“Is this the way to Amarillo” singer Tony Christie has spoken openly about his dementia diagnoses saying that he is determined to continue making music.

Speaking in bbc breakfast On Wednesday, January 25, Christie, whose real name is Anthony Fitzgerald, said: “If you start worrying about it, you’re finished. Ignore it, go ahead and do what you do.”

Now 79, Christie added: “I’ve always been, for 50 years, a fan of doing crossword puzzles and things, and all of a sudden I started finding it very difficult.”

That led to his wife encouraging him to get checked out and that’s when he was told, “you have impending dementia.

“I ignored it. I just said go ahead, and I just went ahead and worked.”

Continuing, he said: “The main thing was, and why I said it, is that a lot of people I’ve met who have it, are worried about it.

“And I’m not worried about that. I went to specialists and they gave me pills and little by little they have been working”.

The Conisbrough-born singer, whose other hits include I Did What I Did For Maria and Avenues And Alleyways, said he was hopeful a cure was not far away.

“I have a feeling that, in a few years, there will be tablets that will cure it. So I keep working.”

Christie released her latest album in time for Christmas and is preparing to perform a special show for her 80ththe.

He said: “I’m starting a big, big tour this year. It’s going to be very busy but I’m looking forward to it.

“And music, actually, I found out is part of a cure for dementia, so every time I go on stage and work it helps me.”

But with the disease affecting his memory, Tony Christie, who has spoken openly about his dementia diagnosis He said he now has the lyrics to his song displayed on a monitor saying, “Most of the time it’s there as insurance, but I manage to get through my shows, it’s great.

“But don’t forget, I’ve been singing for 60 years or whatever, and I have an album. There are 70 songs… that go back to 1967, a lot of songs”.


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