In an interview with Rolling Stone, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer said he immediately sought out testing when he developed a cough and started running a fever. He did test positive, but he downplayed the severity of his illness. “My symptoms are really pretty mild, so I don’t require any kind of medication and certainly not hospitalization or anything like that,” Browne said.
What the 71-year-old rocker really wanted to drive home in speaking publicly about his diagnosis was that everyone should be staying at home just like he is, whether they have symptoms or not. “So many people that have it aren’t going to be tested,” he said. “They don’t have symptoms, but they might have it and might be able to pass it on. That’s what younger readers need to understand: They need to take part in the global response to stop the spread. That means not going anywhere, not getting into contact with anybody, not seeing anybody.”
Browne is pretty certain he picked up the virus on his recent trip to New York for the Love Rocks NYC benefit, which moved forward on March 12 as planned but, for the first time, live-streamed and with no audience because of early coronavirus cautions. “Now I wish I hadn’t gone to New York and done this benefit,” he admitted.
“You have to assume you have it,” Browne added of the mentality everyone needs to have during this pandemic. “You need to assume that you in some way could very easily pass it to someone else.”
A rep for Browne confirmed his comments to Billboard.