Due to a number of health issues, including a knee problem which will require surgery soon, former IRON MAIDEN singer Paul Di'Anno has announced that he will stop touring next year.
In a statement to his fans released earlier today, Paul said, "I am gonna be 'pulling the plug' next year 2013, and making it my 'farewell tour'... It was good whilst it lasted."
According to Michael Salenius, Di'Anno's Swedish booking manager and tour manager, next year will be "a big, fantastic" last touring year for Paul, with a lot of solo shows, festival appearances and Di'Anno vs. Blaze Bayley concerts. You will also see various guest musicians joining Paul on stage.
Di'Anno recorded two classic albums with IRON MAIDEN before being fired and replaced by Bruce Dickinson. He went on to front a number of other bands, including KILLERS and BATTLEZONE, and released several solo records.
On August 27, 2011, Di'Anno played his first show since serving time in a U.K. prison after he falsely collected U.K. government benefits by claiming he suffered nerve damage to his back that prevented him from working.
After serving his jail term in early 2011, Di'Anno issued a short statement in which he thanked his fans for their support and claimed that he "managed not to drop the soap" during his stint behind bars.
Di'Anno, 53, was sentenced to nine months for swindling £45,000 (approximately $72,000) in benefits. He was told he would serve at least four and a half months of the sentence behind bars before being released on conditional bail.
D'Anno was reportedly busted when investigators at Department Of Work And Pensions (DWP) received an anonymous tip that he was still singing. They then found videos and pictures on YouTube and the rocker's own web site of Di'Anno "energetically leaping around on stage, singing to fans around the world."
Di'Anno completed his first North American tour in early 2010, 17 years after he was deported following a prison term for guns and drug offenses.
"In 1991 I did a couple of stints in jail for guns and drugs," Di'Anno explained in a 2010 interview. "I was stupid. But after I'd done my stretch they still treated me like a criminal. And I was — but I wasn't that bad. So I didn't feel good about America. The government, not the people.
"Prison was tough, but I'm tougher. I was nobody's bitch, put it that way. You've got to do it; otherwise people will walk all over you."