06/07/2018 10:44 BST

Elvis Costello Cancels European Tour To Recover From Cancer Treatment Surgery

'It is going to take longer than I would have wished for me to recover my full strength.'

Elvis Costello has revealed he has been forced to cancel the remainder of his European tour, after undergoing surgery to treat “a small but very aggressive cancerous malignancy”.

The British singer/songwriter issued a statement via his official website confirming that he has been urged to take a break from touring and rest, following the operation.

He explained: “Six weeks ago my specialist called me and said, ’you should start playing the Lotto.′

“He had rarely, if ever, seen such a small but very aggressive cancerous malignancy that could be defeated by a single surgery. I was elated and relieved that our European summer tour could go ahead.”

Tabatha Fireman via Getty Images
Elvis Costello performing in Brighton last week

While Costello noted that post-surgical guidelines recommend around a month’s recovery time “depending on whether you are returning to a desk job or an occupation that involves physical work or travel”, he resumed his tour and noted that he was “almost fooled into thinking normal service had been resumed”.

However, he said, following a show in Amsterdam on Thursday: “The spirit has been more than willing but I have to now accept that it is going to take longer than I would have wished for me to recover my full strength. Therefore, I must reluctantly cancel all the remaining engagements of this tour.”

Costello had been scheduled to perform shows in the UK, Croatia, Austria, Norway and Sweden before the end of the month, but these shows will no longer be going ahead.

Amanda Edwards via Getty Images
Costello at a screening of 'Film Stars Don't Die In Liverpool' last year

Apologising to ticket-holders in the cities his tour was yet to reach Costello concluded: “I would rather disappoint our friends there by not appearing than in pressing on with a show that is compromised and eventually puts my health at risk.

To leave you with some more optimistic news, The Imposters and I - together with several of our other friends - have made a magnificent new record of which we are truly proud. It will be issued in October, I believe. We will return at the soonest opportunity to play that music and your favourite songs that still make sense to us all.

“Take very good care of your loved ones but [gentlemen], do talk to [your] friends - you’ll find you are not alone - seek your doctor’s advice if you are in doubt or when it is timely and act as swiftly as you may in these matters. It may save your life. Believe me, it is better than playing roulette.”