Nick Cave Opens Up About Grieving His Sons And How Fans Helped: ‘The Care From The Audience Saved Me’

In May, news broke that Nick Cave’s son Jethro passed away at age 31. This followed the tragic 2015 death of Cave’s son Arthur. Fans, earlier this year, did their best to support Cave with condolences through letters, which Cave thanked them for, writing that they were “a great source of comfort.”

Cave opened up in a new interview with The New York Times about the role his fans’ support plays in his grief, especially at live concerts. “When Arthur died, I was thrust into the darkest place imaginable, where it was almost impossible to be able to see outside of despair,” he said. “Susie and I somehow managed to pull ourselves out of that, and — I know this sounds corny — that did have something to do with the response I started to get from people who kept writing to me and saying, mostly, This happened to me, and this is what’s happening to you, and this is what can happen. This was extremely affecting for me.”

He added, “The concerts that I did following that, too — the care from the audience saved me. I was helped hugely by my audience, and when I play now, I feel like that’s giving something back. What I’m doing artistically is entirely repaying a debt. It’s — my other son has died. It’s difficult to talk about, but the concerts themselves and this act of mutual support saves me. People say, How can you go on tour? But for me it’s the other way around. How could I not?”