Sir Elton John is recovering in hospital from a serious case of e-coli bacterial infection and influenza that forced him to cancel a string of concerts, but he hopes to return to the stage soon, a spokesman said today (Nov. 2).

John, 62, postponed five gigs in England and Ireland starting with an October 23 date in Sheffield, and has also pulled out of three U.S. concerts scheduled for November 4, 7 and 10 at which he was to appear with Billy Joel.

His spokesman confirmed that the singer of hits including "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" and "Rocket Man" was in hospital for his condition but that he was "absolutely fine." He was admitted to London's King Edward VII Hospital on Friday (Oct. 30).

Elton was admitted to King Edward VII Hospital in Central London on Friday and is not expected to return to the stage for another two weeks.

He added that John hoped to be back on the road and rejoining Joel on Nov. 14. Joel is due to perform on that date at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, California.