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Famous Musicians with Hearing Problems

You may think you know a lot about your favorite musicians, but one of the last things you might guess is that they have hearing problems. Occupational hazards come with any job and hearing loss is likely high on the list for musicians who frequently play loud music. But not all of them developed it by cranking it just a bit too loud, some of them were born that way, baby.

Musical who’s who of hearing loss

While it may seem implausible that a musician could make music—or good music, anyway—with hearing loss, you may be surprised at just how many famous musicians have problems with hearing loss.

Ludwig von Beethoven

One of the world’s most famous composers was deaf. What? While the cause is not known, Beethoven began to lose his hearing at age 26 and by age 46, he was completely deaf.

Ozzy Osbourne

Perhaps it should come as no surprise that heavy metal isn’t easy on the ears and Ozzy has the tinnitus to prove it.

Barbra Streisand

Ms. Streisand’s hearing loss was not due to loud music, rather her tinnitus came on at age nine, which is why she is a proponent of wearing ear protection when listening to loud music.

Brian Wilson

This famous Beach Boy and what some call a musical genius has been partially deaf in his right ear for most of his life. He remained very protective of what was left of his hearing, a factor that led to his decision to stop playing concerts in the mid-60s.

Eric Clapton

This legendary guitarist played just a few too many loud concerts, which has led to tinnitus and hearing loss.

Pete Townsend

Songwriter and guitarist for The Who has hearing loss and tinnitus in both ears from—guess what—playing loud concerts. But he isn’t suffering in silence, he initiated a non-profit hearing advocacy group called Hearing Education and Awareness for Rockers (H.E.A.R).

Listen up

Listening to music should be enjoyable and not detrimental to your hearing. To avoid overexposure, limit your time using headphones, take breaks from loud noise, and lower the volume of your audio devices.

Contact Chears Audiology

If you’ve cranked the stereo up to 11 just a few too many times and think that you may be experiencing tinnitus or other hearing problems, contact Chears Audiology to schedule an appointment.

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