country). He has released more than 60 singles – registering 50 Top Ten hits and 35 #1s (including 26 Billboard chart-toppers). He has earned more than 150 major music industry awards – including 19 Academy of Country Music Awards, 16 Country Music Association Awards, a pair of Grammys and ASCAP’s Founders and Golden Note Awards.
Jackson – one of the most successful and respected singer-songwriters in music – just released his latest album, Where Have You Gone, in May. The 21-track collection, which topped the country album chart, features 15 songs penned solely by the music icon. He’s also the man behind one of Nashville’s most-popular tourist stops, AJ’s Good Time Bar, a four-story honky-tonk in the heart of downtown featuring daily live music and a rooftop view of Music City.