Mike Peters has begun chemotherapy treatments for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL). The Alarm frontman was diagnosed earlier this month and revealed his condition in a letter to fans on the band’s official Web site.
“The good news is that although my illness is not curable, it is treatable,” Peters writes, relaying his doctor’s optimistic prediction: “It is a disease I will probably die with, rather than of.”
This diagnosis came a decade after the Wales-based artist was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, which was pressed into remission by his immune system.
Since walking away from the original lineup of the Alarm in 1991, Peters has pursued a solo career. In addition to forming the short-lived Colorsound with Cult guitarist Billy Duffy, he has toured and recorded with new incarnations of the band that made him famous, the latest being the Alarm MMVI.
He has most recently toured with the Damned’s Captain Sensible, ex-Stray Cats bassist Slim Jim Phantom and Spear Of Destiny drummer Kirk Brandon under the Dead Men Walking banner. (Peters chronicled the collective’s fall tour for the Billboard.com Tour Diary.) Along with an Alarm MMVI album, “Under Attack,” due in early 2006 in the U.K. via EMI, the Dead Men are also planning to record a full album.
Despite his chemotherapy treatments, Peters also plans to keep a regular performance schedule, though restricting those commitments to the U.K. “until I have got this thing under control.” First up on the agenda is the Gathering, an annual Alarm/Peters-centric event set for Jan. 27-28 in Llandudno, Wales.
“My outlook for the future is still the same as for any healthy person of my age. The only difference is that now I have to learn how to live with cancer,” says Peters, who intends to detail his treatment in a diary on the Web site. “If I respond well to the chemotherapy, I can hopefully put the cancer into remission for another 10 years or even longer.”