Old rocker Domino toppled by tiredness

BY DAVID LISTER

Arts Correspondent

The admission of a Mr Domino to the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield has brought to a premature end the unique touring combination of over- 60 rock'n'rollers Chuck Berry, Little Richard and Fats Domino.

It has also left claims by the three that you're never too old to rock looking a little lame.

A Sheffield doctor has now warned Mr Domino that "performing live could severely damage his health".

The American star Fats Domino, 67, was taken to hospital on Wenesday night after the first of the trio's three concert UK tour at Shefield Arena. On doctor's orders, he also pulled out of last night's concert at Wembley Arena.

Just before the Sheffield concert Little Richard had laughed off suggestions that rockers should retire at 60, saying: "No one over 60 ever says that."

But for Fats Domino, the pounding pianist and singer of "Blueberry Hill'' and "Aint That A Shame'', the strain proved too much. A statement from his promoter, Jennie Halsall, said: "Towards the end of his set he started to feel very unwell and he knew that something was wrong.

"Doctors confirmed that Fats had a serious infection and he has been told that he must rest.

"They have given him strict instructions not to perform live until his condition improves or it will severely damage his health."

Ron Little, spokesman for the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield, said: "He was given a full medical check and it was clear he was pretty tired.''

A Jennie Halsall spokeswoman said the rock pioneer was resting at a hotel and it was too early to say whether he would be able to play the final date of the tour, at the National Exhibition Centre, Birmingham, on Saturday, "but we're keeping our fingers crossed".

"We have spoken to Fats and he understands that people are going to be upset that he won't be at Wembley tonight, but nobody is more upset than he is."

Domino's health scare compounded an unhappy week for the New Orleans- born singer, who learned on Monday that his sister had died.

Born Antoine Domino, he has sold millions of records, outstripping every Fifties contemporary except Elvis Presley.

As a child he played for pennies in honky tonk clubs, mastering a classic New Orleans piano style and rising to fame in the mid-Forties. Regularly hitting the charts over the decades, he has gone on touring and recording.

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