U2 frontman Bono’s memoir, Surrender: 40 Songs, One Story, was released recently. He discussed his friendship with INXS singer Michael Hutchence and his wife Paula Yates has been deemed ‘absolutely absurd’ by a friend of the tragic couple.
Bono wrote that he and wife Ali were asked to be godparents to Hutchence and Yates’s first and only child, Tiger Lily. But, he says, the spiralling and well-documented recreational drug use of the Australian singer and his TV presenter wife made it an impossible proposition for the Hewsons.
Bono opens up on the matter
However, Yates’s friend and former right-hand woman Gerry Agar-Fennell told Extra.ie this week that the real reason the invitation was rejected was that Bono was still close friends with Yates’s ex-husband, Bob Geldof.
In his memoir, Bono writes:
”It should have been the greatest honour when Michael and Paula called on my wife Ali and me to ask us to be godparents to Tiger Lily. But we were wigged out. They were in freefall, spiralling down the vortex of recreational drug use that had become hard work for everyone. We nervously tried to explain that while they were in the condition they were in, we’d rather not play the role of best friends. We’d rather be best friends, and that meant being truthful.”
Agar-Fennell, who quit as Yates’s publicist before she died of an overdose in 2000, told Extra.ie this week: ‘Bono’s trying to come across as squeaky-clean in his book – it’s so awful and wrong, it’s absolutely absurd.
”He says he grew uncomfortable around them because of their drug use. But I never saw that.”
She claims she was in the house when Hutchence made the call to ask Bono to be godfather, and the U2 star had said: ”Look, I’ve got this friendship with Bob, it’d tear it up if I accepted, it isn’t gonna work. I’m sorry mate.”
She added that, just a couple of weeks after Bono turned down the godfather offer, he was happy to holiday with the couple in the south of France. ‘They were thick as thieves,’ she said.
Agar-Fennell also claims the couple’s friends dismissed her concerns about Yates and Hutchence’s continuous drug use.
”I was alone in trying to help them,” she said. ”I went to all their friends to ask for help, including Bono. But they were all too busy partying, saying they loved each other.”
Her account comes a few weeks ahead of the 25th anniversary of the INXS singer’s death, aged 37. He was found hanged in a Sydney hotel room in what was declared a suicide. Three years’ later, Paula Yates died of a heroin overdose in London, aged 41. Their daughter Tiger Lily – now 26 and living out of the spotlight – was taken into the foster custody of Bob Geldof, to live with her three half-sisters.