U2 bassist Adam Clayton gave an impassioned speech Monday, thanking his bandmates for their support while he was in treatment for alcoholism.
Clayton was receiving the Stevie Ray Vaughan Award from MusiCares, the charity run by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, for his support of the charity’s MAP Fund, which provides financial help and assistance for music industry workers in need of addiction recovery services.
“We have a pact with each other,” said Clayton. “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.”
“I’m an alcoholic, addict, but in some ways that devastating disease is what drove me towards this wonderful life I now have,” Clayton said of his addiction. “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.”
But it wasn’t just his U2 brothers who helped him out. Clayton says it was Eric Clapton who told him to seek help, and that The Who’s Pete Townshend came to visit him in rehab.
The speech was followed by a performance by U2 of some of their hits: “Stuck in a Moment You Can’t Get Out Of”, ”Vertigo”, and “I Will Follow”.
Arriving at the event, Clayton told reporters that the MAP Fund is especially important now given the opioid-addiction epidemic.
“MusiCares… really provides funding for a lot of people to look into those things and find help,” Clayton said.