Buckethead Suffering from Potentially Fatal Heart Condition

  • Axl Rosenberg


Man oh man, 2017 has been a swell year. I’m having such a good time. So many good things are happening, I’m tired of winning so much. Aren’t you guys tired of winning so much? It’s like, “Enough with the good news already!”

So here is some very, very bad news.

The goddamn motherfucking genius known as Buckethead (his mommy and daddy call him Brian Carroll) recently revealed on the decidedly non-metal self-help podcast Coming Alive that he has been diagnosed with a potentially fatal heart condition which could end his life at pretty much any moment:

“Well really recently, I have a heart problem where my heart beats out of rhythm. It’s been doing it for a long time, but recently it just really kicked up and became really intense. I really didn’t know what was going on, I just tried to deal with it, and let it do what it did, and eventually it would stop, but it got really intense so I went to the doctor and they said, ‘You’re on the verge of having a stroke.’ I’m like, ‘Wow.’ Because I felt so good prior to having it, I was doing pretty well and everything.

“They suggested I had a thing called an ablation, they go in and freeze your heart. It’s supposed to do something with the nerves, because they said my heart was fine, but it could be a genetic thing, they didn’t really know. I had that procedure, and it didn’t really stop it, and I’m still dealing with it. I take medication, which is tough, because I never took anything my whole life, although if I eat food or drink something that’s probably worse anyway (laughs). So it’s been really difficult, because it’s scary because it comes on. Even walking across a room is difficult, luckily the medication I’m thankful for, because it’s kept it from going berserk, but it’s pretty intense.

“It seems like now I’m letting this thing sort of exist now in me, I can’t really escape it. I’m always aware of the intensity of my heartbeat, it’s just not something that I’d ever experienced, so it definitely kind of scares me. But I also see that it is also doing a lot of good, because I need to do all of the things I want to do.

“I just feel an urgency now.”

This is depressing on so many levels. Most selfishly, it makes me wonder it means for Buckethead’s live performances in the future, which are always amazing to watch, and often include extended dance breaks (not kidding). Less selfishly, it makes me despair for Buckethead and his loved ones.

There isn’t really much of a silver lining here. But Buckethead is notoriously, almost comically prolific; he releases two new records every week or something like that (I’m exaggerating, but this dude really has made a fuckton of albums). And that was before he began to “feel an urgency” as a result of his illness. So you won’t be shocked to learn that at the very least, he has no plans to stop producing new releases every possible chance he can:

“I mean the day after I had that procedure, I recorded a record with my friend. I just lied in bed and recorded it, because I felt like, I’m here still.

“I could be gone tomorrow, anybody could be gone, but that’s a heavy experience. I want to play right now, and I want to play that experience.”

Well, I’m gonna go listen to Colma and weep now. You can check out the entire interview below. This is the first time in years I’ve heard of Buckethead doing an interview as himself and not a hand puppet; it’s honestly pretty weird to hear his voice. Just saying.

[via Metal Insider -> Alternative Nation -> Ultimate Guitar]

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