Bono is “at peace” with the fact he has a half-brother he only found out about as an adult.
The U2 frontman – whose real name is Paul Hewson – was stunned to learn in the year 2000 that his father Bob had had a child with a woman who he now sees as “part of the family” and he can understand that part of the reason he had a difficult relationship with his dad growing up was his parent was carrying so much emotional conflict.
Speaking on ‘Desert Island Discs’, Bono – whose mother Iris died when he was 14 – said: “I do have another brother whom I love and adore that I didn’t know I had, or maybe I did.
“My father was obviously going through a lot but partly his head was elsewhere because his heart was elsewhere.
‘”So I think that was part of the problem I was picking up as a kid.
“It’s a very close family and I could tell that my father had a deep friendship with this gorgeous woman who is part of the family and then they had a child and this was all kept a secret.
“I asked him (his father) did he love my mother and he , ‘Yes’ and I asked him how could this happen and he said, “it can,” and that he was trying to put it right, trying to do the right thing.
“He wasn’t apologising, he was just stating these are the facts. I’m at peace with it.”
Elsewhere in the interview, the 62-year-old singer, whose dad died in 2001, addressed accusations of hypocrisy because of his band’s controversial overseas tax arrangements, which are viewed as at odds with the ‘One’ hitmaker’s activism and anti-poverty campaigning.
He said: “I think at the root of this [criticism] is a false idea that if you’re tough-minded in your activism you somehow have to be soft headed in your business.”
Asked how he justifies the tax set up, he said: “It is actually the fiduciary duty of a public company to control costs. This is a bit of a gotcha situation for U2.
“There’s a lot of reasons not to like our band. This is not one of them. We pay a lot of tax, and we are very proud to pay tax.”