Billy Connolly was forced to explain he has Parkinson’s disease in The Great American Trail after a bagpipe player noticed his hands shaking.

Luckily, the beloved comedian managed to laugh off the awkward moment.

Billy revealed his prognosis in 2013, explaining that he had also been diagnosed with prostate cancer on the same day.

The disease means part of the brain becomes damaged over the years, affecting memory, hearing and energy levels.

Billy Connolly
He was thrilled to play a tune on Hank Williams’ old guitar (Picture: ITV)

The star, whose new series shows him travelling around the US met the musician in New Jersey.

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After the bagpipe player gave Billy a mini-performance, he noted: ‘I can see your fingers going there,’ as he asked if he played.

‘No, I’ve got Parkinson’s,’ the 76-year-old replied, joking: ‘It’s second best to playing the pipes.’

Fans weren’t too impressed with the musician ‘putting his foot in it’, with some quoting the mishap on Twitter.

However, the star clearly wasn’t disheartened as he went on to play a tune on Hank Williams’ old guitar in an emotional moment.

‘It affected me a lot more deeply than I thought [it would],’ Billy admitted afterwards. ‘I’m scared, shaking.’

The Scottish comedian retired from stand-up last year as his health deteriorated, but he’s now heading on a trip across the US for his new ITV show.

Fans are already hooked, with some describing the series as ‘absolutely brilliant’ and Billy as ‘the best thing to come out of Scotland.’

No lies detected.

The first episode kicked off in New York during a tartan day parade, as he follows the migratory trail of Scots through the heart of America hundreds of years ago.

His journey takes him through to Plymouth, Massachusetts where pilgrims first arrived on US soil, before meeting a Native American tribe whose people and language was almost wiped out.

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Other stops along the road include Boston to meet a group of nuns, and the graveside of Scot, Uncle Sam, who adorned the army recruitment posters.

Billy Connolly’s Great American Trail continues on ITV Thursday at 9pm.

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