Dexter Roberts Reveals Why He Left American Idol Live

When Dexter Roberts mysteriously left the American Idol Live tour at the end of June, without a word, except for a cryptic statement from tour producers that the Alabama native had been let out of his contract by mutual agreement, speculation ran rampant.

Now, Dexter posts a message of explanation to his Facebook. He really IS sick as Jessica Meuse tweeted to fans asking about his absence. The singer has been diagnosed with Rocky Mountain Spotted Tick Fever. It took awhile to diagnose, perhaps that’s why Dexter waited to address the issue with his fans:

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all my fans, friends and family for all their prayers, patience and support through my illness. After months of hospital and doctor visits, I finally have a diagnosis. I have Rocky Mountain Spotted Tick Fever, with symptoms of fever, rash, headache, abdominal issues, shortness of breath and muscle pain.

After the American Idol finale show in May, I went on a turkey hunt in Kentucky. I found several ticks on me throughout the 4 day hunt, but that is nothing unusual for turkey hunting. Shortly after the American Idol tour started, I started having serve headaches, chest pains and muscle weakness on my left side, along with tremendous abdominal issues and shortness of breath. The medical facilities, while on tour, were unable to make a diagnosis. After my return home from the tour I found myself, once again, back at a hospital emergency room, where the doctor discovered a rash in my head from the tick bite. Day before yesterday, the blood work confirmed I have Rocky Mountain Spotted Tick Fever. I started medication yesterday.

Please continue to pray for my full recovery. I know God is in control of my life, and his path will be made clear for my music career. He is my rock and salivation, and I trusting in him.

Damn. What a tough break! Take care of yourself Dexter, and get well soon.

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  • LeahKittyS

    Well, at least now we finally know the truth. Thanks for clarifying. But I just looked up “Rocky Mountain spotted fever” online, and what I read was kind of scary. Get well soon, Dexter! I don’t want to lose an American Idol! Everybody pray to whomever you believe in, please!

  • lkingcorn

    My own son was diagnosed with RMSF years ago. Emergency doctors couldn’t diagnose and kept him quarantined until,his personal dermotogolist diagnosed as he had seen it from where he grew up. My son had bought a FFA steer from out of state. It took a couple of weeks treatment on meds, but he was fine afterwards. I don’t recall it being that dire once treatment began. That said Alex May have put off getting treated due to Idol schedule.

  • Eilonwy_has_an_emu

    Poor guy! Massive unexplained symptoms must have been terrifying. I hope he gets completely well, now that he’s finally being treated.

    So presumably TPTB were being all “let’s pretend nothing is happening” and then “let’s release a statement that says the legal minimum” because either they thought his illness might have been caused by something on tour or they’re just incompetent. Meh.

  • Amy Beth

    Is this similar to Lyme disease?

    Still doesn’t explain the brusqueness of the original statement. They allowed people to speculate that Dexter just up and quit. They did him quite a disservice.

  • stef

    Good that he knows what is going on and can be treated appropriately.

    But still very weird (very) to me that neither he nor the tour made even the briefest / vaguest of statements when he was missing shows and eventually off tour altogether. And the tour kept advertising the AI top 10 as if an imaginary 10th performer was on the bus with the “top 6 + 3” who were actually going on stage.

    The unusual handling of it all, or lack of handling, still leads me to wonder if there was some additional situation going on vs. solely a medical concern.

  • elliegrll

    I still don’t think that this is the case. A lot of people don’t want complete strangers to know that they are sick, or for those people to throw out things that are not true.

  • Karen C

    Even if he didn’t want people to know he was sick, they could have said he was leaving due to personal reasons.

  • Karen C

    It’s always a possibility there was more to it. If there were other issues it might have made the decision to leave easier than it would have if everything else was ok.

  • Karen C

    I’m glad that they found out what is wrong, and that it is treatable. It’s an awful thing to happen to someone if they really wanted to be on the tour, because it’s really a unique opportunity.

  • HappyDaisy_2

    Poor guy. Sorry that it took so long to get an accurate diagnosis, sounds awful. Wish Dexter a speedy and full recovery.

    Any chance that there is tension between him and the Idol franchise over how his illness was handled while on tour? Is there a tour doctor?

  • Lexie O’Neill

    Get well soon, Dexter, and God Bless.

  • ptslittlecomment

    Many of his friends and family have said he was I’ll on facebook over all these weeks. I agree Idol did him a disservice in not saying he was ill.

  • Sue tiedemann

    I really feel bad for Dexter. Hope he gets a full recovery.

  • Sassycatz

    It’s too bad about all this, not only in terms of his health but in terms of the opportunities he’s missing. What I find ironic is that, when we first learned about Dexter’s absence from the tour, we also learned that he was going to be making an appearance at a 3 day World Deer Expo. Even though he isn’t suffering from lyme disease which is transmitted by ticks that feed on deer, the fact that the guy got done in by ticks and, while being diagnosed, decides to attend a Deer Expo…. Lord. You can’t make this stuff up.

  • Eilonwy_has_an_emu

    I think he should write an angsty country ballad about the entire juxtaposition. That’s not snark — writing angsty songs about one’s unhappy experiences is what musicians do, and it’d cover a lot of bro country topics while having contrasting themes (plus an obvious publicity hook). It could be good art, if he’s up for it.

  • Amy Beth

    Working title: Ticked Off

  • Karen C

    I’m sure it’s a possibility. Maybe they still wanted him to continue?

  • Montavilla

    Good luck to you, Dexter! I’m sending you good thoughts!

  • JustJam

    Those ticks are a pain the butt. Hope he’s doing well now. On the bright side, at least he was able to be part of the tour for sometime so he didn’t miss out on it completely

  • fuzzywuzzy

    RMSF can be very serious and life-threatening:

  • fuzzywuzzy

    Since treatment within the first few days of having symptoms of RMSF appears to be very important, I suspect that TPTB’s minimal statement may have factored in potential legal consequences.

  • Kariann Hart

    Now knowing what he’s dealing with, here’s hoping for a quick and complete recovery.

  • WestiesRule

    This is worse than Lyme Disease. Good luck to him.

  • CanadianLady

    Sure hope he’s okay. This must have a terrible experience for him.

    It reminds me of when my youngest son was in grade 5 and I kept having to go pick him up because of stomach aches. He also had no energy. Just laid around when he was at home.

    But the doctor couldn’t find anything. Did a bunch of noninvasive tests.

    Teachers were sure it was him not wanting to be at the school.

    I kept taking him to the doctor. Finally they found a parasite. Probably from water. Two days on penicillin and he was his normal high-energy self.

    Oh yeah, we took him out of that school due to the teachers’ patronizing attitude. :0

  • edricstorm2

    I don’t think he meant “salivation” lol

  • dd999

    So sorry to hear of Dexter’s illness. Wishing him a speedy recovery!!!