Geordie star Sam Fender has announced he is “taking some time off the road” to look after his mental health, after admitting that he was “burnt out” from touring.
The Newcastle-based rocker said it would be “completely hypocritical of me” to advocate for discussion on the topic without looking after his own mental wellbeing.
In a post on social media, he apologised to fans and said he would be cancelling upcoming headline shows in the US, shows with Florence And The Machine and his appearance at the Life Is Beautiful Festival.
“It seems completely hypocritical of me to advocate discussion on mental health and write songs about it if I don’t take the time to look after my own mental health,” the musician wrote.
“I’ve neglected myself for over a year now and haven’t dealt with things that have deeply affected me.
“It’s impossible to do this work on myself while on the road, and it’s exhausting feigning happiness and wellness for the sake of business.
“My friends and colleagues have been worried about me for a while and it’s not going to get better unless I take the time to do so.”
The 28-year-old added he was “eternally overwhelmed” by the love and support of his fans and hated letting them down, but said that his mental state was beginning to affect his performances.
“I refuse to go out there and not give it my all every time, as you all deserve nothing less,” he said.
It comes shortly after Fender announced a huge homecoming gig at Newcastle United’s stadium, St James’ Park, next summer.
I always joked that one day we might play St James' Park in Newcastle, and now we're actually gonna play it on the 9th June next year. It's gonna be such a special moment and I hope you all join us for it 🖤🤍 tickets on sale next Friday 9th Sept, presale info below x pic.twitter.com/gUHg4CD9fU
— Sam Fender (@samfendermusic) September 2, 2022
He said that the show, scheduled for June 9 2023, was a “childhood dream come true”.
In his post announcing the upcoming cancellations, he added: “Super excited for Australia in late November and everything to come in 2023 – St James’ Park man, f****** unbelievable.
“I can’t express how grateful we are to have such an awesome fan base.
“I’ve met a fair few of you over the years and those encounters have genuinely restored my faith in humanity, you’re all sound as f***.”
Signing off, he said: “Me and the boys are burnt out and we need this time. Thank you for always sticking by us.”
Fender released his debut solo album Hypersonic Missiles in September 2019, following it up with second album Seventeen Going Under in October 2021.
He won an Ivor Novello this year for best song musically and lyrically for its title track Seventeen Going Under, written about his teenage years and the difficulty of growing up.