Earlier this month we reported that Glenn Symmonds was diagnosed with cancer of the bladder. Symmonds told CelebrityExaminer that there were warning signs as far back as January of this year, and warned people to pay attention to any abnormalities with your body.
Symmonds was briefly hospitalized to remove a tumor and have a biopsy performed on his bladder. While they removed the tumor, test results show that the cancer has spread to the muscles of the bladder. As Symmonds endures a 12-week chemo treatment, his medical bills are on the rise.
Money is asking fans to help support Symmonds, who he refers to as Mr. Shakin’.
“We are in the early stages of planning some benefits to help him with the crazy costs of his cancer treatments and once we have the details nailed down you will be the first to hear all about it.” Money wrote in a statement, “In the meantime, as much as we are helping… the cost of his treatment is so ridiculously high that we can’t make a dent in it without reaching out. It’s tough being in this business sometimes and not having the benefits of a 9 to 5 day job. a lot of musicians, Glenn included, don’t have health insurance and that makes a situation like a cancer diagnosis even more devastating.”
Money knows and understands that everyone has financial obligations, including himself with a wife, five kids and a mortgage.
Imploring fans to help as much as possible, no matter how big or small the contribution, Money goes on to say how much “it will be greatly appreciated by all of us in the E$ Family. I know times are tough, they’re tough for everyone, even rock & roll stars! But everyone pulling together and giving what they can, will make a difference. It’s the kind of thing this great country was built on!”
In closing Money said, “I am sharing the link with you, the best fans in the business, in hopes that you can help Glenny out. A donation in any amount is welcome and please share the link on your social media. Let’s get this to go viral!”
Symmonds to his fans, “I want to thank them for the amazing outpouring of love & kindness during this time.”
Last week we reported that Glenn Symmonds, longtime drummer for Eddie Money and solo artist, was hospitalized for the removal of a tumor and a biopsy of his bladder.
The results are in and it’s not the good news everyone was hoping for, as Symmonds is headed for more chemotherapy to rid his bladder of this nasty disease.
As Symmonds struggles to rid himself of cancer there’s one thing he faces that all musicians face at some point in their career – Medical bills.
It’s at times like these that musicians need your help.
Their music uplifts and entertains each and every one of us on a daily basis. Whether it’s Symmonds or another musician you may know facing insurmountable medical bills, make the move to help them out by purchasing their CD’s, merchandise, or, if a fund is available, donate to their fund.
There is some help out there for musicians in the form of education, although it’s lacking and may not help everyone – more on that in a minute.
I had a chance to ask Symmonds some questions about his recent diagnosis, his fans and his motivation.
CelebrityExaminer (CE): Was this something that happened all of a sudden, or was there warning signs?
Symmonds: There were warning signs as far back as January (4 months ago). There was blood in my urine. I was passing blood clots a couple times when urinating, which I mistook for premature kidney stones.
Symmonds:. I have a teenage son and I want to see him grow up and get married and become a father. I want to spend time with my grandchildren someday. I’ve been sober for 6 years and feel like I am living my life to the fullest right now…. enjoying my music, my friends, my family, and the love of a beautiful girl for what feels like the first time. I have a lot of living to do!
CE: How are you holding up in light of what is happening?
Symmonds: The initial shock of a cancer diagnosis floored me. It took me a few days to really absorb the diagnosis and get out of a ‘poor me’ state of mind. I have been on an emotional rollercoaster this past week, sometimes I am overwhelmed by the love and support of my fans and friends. I am really positive about my upcoming chemo treatment and optimistic about the results to come.
CE: Anything you want to share with your fans?
Syymonds: I want to thank them for the amazing outpouring of love & kindness during this time and let them know that while I missed a few gigs this weekend, I am back out on the road next week and plan on staying on the tour during my chemo treatment as long as I can.
CE: What music is currently helping you through this personal crisis?
Symmonds: I turn to the creative process to help me when in crisis mode. As soon as I was able to comfortably hold a guitar in my hands after the surgery, I was singing and writing. I am also keeping myself busy and happy by helping some of the younger musicians in town where I live with lessons and recording and mixing their work.
CE: Tami Landrum (Symmonds personal assistant and love interest) has been extremely vocal, updating your fans throughout your ordeal. Is there anything you would like to say to her publicly?
Symmonds: I would tell her she is the most giving person I have ever met and that she is beautiful inside and out, without even trying to be. She is smart, kind & loving… I feel so blessed that she is in my life. And then I would ask her to marry me!
CE: Musicians and other artists have historically had a difficult time when it comes to healthcare. Is there anything that you would suggest to other artists that might help them out before healthcare becomes an issue?
Symmonds: Stay in school! Seriously, here’s something people may not know… The pay scale that a musician works for in 2013 is the same as it was when I started out in my career in 1973. We haven’t received the cost of living raises like everyone else. There are also more musicians than ever looking for gigs these days and fewer opportunities to play. Just having a regular paying gig with a successful touring band is a blessing, insurance benefits are unheard of.
Again, Symmonds is not alone when it comes to musicians and medical insurance.
In March 2010, Future of Music Coalition (FMC) conducted a survey to determine how many musicians actually had medical coverage. The survey found that, of the 1,451 respondents, 33 percent said they do not have health insurance, almost twice the national average of 17 percent.
FMC found that 86 percent of the respondents said they couldn’t afford insurance, but after working with those same musicians through their Health Insurance Navigation Tool (HINT) program, they found that some of them could actually afford insurance.
Musicians are now faced with a new dilemma when it comes to healthcare. Obama-care mandates that in 2014 all individuals will be required to have health insurance. As components of Obama-care rollout, advocates, artist managers, service organizations and associations, will need to educate musicians about the changes in the law and how they can protect themselves as an individual with either private plans or public exchanges.
Longtime drummer for Eddie Money and solo artist Glenn Symmonds was hospitalized Monday morning for the removal of a tumor.
Symmonds’ personal assistant and love interest, Tami Landrum, posted to his Facebook page early Monday morning, “We are on the way to the hospital this morning to have a tumor removed & biopsies done.”
According to Tami’s post, Symmonds was diagnosed with bladder cancer last week and remains optimistic, since CAT scans indicate his kidneys are in good shape.
After high school, Symmonds headed to California from Spokane where he met Eddie Money. It all happened in Oakland when Money’s drummer didn’t show up for rehearsal. Money had heard Symmonds playing drums next door, so he asked him if he could fill in. Symmonds has been performing with Money off and on for over 39 years and tours regularly with Money and his band.
Symmonds was scheduled to appear this Friday with Eddie Money at the Thibodaux Fireman’s Fair in Thibodaus Louisiana.
Symmonds has performed with a host of other greats including The Cult, Etta James George Benson and many more. When Symmonds isn’t touring with Money he’s touring on his own.
The single “Railroad Man,” off of his first album is a tribute to his father, Robert “Guitar Whitey” Symmonds, an old-time, train-hopping hobo. Symmonds told his hometown newspaper the Spokesman Review, that his father rode the rails before settling down to start a family. When his children grew up and went their separate ways, Guitar Whitey walked to the intersection of Trent and Fancher and hopped the first train out of town.
According to Symmonds he’s out on the road at least 160 days out of the year as he continues to tour with Money and also as a solo act.
Here’s Tami’s post in full:
“For those of you who don’t know me I am Glenn’s personal assistant, faithful sidekick, and basically the love of his life Unfortunately, I am not hacking his Fbook with the best of news. Glenn was diagnosed with bladder cancer last week. We are on the way to the hospital this morning to have a tumor removed & biopsies done. On the bright side, a CAT scan showed his kidneys were good! I’ll be posting some updates during his recovery. Prayers are welcomed!”
Tami uploaded this photo prior to Glenn’s surgery with the caption ” ’bout ready to kick some cancer ass!”
UPDATE: Monday afternoon Symmonds was release from the hospital with doctors remaining optimistic. The tumor was removed and he was given a round of chemo directly to the affected area.
According to Tami she’s, “reading him all your comments & posts… all the love, prayers & support have really touched him. Thank you all – much appreciated from me. ~tam”
Sixty-two-year-old veteran rocker Eddie Money brought his Jingle Bell Rock tour to Thunder Valley Casino Resort on Thursday. Scheduled to appear was former Foreigner frontman Lou Gramm and former Jefferson Starship lead singer Mickey Thomas.
The day before their performance at Thunder Valley, it was announced that Gramm would not be performing for the remaining tour due to acute laryngitis, so Gramm was not in attendance.
As the concert kicked off with Money and Thomas taking the stage, the audience immediately started chanting, “Lou! Lou! Lou!” Money responded by explaining the situation and said they had added a couple of songs to their setlist to make up for the missing Gramm. This was followed by more than a few polite boos ““ is there really such a thing as a polite boo?
Money exited stage left while Thomas started singing “Jane.” Thomas wore a striped shirt with a loosely worn red Christmas tie, while he banged out “Sara,” “We Built This City,” “Nothings Going to Stop Us Now.” Thomas ended his set with “It’s Christmas Time Pretty Baby,” singing in the style of Elvis Presley.
The 62-year-old Thomas’ vocals really stood out throughout his set, sounding just as good as he did all those years ago, in particular when he sang Annie Lennox’s “Winter Wonderland.”
Backing Thomas was Money’s regular crew consisting of longtime band members Tommy Girvin (lead guitar) and Glenn Symmonds (drummer), with more recent additions Lee Beverly (bass) and Chris Groves (keyboards).
Following Thomas, Money came out singing “Baby Hold On” and “I Wanna Go Back.” As Money sang, he shuffled back and forth across the stage and even pulled out the saxophone to show everyone he can still play.
Rounding out the show, Money and Thomas took the stage together singing “Jingle Bell Rock” and a rocking version of “Jingle Bells.” For their encore they performed John Lennon’s “Happy Xmas (War Is Over).”
While Money’s vocals were not as pristine as Thomas’, he made up for it with his overall stage presence, sense of humor and kindness toward the audience, reaching out to shake hands with a few people in the front row.
Offstage, Money is extremely generous and cordial to all those around him, introducing himself to anyone standing near. His generosity doesn’t stop there.
Money is a strong supporter of the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation and the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, which helps support families of military personnel lost in service to our nation and for severely wounded service members and veterans.
Money is hoping fans will help bring some holiday cheer to heroic members of the armed forces by going to eddiemoney.com and purchasing his single “One More Soldier Coming Home.” All the proceeds will go to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.
The Jingle Bell Rock tour was originally started by Money. This past summer, Money performed at a benefit in a Los Angeles club where Gramm and Thomas also appeared. After some discussion they decided to work with Money and tour with him in the Jingle Bell Rock tour.
While this was Money’s show and he was the headliner, Gramm’s absence was a big disappointment for many of the fans in the audience. Especially after Foreigner just came through the area a couple of months ago with their new frontman Kelly Hansen leading the charge. Hansen did an awesome job and put on a high energy show ““ check out my review. I for one, was hoping to see the real deal – maybe next year.
Yes, the audience booed after they realized Lou wasn’t going to be there, but these diehard fans enjoyed the show nonetheless. It’s these types of fans that keep the old-school bands going. And it’s these types of bands that keep the old people going ““ and a little help from Geritol.