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Famous Musicians with Hearing Loss

It’s not just rock n’ roll stars who have a higher chance of developing hearing loss and tinnitus.

If you’re a musician, you’re probably already aware that you're more likely to have hearing loss than your non-musical friends. The blaring of speakers, the thump of the bass and drums are just a few of the potential triggers for noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus. Luckily, musicians, these days have access to high-quality earplugs to protect their ears from noise and loud volume – but for many older musicians, the damage has already been done

<h2>Neil Young</h2>
<p>Superstar Neil Young recorded &ldquo;Harvest Moon&rdquo; in 1992, marking a change to a softer sound than his previous recordings. He told MOJO Magazine that he &ldquo;didn&rsquo;t want to hear any loud sounds. I still have a little bit of tinnitus, but fortunately now I&rsquo;m not as sensitive to loud sounds as I was for a year after the mixing of &lsquo;Weld&rsquo; [in 1991]. My hearing&rsquo;s not perfect, but it&rsquo;s okay.&rdquo;</p>
<h2>Chris Martin</h2>
<p>In speaking about his hearing issues, the Coldplay musician told the UK&rsquo;s Action on Hearing Loss that &ldquo;looking after your ears is, unfortunately, something you don&rsquo;t think about until there&rsquo;s a problem. I&rsquo;ve had tinnitus for about 10 years, and since I started protecting my ears it hasn&rsquo;t gotten any worse (knock on wood). But I wish I&rsquo;d thought about it earlier.&rdquo;</p>

Neil Young

Superstar Neil Young recorded “Harvest Moon” in 1992, marking a change to a softer sound than his previous recordings. He told MOJO Magazine that he “didn’t want to hear any loud sounds. I still have a little bit of tinnitus, but fortunately now I’m not as sensitive to loud sounds as I was for a year after the mixing of ‘Weld’ [in 1991]. My hearing’s not perfect, but it’s okay.”

Chris Martin

In speaking about his hearing issues, the Coldplay musician told the UK’s Action on Hearing Loss that “looking after your ears is, unfortunately, something you don’t think about until there’s a problem. I’ve had tinnitus for about 10 years, and since I started protecting my ears it hasn’t gotten any worse (knock on wood). But I wish I’d thought about it earlier.”

<h2>Phil Collins</h2>
<p>Phil Collins chalked his 2011 retirement from his legendary music career up to health reasons – one of which was the loss of hearing in his left ear. Collins did later return to music, but with a focus on composing rather than performing.</p>
<h2>Peter Townsend</h2>
<p>Pete Townsend, best known for his time with “The Who,” is very open about his hearing loss and often blames it on studio headphones.</p>
<p>It may not come as too much of a surprise to learn that rock musicians run a greater risk of hearing loss. A Finnish study of classical musicians found that 15 percent of them suffered from some type of hearing loss. “Temporary tinnitus” during rehearsals affected a full 41 percent of them. Despite these statistics, however, fewer than 25 percent of the classical musicians studied used hearing protection.</p>
<p>The good news is that noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus can be avoided. If you’re a musician – no matter what type of music you play – talk to your hearing care professional about how best to protect your ears from potential damage due to exposure to loud noise.</p>

Phil Collins

Phil Collins chalked his 2011 retirement from his legendary music career up to health reasons – one of which was the loss of hearing in his left ear. Collins did later return to music, but with a focus on composing rather than performing.

Peter Townsend

Pete Townsend, best known for his time with “The Who,” is very open about his hearing loss and often blames it on studio headphones.

It may not come as too much of a surprise to learn that rock musicians run a greater risk of hearing loss. A Finnish study of classical musicians found that 15 percent of them suffered from some type of hearing loss. “Temporary tinnitus” during rehearsals affected a full 41 percent of them. Despite these statistics, however, fewer than 25 percent of the classical musicians studied used hearing protection.

The good news is that noise-induced hearing loss and tinnitus can be avoided. If you’re a musician – no matter what type of music you play – talk to your hearing care professional about how best to protect your ears from potential damage due to exposure to loud noise.

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