Parkinson's stops Ronstadt singing
LINDA Ronstadt, the onetime 'First Lady of Rock', is no longer able to sing because of Parkinson's disease.
The 67-year-old, who has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide and is regarded as the most successful female rock singer of the Seventies, said she was diagnosed eight months ago and "can't sing a note".
In an interview with AARP Magazine, the singer said she began to show symptoms eight years ago.
"I couldn't sing and I couldn't figure out why," she said. "I knew it was mechanical. I knew it had to do with the muscles, but it didn't occur to me to go to a neurologist."
She was "completely shocked" when finally diagnosed. "I wouldn't have suspected that in a million, billion years," she said.
Ronstadt now uses sticks to walk on uneven ground and a wheelchair when travelling.
During her career, Ronstadt won 11 Grammy Awards as well as two Country Music Awards and an Emmy.
In 1978, she made an estimated $12m, equivalent to $43m (€32m) today.
Labelled "Rock's Venus" by Rolling Stone magazine, she was also known for her relationship with Jerry Brown, the governor of California.
Although she never married, she adopted a daughter, Mary, in 1990 and a son, Carlos, in 1994. Her autobiography, Simple Dreams, is due out next month, though it reportedly does not deal with her Parkinson's.