U2's Adam Clayton Says Pete Townshend and Eric Clapton Helped Him Get Sober

"In some ways that devastating disease is what drove me towards this wonderful life I now have."
U2's Adam Clayton Says Pete Townshend and Eric Clapton Helped Him Get Sober
U2 are currently celebrating 30 years of The Joshua Tree with a massive anniversary tour. The road to their longevity as a band hasn't always an easy one, with bassist Adam Clayton recently opening up about his recovery from alcoholism.

Last night (June 26), Clayton was presented the Stevie Ray Vaughn Award by MusiCaresMAP Fund for his work with the addiction charity. "I'm an alcoholic, addict, but in some ways that devastating disease is what drove me towards this wonderful life I now have," he said. "It's just that I couldn't take my friend alcohol. At some point I had to leave it behind and claim my full potential."

Clayton revealed that Eric Clapton and the Who's Pete Townshend reached out to tell him to seek help. "He didn't sugarcoat it," Clayton said of the former. "He told me that I needed to change my life and that I wouldn't regret it." Clayton also said that he "didn't think you could be in a band and not drink. It is so much a part of our culture."

Of course, his bandmates in U2 were there to support him too. "We have a pact with each other. In our band, no one will be a casualty. We all come home, or none of us come home. No one will be left behind. Thank you for honouring that promise, and letting me be in your band," Clayton said.

"I was lucky because I had three friends who could see what was going on and who loved me enough to take up the slack of my failing. Bono, the Edge, and Larry (Mullen) truly supported me before and after I entered recovery, and I am unreservedly grateful for their friendship, understanding, and support."

Watch Clayton's speech in the player below.


Order the Joshua Tree 30th anniversary remaster on a variety of formats via Umusic.