1 Robert Smith used to tell his record company he had a fear of flying – purely so he could cut down on his touring commitments. “For about three years, 1989 to 1992, I kept the pretence that I had this phobia,” recalls The Cure frontman. “We did two American tours sailing over on the QE2, which was very civilized.” Pic: Rex Features
2 The Cure first unveiled their iconic look of smeared lipstick and backcombed hair during a very dark period for the band, while touring 1982’s desolate ‘Pornography’ album. At the end of the tour bassist Simon Gallup (pictured second left) quit the band. Robert Smith recalls: “I was a monstrous person at that time.” Pic: Rex Features
3 The Cure’s 1989 album ‘Disintegration’ was initially dismissed by their US label Elektra as commercial suicide. Robert Smith recalls: “They thought I was being ‘wilfully obscure’, which was an actual quote from the letter.” The album went on to sell 2.7 million copies, making
4 The Cure’s song ‘Lullaby’ was inspired by the disturbing songs Robert Smith’s father would sing him when he could not sleep as a child: “He would always make them up. There was always a horrible ending. They would be something like ‘Sleep now, pretty baby – or you won’t wake up at all’
5 For a brief period in 1989, The Cure could lay claim to being the biggest band in the world. That year they played a sold-out show at Wembley Stadium, followed by a gig at New York’s Giants Stadium in front of 44,000 people (30,000 tickets had been purchased in one day). Smith later reflected gloomily: “It was never our intention to become as big as this.”
6 Cure mainman Robert Smith enjoys eating extremely hot curries. “I myself am a phaal eater,” he explained. In case you wondered.
7 One of The Cure’s earliest tours, in 1979, was as support to Siouxsie And The Banshees. Robert Smith filled on in guitar for the headline band, an experience that profoundly changed his musical outlook: “It was so different to what we were doing with The Cure. Before that, I’d wanted us to be like the Buzzcocks or Elvis Costello, the punk Beatles. Being a Banshee really changed my attitude to what I was doing.”
8 Robert Smith has been with his wife Mary for over 30 years, but the couple have never had children. And they never will, he says. “I kind of know what the two of us have missed. But I think it is more than compensated for by being able to still be the same to her as when we first met.”
9 During the recording of The Cure’s biggest-selling album, 1989’s ‘Disintegration’, Robert Smith became overwhelmed with dark thoughts, brought on by a combination of depression and heavy LSD use. Compounding his gloom, two teenagers from a nearby town had recently committed suicide while listening to The Cure. The band kept a cutting of the news story pinned to the studio wall while recording.
10 A number of films are named after Cure songs, such as ‘Boys Don’t Cry’ (1999) and ‘Just Like Heaven’ (2005). Meanwhile, there are at least four episodes from the TV-series ‘One Tree Hill’ that have Cure songs as their titles: ‘To Wish Impossible Things’ (Season 1, Series Episode 18), ‘From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea’ (Season 3, Series Episode 47), ‘The Same Deep Water as You’ (Season 4, Series Episode 68), and ‘Pictures of You’ (Season 4, Episode 80).
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