The Zombies’ Rod Argent Suffers Stroke, Retires From Touring

July 11, 2024
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“Rod still firmly intends to continue his other creative joy of writing and recording with the Zombies,” the group’s managers said in a statement

After surviving a recent stroke, the Zombies‘ keyboardist and songwriter, Rod Argent, has decided to retire from touring and focus on songwriting. The group’s management announced the news on Thursday. The group canceled all upcoming live dates.

“Rod had recently returned home from a triumphant Zombies tour of the U.K. and spent a weekend in London with his beloved wife, Cathy … before the stroke occurred,” managers Chris Tuthill and Cindy da Silva said in a statement. “He was hospitalized overnight and released the next day. Doctors have advised that Rod will need several months of rest and recuperation.”

Argent has endured other health scares in recent years and had told management he wanted to sunset the touring part of his career. The stroke hastened the decision. “Rod still firmly intends to continue his other creative joy of writing and recording with the Zombies and has already been back at his piano for some much-needed ‘Bach therapy,’” the statement said.

Argent co-founded the Zombies in the early Sixties. Singer Colin Blunstone joined a year later, and the group rode the British Invasion into the States with “She’s Not There,” “Tell Her No,” and, later, “Time of the Season,” which came off their critically acclaimed Odessey and Oracle album. After the Zombies broke up, Argent formed a band simply called Argent in 1969. That group scored hits with “Hold Your Head Up” and “God Gave Rock and Roll to You.” Argent retired from touring in 1975 but rejoined the Zombies in 1999 for a short run of shows that blossomed into a reunion.

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“All upcoming performances by the Zombies will be canceled,” Thursday’s statement read. “However, our second annual Begin Here Festival in St. Albans, U.K. (November 8 -10) will continue. … Our hope is to replace the scheduled Zombies performance with a special show honoring Rod, and ask fans to hold on to their tickets until we’ve had time to regroup and announce new plans.”

Blunstone will still honor the dates he scheduled to perform his solo album, One Year.



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