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Dr. Kantor heals the rock stars

When it comes to ears (Kiss), nose (Cher) and throat (Nicks), Dr. Ed Kantor is No. 1 in rock

Dr. Edward Kantor is in his Beverly Hills office tending to Danny Kaye. A phone rings, and it is another patient — Barbra Streisand. “I thought I’d have some fun with her,” recalls the 49-year-old ear, nose and throat specialist. “I hand the phone to Danny, who does his Prussian doctor shtick: ‘This is Dr. Von so-and-so. I just got your tests back, and I’m afraid you’re suffering from Von Recklinghausen’s disease.’ Meantime I can hear Barbra screaming, ‘I don’t know who this is!’ Finally Danny confesses. Barbra comes in 15 minutes later. They embrace and the waiting room goes wild!”

That’s throat biz for Ed Kantor, who’s devoted the last 18 years to preserving the priceless pipes of Garland, Sinatra, Liz, the Duke, the Stewarts (Jimmy and Rod), Sly, Mary Tyler Moore and so on. One of his latest saves was Fleetwood Mac’s Stevie Nicks, for whom he prescribed two weeks of silence because her vocal cords had become “horribly swollen” from overuse. “When I went to his office, so sick,” says Stevie, “and saw him standing there with his silver hair, I said, ‘Oh thank the Lord.’ After treatment I felt a million times better.”

“It’s a parade all the time,” beams the ebullient Kantor, who still operates four mornings a week at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and the L.A. New Hospital, where he is head of ETN. This frenetic schedule (17,000 patients since 1960) makes it difficult even for a celeb to get in. “Mario Lanza must have died,” bellowed Don Rickles one day in mock anger. “That’s how I got an appointment!”

So much for levity in the office. Kantor neither drinks nor smokes and is stern with his patients on their habits. Mac Davis notes that he’ll prescribe only one sleeping pill. Alcohol, Kantor tells singers, swells the delicate mucous membrane over the vocal cords. Marijuana dries and irritates them, and cocaine can perforate the septum. “Just the other day,” chirps Cher, “he looked up my nose and said, `You’re such a good girl. You don’t do any drugs.’ ” Kantor ministered to Elvis Presley for 15 years and reports, “Despite popular opinion, Elvis’s cords were not shot to hell. They were in good shape, no nodes whatsoever.” Another concern of Kantor’s with rock artists is hearing. He wore (and recommends) earplugs at a Kiss concert where he treated singer Paul Stanley.

Kantor developed his awe over the human voice as the only son of a Cleveland cantor (“God forbid if my father became hoarse on the High Holy Days”). Ed took his M.D. at the University of Nebraska and served as chief surgeon for NATO forces in Iceland. A researcher too, he is currently using high-speed cinematography “to break down frame by frame the movement of the vocal cords to see why singers get into trouble.”

When he unwinds, it is not with any of his famous patients but rather with his lady since their divorces were finalized last year, Kathy Stuart, 40ish, a former Miss New Hampshire and commercials actress. They met when he removed her tonsils. Currently Ed and the older of his two daughters, Debbie, 18, spend most of their time at Kathy’s 17-room house in Holmby Hills.

Is Kantor a frustrated performer himself? Yes and no. He hasn’t sung in public, he says, since his bar mitzvah. But he feels like he’s onstage every day. “Should I err in taking a node off a Linda Ronstadt,” he observes, “the notoriety could destroy me.” Not that he’s losing his confidence. “Anybody who performs well knows the feeling, onstage or in surgery. When you can cut circles around the next fellow, when you know you were good, you don’t have to hear any applause when you walk out of that operating room.”

Rich Wiseman / People (Vol. 10 Issue 8, p83. 1p.) / August 21, 1978 


LIVE IN CONCERT (2023-2024)

Billy Joel and Stevie NicksStevie Nicks

FEB 10, 2024
Mark G Etess Arena
Atlantic City, NJ

FEB 14, 2024
UBS Arena
Belmont Park, NY

FEB 17, 2024
CFG Bank Arena
Baltimore, MD

FEB 21, 2024
Bon Secours Wellness Arena
Greenville, SC

FEB 24, 2024
Hard Rock Live
Hollywood, FL

FEB 28, 2024
Smoothie King Center
New Orleans, LA

MAR 3, 2024
CHI Health Center
Omaha, NE

MAR 6, 2024
Simmons Bank Arena
North Little Rock, AR

MAR 9, 2024
AT&T Stadium
Arlington, TX
Billy Joel

MAY 3, 2024 – MAY 5, 2024
Lovin’ Life Fest
Charlotte, NC

MAY 7, 2024
Enterprise Center
St Louis, MO

MAY 10, 2024
WinStar World Casino & Resort
Thackerville, OK

MAY 14, 2024
Bridgestone Arena
Nashville, TN

MAY 18, 2024
Frost Bank Center
San Antonio, TX

MAY 21, 2024
Yaamava’ Resort & Casino – Yaamava’ Theater
Highland, CA

MAY 24, 2024
BottleRock Napa Valley
Napa, CA

MAY 27, 2024
Delta Center
Salt Lake City, UT

MAY 30, 2024
Ball Arena
Denver, CO

Gainbridge Fieldhouse
Indianapolis, IN

JUN 9 
Mohegan Sun Casino
Uncasville, CT

JUN 12
MVP Arena
Albany, NY

JUN 15 
Hersheypark Stadium
Hershey, PA

JUN 18
Van Andel Arena
Grand Rapids, MI

JUN 21, 2024
Soldier Field
Chicago, IL

JUL 12, 2024
BST Hyde Park
London, England

Two Icons One Night presented by Live Nation
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Previous 2023 dates

March 10, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Los Angeles, CA
SoFi Stadium

March 15, 2023
Seattle, WA
Climate Pledge Arena

March 18, 2023
Las Vegas, NV
T-Mobile Arena

May 12, 2023
Raleigh, NC
PNC Arena

May 16, 2023
Knoxville, TN
Thompson-Boling Arena

May 19, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Nashville, TN
Nissan Stadium

May 22, 2023
Atlanta, GA
State Farm Arena

May 25, 2023
Orlando, FL
Amway Center

June 16, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Philadelphia, PA
Lincoln Financial Field

June 20, 2023
Toronto, ON (Canada)
Scotiabank Arena

June 23, 2023
Chicago, IL
United Center

June 27, 2023
Louisville, KY
KFC Yum! Center

August 5, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Columbus, OH
Ohio Stadium

August 8, 2023
Milwaukee, WI
Fiserv Forum

August 12, 2023
Houston, TX
Toyota Center

August 15, 2023
Austin, TX
Moody Center

August 19, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Kansas City, MO
Arrowhead Stadium

September 23, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Foxborough, MA
Gillette Stadium

September 27, 2023
Pittsburgh, PA
PPG Paints Arena

October 1, 2023
New York, NY
Madison Square Garden

October 4, 2023
Buffalo, NY
KeyBank Center

October 7, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Baltimore, MD 
M&T Bank Stadium

October 28, 2023
Memphis, TN
FedEx Forum

November 1, 2023
Savannah, GA
Enmarket Arena

November 4, 2023
Allentown, PA
PPL Center

November 7, 2023
Detroit, MI
Little Caesars Arena

November 10, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Minneapolis, MN
U.S. Bank Stadium

November 29, 2023
San Diego, CA
Viejas Arena

December 2, 2023
Inglewood, CA
The Kia Forum

December 5, 2023
Palm Desert, CA
Acisure Arena

December  8, 2023 – BILLY JOEL
Phoenix, AZ
Chase Field

December 12, 2023
Sacramento, CA
Golden 1 Center

December 15, 2023
San Francisco, CA
Chase Center

2022 Tour

Stevie Nicks

Jazz Aspen Snowmass
Snowmass, CO
Labor Day 2022

Ravinia Festival
Highland Park, IL
September 8, 2022
September 10, 2022

Pine Knob Music Theatre
Clarkston, MI
September 13, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Sea Hear Now Festival
Asbury, NJ
September 17, 2022

Xfinity Center
Mansfield, MA
September 19, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Maine Savings Amphitheatre
Bangor, ME
September 22, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Sound on Sound Festival
Bridgeport, CT
September 24-25, 2022

Ohana Festival
Dana Point, CA
September 30, 2022

Hollywood Bowl
Los Angeles, CA
October 3, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Ak-Chin Pavilion

Phoenix, AZ
October 6, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

The Woodlands, TX
October 9, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Ameris Bank Amphitheatre
Alpharetta, GA
October 12, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Ascend Amphitheater
Nashville, TN
October 16, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Credit One Stadium
Charleston, SC
October 19, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

PNC Music Pavilion
Charlotte, NC
October 22, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre
Tampa, FL
October 25, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre
West Palm Beach, FL
October 28, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Orion Amphitheatre
Huntsville, AL
October 31, 2022


Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
The Woodlands, TX
November 2, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton

Ak-Chin Pavilion
Phoenix, AZ
November 5, 2022
w/ Vanessa Carlton