I have always found Bob Geldof an intriguing character. I could never quite fathom him out. Even now, I think the “real” Bob Geldof, if there is one, is only known to a few close family members and friends. He is a man of contrast, of many personalities, some of whom are constantly fighting each other. He is a man of self doubt and also at times an egotist. He is constantly questioning every decision he makes, is never satisfied and always thinking about the next step forward. He has a mind that works overtime and by his own admission, finds relaxation difficult. He must be very difficult to live with, work for, or argue with. Boring, he is NOT.
Having studied his background and early life, I have come to genuinely admire this man, who has endured a traumatic childhood and some real, very public tragedies in his life. It is a wonder really that he is still here, or did not end up in jail. He literally brought himself up from the age of 7, when his mother died and had almost full responsibility for rising, setting the fire, cooking breakfast and getting himself to school, doing his homework.(or not). He still needs to have that complete control over events in his life, and has a reputation as a bit of a control freak. His father was there, but as a travelling salesman, he only returned at weekends. Bob was left to his own devices and his two elder sisters were given responsibility for him, but they had there own lives to think about.
He has written publicly about the abuse he suffered, on a daily basis at school, and on a weekly basis at home. What scars would that leave in any child? It was a natural conclusion that he would become a rebel. He had a distant relationship with his father for many years. Fortunately they are now reconciled and are very close.
The years of drug taking in the Boomtown Rats cannot have helped his mental or physical state. Then he had to endure the very public death of his ex wife and was the subject of various quite cruel press speculations.
Bob has now successfully managed to turn his life around, bringing up 4 children, including his adopted daughter. His pent up anger, aggression and frustration is now directed to a more positive objective. I do believe he is genuine in his wish for a better world and he will die fighting for it.
I also love his solo music, which I think is very undervalued and under played.