Duran Duran guitarist Andy Taylor was absent from the band’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Saturday due to complications of prostate cancer. Frontman Simon Le Bon read a letter to the audience from Taylor sharing the news.
“Just over 4-years ago I was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic prostate cancer. Many families have experienced the slow burn of this disease and of course we are no different,” Le Bon read on behalf of Taylor during the ceremony. “So I speak from the perspective of a family-man but with profound humility to the band, the greatest fans a group could have and this exceptional accolade.”
Taylor began his letter by paying tribute to the group’s humble roots, from their shared love of rock greats like David Bowie, Sex Pistols and CHIC, to developing their own style through synth technology.
“I loved going into the studio and recording our material; nobody else sounded like us,” the guitarist’s letter read. “We were ripe to absorb what was the art of analogue recording, but with some different kit, Nick’s artful obsession with synth technology was something I’d never seen before and I was introduced to layers.”
After sharing why the famed member could not attend the ceremony, Taylor shared that this current condition is “not immediately life-threatening,” though there is “no cure” for this type of cancer.
“Recently I was doing okay after some very sophisticated life-extending treatment, that was until a week or so ago when I suffered a setback,” he continued, “and despite the exceptional efforts of my team, I had to be honest in that both physically and mentally, I would be pushing my boundaries.”
He then underscored that his condition should not detract from the major success of the group, saying “We’ve had a privileged life, we were a bit naughty but really nice, a bit shirty but very well dressed, a bit full of ourselves, because we had a lot to give, but as I’ve said many times, when you feel that collective, instinctive, kindred spirit of creativity mixed with ambition, armed with an über cool bunch of fans, well what could possibly go wrong?”
“I’m truly sorry and massively disappointed I couldn’t make it,” he said, even noting that he bought a new guitar to mark the occasion.
He then thanked his band mates, noting their “durability” and calling them brothers. “I’m overjoyed at accepting this award,” he concluded. “I often doubted the day would come. I’m sure as hell glad I’m around to see the day.”
You can read the letter in its entirety here.