Neil Diamond gives a surprise performance for firefighters battling wildfire

Neil Diamond made a surprise return six months after announcing he was retiring from performing live.

The 77-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer put on a small private concert for Colorado firefighters trying to put out a massive wildfire.

A video posted on the Facebook page called Lake Christine Fire shows the rock star singing Sweet Caroline while playing the guitar.

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Currently residing in Basalt, Colorado, Diamond visited the Incident Command Post with his wife, Katie McNeill.

Together, they thanked the firefighters for their efforts in containing the Lake Christine Fire. The devastating blaze began on July 3, 2018.

Diamond led firefighters in a sing along to Sweet Caroline, one of his most popular hits.

The video posted on Facebook shows the men and women who worked to contain the fire sitting in awe as they watch Diamond strum the acoustic guitar.

Diamond had lived in the area for more than 20 years so he felt strongly for the dedication shown by the firefighters to combat the raging flames.

The video has been viewed more than 400,000 times. It has also been shared 7,000 times.

Earlier this year, Diamond announced that he was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease, a progressive, degenerative disease that affects nervous system function.

He cited this as the reason he was resigning from concert touring.

He was praised by his fans for helping boost the firefighters' morale.

"This guy is such a class act and so full of 'heart'. Wonderful to see and hear him after his diagnosis," commented Judith Martin.

"So awesome! Thanks to all the firefighters in California, Colorado and other states waging a war on fire," wrote Shirley Pargament.

Linda Shrader McCulloch wrote: "That just goes to show you what a very thoughtful, considerate and concerned person Neil is."

Diamond is one of the best-selling musicians of all time, having sold more than 100 million records worldwide.