The Tragically Hip frontman Gord Downie diagnosed with terminal brain cancer

The band will embark on one final tour together this summer

Tragically Hip

Photo by Scott Gardner / The Hamilton Spector

Gord Downie, co-founder and frontman of Canadian alt-rock institution The Tragically Hip, has been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer.

The band confirmed the “tough news” in a statement posted to their website Tuesday morning. “A few months ago, in December, Gord Downie was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. Since then, obviously, he’s endured a lot of difficult times, and he has been fighting hard. In privacy along with his family, and through all of this, we’ve been standing by him.

Despite the diagnosis, Downie will join his bandmates for one final tour this summer. “So after 30-some years together as the Tragically Hip, thousands of shows, and hundreds of tours… We’ve decided to do another one. This feels like the right thing to do now, for Gord, and for all of us,” the band explained.

“What we in the Hip receive, each time we play together, is a connection; with each other; with music and it’s magic; and during the shows, a special connection with all of you, our incredible fans. So, we’re going to dig deep, and try to make this our best tour yet. We hope you can come out and join us this summer – details and dates will be coming this week.”

Downie, 52, founded The Tragically Hip in 1984 alongside Gord Sinclair and Rob Baker. To date, they’ve released 12 studio albums, nine of which went No. 1 in Canada, and earned 14 Juno Awards.

Read the full statement below.