Musician Sivu says a rare condition called Ménière's is threatening his career

Sivu says his second album could be his last because of a disease which causes progressive lack of hearing.

The singer, whose real name is James Page, found out four years ago that he has Ménière's.

"I remember my first attack, I woke up and the room was just spinning, my ears were ringing, it was terrifying, it came from nowhere," he says.

"It's like the door was closing on something that I loved - I just felt completely helpless."

Sivu at Maida Vale
Image caption Sivu (pronounced see-vu) at Maida Vale before a session for Huw Stephens on Radio 1

It also causes dizziness, tinnitus (ringing sounds) and vomiting, which come in "episodes".

He's lost all hearing in his right ear and says everything "sounded like it was underwater".

The 29-year-old, who recently played the Crows Nest at Glastonbury, explains how sometimes the condition means he feels that can't move.

"No-one really knows too much about Ménière's because I'm not deaf, it comes and goes - it's the uncertainty that's the most horrible thing."

There is no cure for the disease and it's unknown how many are affected by it in the UK.

Sivu in session at Maida Vale for Huw Stephens' Radio 1 show
Image caption Sivu in session at Maida Vale for Huw Stephens' Radio 1 show

The worst episodes stop Sivu from playing music.

"I've done gigs before when I've sung pitches out of tune.

"When my hearing was really bad, I recorded myself singing I thought it was fine, but I listened to it weeks later when my hearing got better and it was completely out of tune. It was the worst thing ever."

He explains that it gets worse when he's run down.

"Exercise really helps. I run a lot which makes a massive difference and I try not to drink as much alcohol as I used to before."

Musician James Page aka Sivu

But he says it's not easy to stay healthy in his line of work.

"Touring is quite difficult because you don't sleep often, you drink a lot, eating bad food all the time, which is another obstacle in itself."

It's a disease that gets worse over time, but Sivu is determined to stay positive.

"Even getting to the point where an album is coming out is amazing.

"While I still can play music, I'm going to."

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