The golden voice of Linda Ronstadt has been stilled. She was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease eight months ago and says that she can no longer sing.
Parkinson's Disease affects brain cells that control movement and coordination. As it progresses, it can leave a person unable to control movement normally. Primary motor signs of the disease are: tremor of the hands, arms, legs, jaw and face; rigidity or stiffness of the limbs and trunk; postural instability or impaired balance and coordination.
In what must be a singer's worst nightmare, the disease has left the 67-year old Rondstadt without the ability to sing. One can only imagine the heartbreak of not being able to soar through a song, anymore. And, she did soar.
Ronstadt's career lifted off in 1967 with folk-rock group, The Stone Poneys. Their hit single, "Different Drum," gave notice to the world that a brilliant singer had come among us. Her voice was pure, strong and full of sincerity.
After the band broke up, Rondstadt went on to a tremendous music career.
She has won 11 Grammy Awards over the years with her exquisite voice.
Her first Grammy win came in 1975 with her performance of Hank Williams', "I Can't Help If (If I'm Still In Love With You)."
Her heartbreaking lament, "Long, Long Time" sung in the tender tones of a lonely woman touches the soul and as she leaves her mark on your heart. She followed that up with one memorable record after another. "Blue Bayou," is one of her most enduring.
But, it was her version of the Clint Ballard, Jr. antagonistic, "You're No Good," that brought Rondstadt her only number one song. This track came from the Andrew Gold-produced album, "Heart Like A Wheel," which went platinum, selling more than a million albums in 1974 and revived her career.
Ronstadt undertook successful country collaborations blending her golden voice with those of Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris with the albums, "Trio" and then "Trio II." Hearing those voices blend is a bit of heaven.
Rondstadt continued to experiment with different styles of music by exploring pop standards and traditional Mexican music sung in Spanish.
She explained, "There's a lot of homesickness in Mexican music, a profound yearning because of the need to migrate, which is why I relate to it so much."
She also ventured onto the musical stage in, "The Pirates of Penzance."
Her last album was the 2006 endeavor, "Adieu False Heart," which showcases cajun music.
It is disheartening to know that no more music will come from Rondstadt, but there are over 30 albums of hers to keep her music alive.
Her new memoir, "Simple Dreams: A Musical Memoir" will be published on September 17. It does not, however, mention her battle with Parkinsons.