Peter Frampton Prepares for Final Tour as Rare Disease Progresses

IBM will eventually rob him of the ability to play guitar well

March 5, 2019
Peter Frampton performs onstage at the TEC Awards during the 2019 NAMM Show

Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for NAMM

Peter Frampton is facing a painful reality. He eventually won’t be able to do what he’s done and made a living doing for decades: play guitar. The 68-year-old recently announced a farewell tour because of a rare disease.

Inclusion body myositis (IBM) is a progressive muscle disorder that results in weakness and atrophy. It is not fatal, but it is especially debilitating to someone who relies on quick fingers and hands.

Frampton told CBS This Morning he was diagnosed more than three years ago, but that the disease has started to advance more quickly in recent months – a point driven home when he took a bad fall on a boat.

“Going upstairs and downstairs is the hardest thing for me,” Frampton said. “I’m going to have to get a cane. The other thing I noticed – I can’t put things up over my head.”

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The British rocker is making the most of the prime playing time he has left. He’s recording dozens of tracks and planning to hit the road one last time. The trek begins on June 18th in Tulsa and runs through October 12th in Concord, CA but more dates could be added. Get the full schedule here.

Frampton is perhaps best known for wowing music lovers with his use of a talk box on his seminal double album Frampton Comes Alive. It’s one of the best-selling live albums of all-time and was seemingly a part of pretty much every rock fan’s vinyl collection after it was released in 1976.

In recent years, Frampton continued to record and tour. In 2000, he served as a technical adviser for Cameron Crowe’s Almost Famous. He wrote some of the original songs for the movie and made a cameo as a road manager.