Bono Says He ‘Nearly Ceased to Be’ but Won’t Explain
U2 frontman Bono says he “nearly ceased to be” in a life-threatening experience, but said he wouldn’t divulge details of what had happened to him.
Speaking in a new interview with the Sunday Times, he referred to his 2015 cycling accident as a “brush with mortality” but said there had been another incident too. “It was pretty serious,” he said (via NME). “I’m all right now, but I very nearly wasn’t. I’ve had a lot of warnings. A fair few punches over the last years.”
Bono said "there were some serious whispers in the ear that maybe I should have taken notice of. The Edge says I look at my body as an inconvenience, and I do. I really love being alive and I’m quote good at being alive, meaning I like to get the best out of any day.”
The singer noted that the incident marked the “first time I put my shoulder to the door and it didn’t open.” “I feel God whispered to me, ‘Next time, try knocking at the door, or just try the handle. Don’t use your shoulder because you’ll break it,'” he explained.
In the liner notes to U2's most recent album, Songs of Experience, Bono said a “major moment” had inspired some of his lyrics. “I was on the receiving end of a shock to the system," he noted. "A shock that left me clinging on to my own life. It was an arresting experience. I won’t dwell in it or on it. I don’t want to name it.”
Last month, U2 were forced to abandon a concert in Germany after Bono suffered a “complete loss of voice,” thought to be the result of smoking being allowed in the venue. He later confirmed he’d suffered no long-term effects and thanked the audience for singing along to cover him while he struggled.