By Alan Gionet

DENVER (CBS4)– “Thank you for your shout out this morning, it lifted my soul,” David Booker wrote in an email.

He has another gig tonight. He’s not likely to miss it. Even with another round of radiation scheduled for Monday, hopefully his last, you can bet he’ll be playing El Chapultepec Monday night as he has been for eight years.

capture david booker 1 Cancer Can’t Keep Blues Player From Shows

(credit: David Booker)

“I’ve been gigging right through my treatment,” said David. “The incentive is to keep playing and keep fighting.”

David’s been doing dozens of shows while undergoing cancer treatment. Sometimes it means a nap in the afternoon, but he still draws fans at night.

For David, it was prostate cancer in the middle of this year.

david booker with sonny boy williamson 1964 Cancer Can’t Keep Blues Player From Shows

David Booker with Sonny Boy Williamson (credit: David Booker)

“Something didn’t feel right,” during a bathroom visit, so he checked it out.

When a doctor told him it was cancer, “I just took a deep breath,” said David.

He’s had a Lupron injection which is a hormone treatment that threw him off. But the radiation seems to be doing the job.

“I think cancer can sense your body’s in bad shape,” cautioned David.

Getting ahead of it and staying ahead of it have knocked him down, but not out.

“I’m feeling more fatigued.”

“He’s just one of the great treasures when it comes to playing the blues in Colorado,” said friend and fellow player Chris Daniels.

“He’s a phenomenal guitar player, he’s a very emotional singer,” said Daniels. “He’s also a great leader. That’s a real skill and that’s not an easy thing to do.”

david booker Cancer Can’t Keep Blues Player From Shows

(credit: David Booker)

Booker led The Captain and the Red Hot Flames for years as well as The Alligators. He carries to British accent of his upbringing in Manchester in The United Kingdom.

After coming to Denver in 1982, he picked up a job as a disc jockey at long-gone KJJZ. He would announce they’d be playing a club on Broadway.

“Next thing I knew the place was packed and there was an agent and he started booking gigs.”

Booker drew crowds looking for pure music.

capture david booker family photo Cancer Can’t Keep Blues Player From Shows

David Booker with his girls Athena, Violet and Jasmine. (credit: David Booker)

David has more than his gigs going on. He has his girls. Athena is 16, Jasmine 14 and Violet is 9.

“Oh they’re great kids,” said David.

Athena has done choir, Jasmine dabbled in violin.

“She wants to be a rapper and leaps all about the house,” said David.

david booker hospital Cancer Can’t Keep Blues Player From Shows

(credit: David Booker)

In the midst of cancer, he still finds some humor and the style that made him loved around Denver.

“He’s always been true blue when it comes to the blues,” said Daniels.

Daniels himself is a leukemia survivor. He understands David’s fight.

booker music Cancer Can’t Keep Blues Player From Shows

(credit: David Booker)

“Cancer doesn’t define you, if you can make it through the battle it’s a launching pad for getting the most out of life that you possibly can.”

He will join in a benefit for David Thursday night, Nov. 30 at 7 p.m. at the Mercury Cafe. Tickets are $25.

There’s more information about the benefit at the Mercury Thursday in David’s GoFundMe Page:  https://www.gofundme.com/musician-david-booker-fights-cancer

Alan Gionet is telling stories of people dealing with cancer during No Shave November. He’s also raising money to fight it: https://no-shave.org/member/agionet

Alan Gionet is anchor of CBS4 This Morning and reports on a wide variety of issues and “Good Question” stories. He started at CBS4 in 1994. Follow Alan on Twitter @AlanGTV or on Facebook.

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