Neil Diamond released an album, which is a new compilation of the singer's four bestselling Christmas albums.
Neil Diamond has sold more than 130 million records worldwide and received honors like the Songwriters Hall of Fame, Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame, Kennedy Centre Honours, and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, according to The Australian Jewish News.
So, in 2018, when he announced that he will not be touring anymore after having been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, everyone was shocked. But that didn't mean he would stop singing and songwriting. “I’m working on new songs right now,” he assured his fans. “I always have a scrap of paper or a pad around to jot down ideas. Then, when I have more time, I develop them. It’s part of my life,” he had told Parade. According to him, the quality of his voice hadn't changed much. The neurodegenerative disorder didn't seem to have affected his voice like Lisa Ronstadt. “In a strange way, I think I’m singing better than ever,” Diamond said. “It’s probably because I’m not on the road singing full-out and tearing up my voice. So it’s in very good shape, which I didn’t expect.” He added, “I take my medication. I do my exercises and my workouts.”
The musician also spoke about the emotional impact of the disease. "I don’t deal with it. I think I’m in denial or something. I feel fine," he had said. "And it’s music—I’ve been doing it since I was a teenager. I don’t tense up when I get in front of a microphone. That’s when I loosen up and let it all hang out.”
When asked how he feels about entering the ninth decade, he said in 2021, "On the whole, I feel pretty good about it. I didn’t think I would make it this far. It’s a lot of years, but I have to accept it. So I’m going to accept it." He added, “I know I’m lucky to reach this point. Maybe I’ll write some new songs about it. I’m just happy to be around.”
On October 28, 2022, he released an album, A Neil Diamond Christmas, a new compilation of his four best-selling Christmas albums. "When I was a Jewish kid growing up in Brooklyn, I never got to celebrate Christmas," Diamond said about Christmas, last year. “Now, as an adult, I can do whatever I want. My wife loves Christmas, and so do I. We celebrate both Hanukkah and Christmas, which we call Christmukkah.”
While he enjoys being home, Diamond admitted that he misses performing. “But I’ll have to deal with it. In my heart, I secretly think, Well, maybe I can do a few more shows,” he said.
It's a tradition for Boston Red Sox fans to sing Diamond's 1969 hit, Sweet Caroline, every year, and this year in June they got to sing it with Diamond himself at Fenway Park. It was a rare public appearance for Diamond, 81, as reported by Best Life. The last time the singer performed at the stadium was in 2013. Diamond was joined in singing the song by actor Will Swenson, who acts as Diamond in an upcoming musical, A Beautiful Noise, based on the singer's life.
Play it now! Play it now! 🎶 Head to the #ABeautifulNoise website to stream the full Cracklin' Rosie Music Video and Preorder our Original Cast Recording now. https://t.co/ooFdZ8lK2b @NeilDiamond pic.twitter.com/o7FK30lMTE— A Beautiful Noise (@beautifulnoise) September 28, 2022
Diamond re-tweeted the video of his performance and wrote, "Thank you @thewillswenson and the cast of @beautifulnoise for joining me in singing last night at Fenway! 'Good times never seemed so good!'"
In February, it was announced that Universal Music Group had acquired Diamond’s song and master recording catalogs in their entirety. The deal also includes any future recordings by the singer and the rights to the recordings of 110 unreleased tracks, an unreleased album, and long-form, archival videos, according to udiscovermusic.
Cover Image Source: Getty Images/Larry Busacca / Staff