Appendicitis-hit Elton John 'grateful to be alive'
(FILES) In this file picture taken on July 3, 2013 British singer-songwriter Elton John performs on stage during the Poupet festival in Saint-Laurent-sur-Sevre, western France. Elton John has postponed a series of concerts after he was diagnosed with appendicitis it was announced on July 9, 2013. AFP PHOTO/ JEAN-SEBASTIEN EVRARD

Appendicitis-hit Elton John 'grateful to be alive'



Elton John says he is grateful to be alive after learning he had been playing European tour dates while suffering from undiagnosed appendicitis. The 66-year-old musician is quoted in The Sun newspaper Wednesday as saying he had struggled through the shows in pain, thinking he had food poisoning.

He later learned: "I was a ticking time bomb. I guess I could have died at any time."

He added: "I feel so lucky and grateful to be alive."

On Tuesday John canceled a show in London's Hyde Park and other summer dates while he is treated for an inflamed appendix and surrounding abscess.

He is due to have surgery in the next few weeks after treatment with antibiotics.

John's new album, "The Diving Board," is due out in September.

- Associated Press