Neil Diamond is coming to terms with the fact that he has Parkinson’s disease.
In an interview that will appear this weekend on CBS Sunday Morning, the “Hello Again” singer, 82, says it has only been “in the last few weeks” that he has accepted his diagnosis, which he initially revealed in 2018.
“Yet, somehow, the cyclone of my life has passed, and things have grown quite quiet, as quiet as this recording studio,” says reporter Anthony Mason.
“And I enjoy it. I find that I like myself better. I’m easier on people and myself, and the beat keeps going, and it will continue long after I’m gone.”
The musician quit touring five years ago, but that hasn’t stopped him from communicating with his passionate followers.
“I’m still doing it,” he says in the interview. “But this is me; this is what I must accept.” “And I’m willing to do it, and, OK, so this is the hand that God has dealt me, and I have to make the best of it, and I am.”
During a performance of A Beautiful Noise, a musical about his life, in December, the New York native shocked fans and audience members with an impromptu rendition of his famous song “Sweet Caroline.”
The performance was his first in his hometown since 2017, and it was a rare sighting of the music legend.
Diamond strolled the red carpet with his wife, Katie McNeil, before his surprise curtain-call singalong and entered the theater to a standing ovation. Fans shouted and sang along to the 1969 pop classic when he took the mic from his box seat in the venue.
Mason asks the celebrity what was most challenging about seeing his younger self portrayed on stage during the conversation on Sunday.
“It was all pretty difficult,” Diamond recalls. “I was a little ashamed, flattered, and afraid.”
“What were you afraid of?” Mason asks.
“Getting discovered is the scariest thing you can aspire for because we all have a façade, and the truth be known to all. I’m not some big star. I’m just me,” Diamond explains.