Andy Taylor – best known as the former guitarist of Duran Duran, who played with the band on-and-off between 1980 and 2001 – has opened up about his ongoing battle with stage 4 metastatic prostate cancer.
Taylor was diagnosed with his condition four-years ago and although he was set to reunite with Duran Duran last year when they were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, a setback with his treatment forced him to miss the occasion.
Speaking with 5 News this week, Taylor explained that he’d learned of his cancer shortly after he’d noticed “what you would think was aa arthritic sort of pain” during a jog. “I never thought more of it than that,” he said of the first symptoms, assuming the pain was due to his age, before he’d begun noticing other symptoms – such as “what felt like tumours” on his neck.
He continued: “I went and had a biopsy done, and I came back for the results – and no-one could be prepared for that mistake. And actually, the consultant was a little late, and he sat down and said, ‘I’m sorry, I’m so sorry’ – and I thought he was apologising because he was late. And he said, ‘It’s prostate [cancer],’ and I’m like, ‘Yeah, well, my dad had that. I understand.’ He said, ‘But it’s stage 4, metastatic… which is a death sentence.’”
On going public with his diagnosis, Taylor said: “I did a lot of preparation [for the Duran Duran reunion] with those those fabulous people.” He went on to say “you lose all of your testosterone in treatment… I bet most men don’t have a clue. ”
“So because I had to miss the ceremony, I wrote a letter to the band, just explaining the situation, and they very graciously read that out before the ceremony. And that’s when it went public.”
Taylor went on to note “the amount of love and support and offers of help” he’d received from Duran Duran’s fanbase, before imploring them to get tested for prostate cancer.
As for how Taylor handled his diagnosis mentally, the artist said he “thought about getting the most out of life”, explaining that when he first heard the news, he wasn’t able to access the kind of treatments he is now. He continued: “ I just thought, ‘I’m gonna live life.’”
“I’ve made three albums since then. I went on the road with some friends of mine and played some shows, which were fantastic. And when the pandemic was over, we had a huge 61st birthday party, because I missed my 60th. I often say to people, ‘Every minute’s like an hour, every day’s like a week.’ You know, you really want to get the most out of life.”
Have a look at the full interview below:
Meanwhile, Duran Duran are gearing up to embark on a five-date arena tour of the UK and Ireland at the end of April. They’ll perform (without Taylor) in Manchester, London, Leeds, Birmingham and Dublin – see more details on the tour here.