Blondie guitarist Chris Stein will miss UK tour with heart issues

20 April 2022, 12:09

Blondie's Debbie Harry attends 2021 Met Gala

By Mayer Nissim

Former Sex Pistols bassist Glen Matlock is joining the group while Chris Stein sits out their upcoming live shows.

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Blondie's guitarist Chris Stein has announced that he will be missing the band's upcoming UK live shows because of health issues.

The group were originally due to play a clutch of arena shows last November, but the shows were moved to this spring as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Original support act Garbage were replaced by ex-Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr – who collaborated with Blondie on their last album Pollinator – and now Chris Stein will be sitting out the shows.

"I'm sad and frustrated to report that I'm not going out with the next bunch of Blondie touring," Stein said in a statement on social media.

"I've been dealing with a dumbass condition called Atrial Fibrillation or AFib which is irregular heart beats and combined with the meds I take for it I'm too fatigued to deal."

He added: I'm still all in with recording and other band projects and I should be out for discussions etc later on.

"The band will be great and Glen Matlock will be joining them on bass. That's it, I'm fine, I'm around here and I love you all."

Stein and singer Debbie Harry are the only ever-presents in the Blondie lineup, having formed the group when they left The Stilettoes in the early 1970s.

Blondie - Call Me (Official Video)

The group's upcoming tour dates are as follows:

  • April 22 – Glasgow The SSE Hydro
  • April 24 – Cardiff Motorpoint Arena
  • April 26 – London The O2
  • April 28 – Brighton Centre
  • April 29 – Hull Bonus Arena
  • May 1 – Manchester AO Arena
  • Aprll 2 – Liverpool M&S Bank Arena
  • April 4 – Leeds First Direct Arena
  • April 5 – Nottingham Motorpoint Arena
  • April 7 – Birmingham Utilita Arena

Last summer, Blondie released the six-track live EP Blondie: Vivir en la Habana (Live from Havana) and teased the release of some brand new music.

Blondie - Atomic (Official Video)

"It's at a very elementary stage," Harry said of the planned album, which is being recorded with producer John Congleton

The plan is to feature covers of "some obscure tracks" among the dozen-odd songs planned for the record.

"We've been assembling different tracks that we like," Debbie told BBC News.

"And I think the next step would be to get into rehearsals and make some [demos]. I think we're all kind of relieved that we can be in the same room with each other again."