Elvis Costello has cancelled his remaining European tour dates after undergoing the surgical removal of a "very aggressive cancerous malignancy."
Costello, who is 63, said he was advised to take a break from the tour he is currently on, which sees him playing two-hour-long shows every night.
The nature of the cancer has not been revealed, but Costello wrote about his lucky escape in a statement on his website and urged his fans to seek similar medical attention if they were concerned.
"Six weeks ago my specialist called me and said, 'You should start playing the Lotto'. He had rarely, if ever, seen such a small but very aggressive cancerous malignancy that could be defeated by a single surgery.
"I was elated and relieved that our European summer tour could go ahead. Post-surgical guidelines for such surgery, recommend three weeks to four weeks recovery depending on whether you are returning to a desk job or an occupation that involves physical work or travel."
He added that he continued to play in Belgium, Holland and the UK, but Costello would need to take a break to rest.
"The spirit has been more than willing but I have to now accept that it is going to take longer than I would have wished for me to recover my full strength," he added.
"Therefore, I must reluctantly cancel all the remaining engagements of this tour."
Costello advised his fans: "Take very good care of your loved ones but Gentleman, do talk to you friends — you'll find you are not alone — seek your doctor's advice if you are in doubt or when it is timely and act as swiftly as you may in these matters. It may save your life. Believe me, it is better than playing roulette."