Linda Ronstadt Shares Heartbreaking Details of Battle with Supranuclear Palsy: ‘Lucky I Can Still Read’

by Samantha Whidden

Country music legend Linda Ronstadt is speaking about her experience with her constant battle with a brain disorder called Supranuclear Palsy.

In a recent interview with Closer Weekly, Linda Ronstadt discusses how the disease has made her unable to sing or even perform with musical instruments. “I can’t play the guitar or piano, and I can’t sing at all,” she states. “I miss it and I miss knitting and I can’t do that either. I’m just lucky I can still read.”

Linda Ronstadt describes her life as “fairly tranquil” despite the constant struggles with the brain disorder. “I have a lot of support and a lot of family and friends, so I am content,” Ronstadt reveals. She also admits that YouTube has endless operatic performances that keep her entertained. 

Linda Ronstadt states that while she likes listening to music, she doesn’t listen to her own records. “I like this girl, Marisoul, who sings with a band called La Santa. I also like Billie Eilish.”

Linda Ronstadt Knew At The Age Of Two That She Was Going To Sing 

Also during the interview with Closer, Linda Ronstadt reveals she thinks she was about 2-years-old when she knew she was going to sing. “I always sang. I loved it. But I guess I just didn’t know I was going be famous or a star or anything like that.”

Linda Ronstadt also admits that doesn’t know what she would do if she wasn’t a singer. “I like to read, but I hated school. I probably would have become a music teacher or something like that,” the singer explains. She then says if she could go back and give her younger self advice, it would be to master an instrument, either guitar or piano, early on. 

“I also would have seen a lot more time learning traditional music,” Linda states. “I knew, but I didn’t know it well enough to play it professionally.”

Linda discusses how her adopted children, Mary and Carlos, have followed her into music by stating May can sing harmonies because she taught her how. Meanwhile, her son can pick up a guitar and learn it, but it’s not his “primary” focus. “My children both use music for their own enjoyment, which is what music is really for.”

In regards to her involvement with Los Cenzontles Cultural Arts Academy, which is located in California, Linda explains that it’s a group she has been working with the organization for almost 30 years. The organization notably teaches 30 kids a week how to play musical instruments, how to dance traditional Mexican dances, as well as teach how to sing. Linda also describes the area around the Academy as “very dicey” and it gives the kids a place to go after school. 

“Children need real art in their lives – not the stuff you watch on television. Children need to be instructed in it so they can process their feelings,” Linda adds.