Jack White Loses Voice, Japanese Fans Lose Out On Stripes Concerts

Band pledges to make triumphant return at Big Day Out festival later this month.

The last time around, all it took was an injured finger to derail some White Stripes concerts. This time the prognosis looks a bit more serious.

On Tuesday (January 10) the White Stripes posted a message on their Web site announcing that White’s doctors have instructed him not to speak or sing for the next two weeks, in order to rest his ailing cords. In addition to forcing the band to postpone a handful of Japanese dates, the announcement also brings up the question of just how White will articulate his thoughts — though the early money is on “wild gesticulations,” with “chalkboard hung around the neck” a close second (OK, not really).

A spokesperson for the band would not expound on White’s ailment but did add that there were concerns about the effects of travel on his vocal cords. For their part, the Stripes expressed disappointment in having to scrap the Japanese dates — which included two nights in Tokyo, plus gigs in Osaka and Nagoya — but pledged to make a triumphant return at the multidate Big Day Out festival beginning later this month in Australia and New Zealand.

“We sincerely apologize to our Japanese fans and friends and hope to reschedule dates as soon as we can,” the statement read. “For our friends in New Zealand and Australia, the band looks forward to seeing you at the Big Day Out.”

The White Stripes were previously forced to cancel a string of U.K. and U.S. gigs in 2003 after Jack broke his finger in a car accident in Detroit (see “Stripes’ Jack White Injures Finger In Car Accident” ).