GRAMMY-winning jazz singer Al Jarreau is heading out on a gruelling tour with Yolanda Adams and NAJEE next month (JUL03) despite his spinal cord problems.

The MOONLIGHTING singer has emergency back surgery to relieve compression on his spinal cord in September (03) - abruptly cutting off his tour at that time - but managed to return to the concert trail just even weeks after surgery.

He says, "I'm going for the gusto. That energy coming from the audience was healing stuff. And it was very important for me to know that I could do it and that it was going to be all right."

But Jarreau admits he's still far from complete recovery.

He explains, "I lost some considerable ability with the collapse of the C7 disc in my neck. I'm not as nimble, so I'm seriously trying to do rehab and recover some balance and strength in my legs.

"But unless I start talking about it and praising God for the fact that I'm able to do what I'm doing, nobody knows the difference."

12/06/2003 21:06