Little Feat singer-guitarist Paul Barrere (pictured at right above at JazzFest 2011 with guest Anders Osborne) is taking a leave of absence. He says, "In 1994 I was diagnosed with Hepatitis C, a very aggressive virus that attacks the liver, which has affected many of my generation. For the past 20 years I have managed to control the effects of the disease with lifestyle changes and the love and support of my family and friends. During this time I’ve had regular checkups with a team of specialists at UCLA. These doctors have now advised that I should begin a treatment designed to eradicate the virus from my body. The treatment requires that I stay off the road for the next year, in order to give it the best possible chance for a successful result... So, this isn’t goodbye by any stretch of the imagination. It’s just another crossroad to pass. I intend to get through this in the best way possible and get back to pickin’ and playin’ as soon as I am able."

But Barrere is no dummy. He'll start his year off after Little Feat’s next Feat Fan Excursion in Jamaica in March.

Little Feat drummer Richie Hayward died of liver cancer in August 2010.