Sir Bob Geldof gets “assaulted” by grief over his daughter Peaches without warning.
The TV star was found dead at the home she shared with her husband Thomas Cohen and their two sons in Wrotham, Kent, in April at the age of 25. An inquest into her death has been adjourned, although it was announced that heroin was likely to have played a part in her passing.
Bob has given his first TV interview since losing his daughter and spoke in moving terms about how he is trying to come to terms with it.
“The default position for me as a person is, ‘Right, things have to be organized,’ and I go into organization mode and that distracts me. But like anybody else, these things assault you without warning,” he told British talk show host Lorraine Kelly. “You could be talking to someone, you could be walking down the road – and I’ve got to be careful ’cause this is still very raw – I’m walking down the street and suddenly, out of the blue, there’s an awareness of her and I buckle. I’ve got to be very careful because walking down the King’s Road there are paps everywhere, so I’ve got to duck off into a lane and blub for a while and then get on. I’d imagine that will be there for a long time. I mean, what else? “
Bob then took the opportunity to speak about how much hearing from members of the public has helped him. There was widespread shock when Peaches’ death was announced as, having been through some difficult periods in her younger years, she was widely thought to have got things back on track.
“If I may – and I don’t want this to be a blub fest and I don’t want to be emoting on television or getting too much into it – but you can imagine it, it is unimaginable at the same time, but let me just say we were overwhelmed by people writing to us in the kindest way,” he said. “The nice thing about that was that this young girl had made such an impact on her generation.”
The musician called the loss of Peaches “intolerable” and “very hard”, but said the only option he has is to get on with his life.
“Time doesn’t heal, it accommodates, it finds an available space in your brain and… allows you to see things in context,” he said.
Bob and his band The Boomtown Rats have been playing shows and have more coming, which is also helping the star. He finds being on stage “cathartic” and enjoys the feeling he gets when performances are over too, as it’s the one time when his head feels clear.
However, he finds singing certain songs difficult as he is grieving and has also been thinking about his former wife and Peaches’ late mother Paula Yates, who died of a heroin overdose in 2000.
“There’s a song… called Diamond Smiles, it was a very big hit. I was writing about a girl I read about in one of the papers, she was a socialite, she went to a posh party and she went upstairs and she hanged herself during the party. It was a tiny little piece and I think that somebody said, ‘Oh she was the brightest of diamonds,’ and I called the song Diamond Smiles,” he recalled. “If I really think about those words, and usually I’m in the zone of that song, it’s too bizarre; it’s too telling, whether it’s about Paula or about now, about Peaches.”
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