Funk doesn’t die, but it does retire.

George Clinton, one of the original pioneers of funk music, has announced his plans to retire from touring with his Parliament-Funkdelic outfit. Clinton told Billboard that “[t]his has been a long time coming. Anyone who has been to the shows over the past couple of years has noticed that I’ve been out front less and less.”

Clinton turns 77 in July and recently underwent surgery to have a pacemaker fitted, although he has said that this wasn’t a factor in his decision to retire.

It’s likely that Parliament-Funkadelic will continue to tour without Clinton, he said in his statement to Billboard that “it’s never really been about me. It’s always been about the music and the band. That’s the real P-Funk legacy. They’ll still be funkin’ long after I stop.”

Clinton isn’t likely to step away fully just yet. He’s due to perform with Parliament-Funkadelic until May 2019 (including in Europe and the UK this summer) and has just released a brand new song under the Parliament name, ‘I’m Gon Make U Sick O’Me’. It’s the first Parliament release for over three decades, and is the first single from the forthcoming album Medicaid Fraud Dog. It’ll be the first album from Parliament since 1980’s Trombipulation

The single features lead vocals from Clinton, and members of his current P-Funk outfit. It also features Scarface and Mudbone Cooper, who both feature in the new trippy video released last week. The new Parliament album is due out shortly, in a Tweet Clinton said it would be out the 22nd – but didn’t give a month. Here’s hoping we don’t have to wait too long.

You can listen to our interview with Dr Funkenstein from 2015 here.