Tool's Maynard James Keenan Had COVID-19 a Second Time

"I could barely put two words together without going into a coughing fit"

Photo: Carrie Musgrave

BY Calum SlingerlandPublished Feb 4, 2021

In October, Maynard James Keenan revealed he caught COVID-19 in late February of last year, and the Tool singer has now shared that he contracted the virus a second time before 2020 was out.

Speaking with George Stroumboulopoulos for Apple Music, Keenan shared that his second bout with coronavirus was "Ugly, ugly. Couldn't breathe," recalling how he became reinfected mid-November "and ended up in the ER on December 1."

"I could barely put two words together without going into a coughing fit that, you know? It ended up kind of also progressing into pneumonia," he continued. "So, if I stayed in the hospital, they said, 'Okay, we can keep you here, but you're fighting 12 other people for a bed and a ventilator we don't have, so what do you want to do?' I'm like, 'Well, I need to breathe and I need to sleep.' So, you're just treating symptoms at that point. There's nothing you can do other than treat the symptom, so for a real cough medicine, not the crap over-the-counter and then like an inhaler, and some antibiotics to fight the pneumonia and strap the fuck in."

Unlike Grimes, it appears there is no enjoyment of the "the Dayquil Fever Dream" for Keenan. In October, he shared how he was "still dealing with the residual effects" of his first viral exposure.

"I kind of didn't want to run around screaming it," Keenan said at the time. "But it's real. And there's after-effects. I had to go through some major medications to undo the residual effects. Still coughing. There's still lung damage."

He continued: "Every other day, I have these coughing fits because my lungs are still damaged at the tips. And I just got over the inflammation that was going on with my wrist and hands. I had an autoimmune attack on my system in the form of rheumatoid arthritis. Basically, from what I understand, it attacks weird spots and it's random."

Keenan also spoke to Stroumboulopoulos about Existential Reckoning, which he released with Puscifer last year. You can hear their complete interview here.

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