Country Music Hall of Fame member Alan Jackson has revealed he has spent the past decade battling Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, a degenerative nerve condition that impacts the peripheral nervous system and causes balance problems.
During an interview with TODAY’s Jenna Bush Hager, the 62-year-old star discussed living with CMT, which Jackson says has begun to affect his balance. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, there is no cure for the condition, but it is not typically life threatening and can be managed with therapy.
“I have this neuropathy and neurological disease,” Jackson told TODAY. “It’s genetic that I inherited from my daddy … There’s no cure for it, but it’s been affecting me for years, and it’s getting more and more obvious. 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.”
Despite his battle against CMT, Jackson said he doesn’t plan on giving up touring anytime soon.
“I never wanted to do the big retirement tour, like people do, then take a year off and then come back,” Jackson said. “I think that’s kinda cheesy. And I’m not saying I won’t be able to tour. I’ll try to do as much as I can.”
Jackson is slated to perform a headlining concert at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville on Oct. 8.
In May, Jackson released the album Where Have You Gone, which became his 15th yop 10 album on the Billboard 200 chart. The 21-song album includes 15 songs penned solely by Jackson. In the recently released video for the album’s title track, Jackson honors country music history while performing center stage at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium, as the video incorporates images of late country music legends such as George Jones, Tammy Wynette and Patsy Cline.