Rod Stewart was one of the performers at the Platinum Party at the Palace, the star-studded concert celebrating Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee over the weekend. Rod was criticized for his performance of the Neil Diamond hit “Sweet Caroline” at the event, with some saying he sounded off-key. Now his wife, Penny Lancaster, is defending him, saying the rock legend was just recovering from COVID.
Appearing on the British TV show Loose Women Thursday, Penny explained that the BBC insisted that Rod sing “Sweet Caroline” — a British soccer anthem — by telling him it was the queen’s favorite. “So he didn’t have much of a choice there,” Penny noted.
Rod said as much during the show, literally telling the crowd, “The BBC made me sing it, join in and make it comfortable for me.”
But in addition to Rod singing a song he wasn’t comfortable with, Penny said there were other extenuating circumstances.
“It was very, very touch and go and he was so nervous leading up to it,” she said. “He [had performed for] three weeks in Vegas and caught COVID just after the last show. He came home and was past the 10-day period of being contagious but he lost his voice. So the sound check on the Wednesday — he went along and wore a mask but had no voice.”
She added, “So he went for another rehearsal on the Friday … he wasn’t quite on, but he didn’t want to disappoint anybody. It wasn’t the Rod Stewart show; it was for the nation and for everybody to come together for the queen and he wanted to please the people, so that was the song.”
On Rod’s Instagram, he only posted the other song he performed: his hit “Baby Jane.”
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