Kayak cancel tour with The Flower Kings after Ton Scherpenzeel has heart attack

Kayak with Ton Scherpenzeel, centre (Image credit: InsideOut Music)

Kayak have been forced to withdraw from their December tour with The Flower Kings after keyboardist and bassist Ton Scherpenzeel suffered a heart attack over the weekend.

Scherpenzeel reports he’s “feeling reasonably OK, all things considered” but as he recuperates, he and Kayak will take a step back from future touring plans.

Scherpenzeel says: “I didn’t see this one coming. If the doctor had told me I had won the lottery without even having subscribed, I couldn't have been more surprised. My prize was a genuine heart attack.

“The doctor said it was just bad luck – basically it can happen to anyone, even with the right predisposition or a reasonable healthy lifestyle. I also understood that I had been lucky as well. It could have ended differently.

“I have no clue yet as to what the impact of this will have on our lives in the foreseeable future. In a couple of days I will go off radar as much as possible. No socials, so everything goes on hold.

“That includes Kayak too. There will be no European tour in December. It really is a pity, as we have been very much looking forward to it. I'm sorry for the band, crew, staff and audience, but my health has got to be my full priority.”

Scherpenzeel adds: “Mister Ton, as the nurses at the Kalamata Hospital called me, is feeling reasonably OK, all things considered – and as long as the heart keeps on pumping, the head will surely keep overflowing with new ideas to shape the future.”

The Flower Kings have moved quickly and drafted in Iamthemorning and Rikard Sjöblom for the run of December shows. 

The Flower Kings' Roine Stolt says: “Kayak, who were initially to be our touring partner, has had to pull out, due to serious and unexpected medical conditions of main guy Ton Scherpenzeel. We are all sad about this but wish for a speedy recovery and perhaps another chance to share the stage later on. 

"The brighter news is that we’ve managed to get the brilliant Iamthemorning to join us in a package show that will also include a set from Big Big Train and Beardfish genius Rikard Sjöblom. 

“We will all play our separate sets, but there will likely be guesting and as usual the grand finale is not to be missed! 

“We’re really looking forward to a great evening of expanding, young, vibrant prog music. New songs from The Flower Kings brand new double album Waiting For Miracles and bundles of classic Flower Kings and beautiful and groovy music from our new guests.”

Waiting For Miracles will be released on November 8 on 2CD, 2LP/ 2CD and on digital and streaming platforms through InsideOut Music.

The Flower Kings, Iamthemorning, Rikard Sjöblom 2019 tour
Dec 01: Hamburg Bahnhof St. Pauli, Germany
Dec 02: Hannover Musikzentrum, Germany
Dec 03: Piekary Slaskie OK Andaluzia, Poland
Dec 04: Poznan Klub U Bazyla, Poland
Dec 06: Deventer Burgerweeshuis, Netherlands
Dec 07: Zoetermeer De Boergerij, Netherlands
Dec 08: London Scala, UK
Dec 09: Dortmund Piano, Germany
Dec 10: Berlin Columbia Theater, Germany
Dec 11: Copenhagen Amager Bio, Denmark
Dec 12: Gothenburg Brewhouse, Sweden
Dec 14: Stockholm Kraken, Sweden

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent 35 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott keeps Louder’s buyer’s guides up to date, writes about the best deals for music fans, keeps on top of the latest tech releases and reviews headphones, speakers, earplugs and more. Over the last 10 years, Scott has written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog. He's previously written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald newspapers, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to tech reviews, video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.