Neil Diamond made a rare live appearance over the weekend when he sang “Sweet Caroline” at a Boston Red Sox game.
He was accompanied by actor Will Swenson, who’ll be playing the lead role in the upcoming Broadway show A Beautiful Noise: The Neil Diamond Musical. The crowd joined in enthusiastically at the trademark moments. You can watch the performance from Saturday's game below.
The Red Sox have played “Sweet Caroline” during every home game for 25 years, establishing a permanent connection with the singer. Diamond last sang it live at Fenway Park in 2013, during the team’s first home game since the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.
Diamond announced his immediate retirement from touring in 2018 after being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, leading to the cancellation of a series of planned concerts. “I have been so honored to bring my shows to the public for the past 50 years,” he said. “My sincerest apologies to everyone who purchased tickets and were planning to come to the upcoming shows.”
He added: “I plan to remain active in writing, recording and other projects for a long time to come. My thanks goes out to my loyal and devoted audiences around the world. You will always have my appreciation for your support and encouragement. This ride has been ‘so good, so good, so good’ thanks to you.”
Many of those who received refunds to Diamond shows donated the money to charity, leading to a message of thanks from the performer. A few months later he made a surprise one-off return when he performed for firefighters trying to contain a blaze in Colorado that had been burning for a month.