Tim Commerford, the bassist for Rage Against the Machine, has announced he has prostate cancer.
Commerford, who toured with the group over the summer, says he performed while knowing his condition.
“Right before I was about to go on tour with Rage, I had my prostate removed, and I have prostate cancer,” he told Spin magazine.
“I’ve been someone that’s taken a lot of pride in being in shape and taking care of myself,” Commerford, 54, added. “But it’s something where either you’re either lucky or not.”
Commerford said he has tried to remain upbeat following the diagnosis.
“With everything that happens to me now, I wonder, am I feeling this way because I have cancer? Am I losing my hair because I have cancer? Whatever it is, it makes me wonder if it’s happening because I have cancer,” he said.
“I’ve been trying to find support groups, and it’s hard to find people and hard to talk about it. The suffering part of it, the physical suffering after the surgery, I’ve never felt pain quite like that,” he said.
Commerford said he didn’t intend to open up about his diagnosis, but he was moved to do so when he learned that Duran Duran guitarist Andy Taylor also has prostate cancer. Taylor missed the group’s recent induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, which Commerford watched on TV.
“I saw them on stage and wondered, where’s Andy Taylor and why do they have this other guy in here?! Then it was like, ‘Andy Taylor is suffering from stage 4 prostate cancer and is unable to make it,’” he said.
Commerford says his bandmates knew about his condition during the tour and he remains committed to staying as healthy as can be.
Commerford also said he sees the positive side of what he’s going through, hoping it may help others.
“I hope there’s one person who reads this and is like, 'I need to get checked out,' when they find out about it,” he said.