TF Archives

Erasure Star: HIV Isn't AIDS

Author: Jonty Skrufff
Saturday, December 18, 2004
Andy Bell from electro-pop duo Erasure spoke out about being HIV positive on his website this week, and pointed out "being H.I.V. does not mean that you have AIDS.'

"My life expectancy should be the same as anyone else's' so there is no need to panic," he said. "There is still so much hysteria & ignorance surrounding H.I.V and AIDS lets just get on with life i.e. making music, doing a live tour & generally having a good time."

Andy raised the issue after a British tabloid picked up on comments he made about his infection in a series of international interviews last week, during which he also discussed his HIV status with Skrufff. The topic arose after the 40-something singer revealed he's recently had both hips replaced, after serious problems with his bones.

"I discovered I was HIV positive in 1998, which I found out through having pneumonia in Spain. They gave me a drug at the time and the doctors said that my hip problems could have been a side effect from this drug; it works out time-wise," said Andy.

"But the surgeon told me they tested the bone after they sawed it off and discovered it wasn't that, because the bone wasn't porous enough," he continued.

"I said, "Could it be coke (cocaine) or could it be doing the can-can in high heeled shoes-' And they said "you're giving us extreme examples of everything' (chuckling). But they said no, it couldn't have been any of those things. There's no history of hip problems in my family either except my sister's just had her knees done and she's younger than me. So maybe it's something in the water."

Andy also revealed he's now finally quit cocaine after joining Narcotics Anonymous and added that he's been particularly inspired to regain his confidence after undergoing re-birthing.

"From the re-birthing experience I understood that I'd always wanted to belong in groups; I wanted be a gay man, I wanted to be a drug addict and I wanted to be HIV positive," he said. "I became all of those things, though I finally decided that what mattered was me- I finally learned how to be myself."