Oprah and Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler Discuss His Drug Addiction

Oprah’s newest series on her network OWN entitled “Oprah’s Next Chapter,” debuted with a two-hour episode exclusively featuring Steven Tyler – front man of the rock band Aerosmith. The entire episode was filmed in and around Tyler’s childhood lake home in Sunapee, New Hampshire. Ironically, this same small, quiet, idyllic country town is where Tyler met his partner-in-crime Joe Perry, Aerosmith’s lead guitarist. The interview went into detail about all aspects of Tyler’s life and placed extra focus on his battle with addiction.

Many of Oprah’s questions focused on expanding upon the information Tyler had divulged involving his long history of drug abuse in his tell-all memoir Does The Noise In My Head Bother You? that was released last year. Oprah opened up the conversation candidly stating, “May I just say…I am surprised you are still alive.” Tyler responded by saying, “It used to be cool to hear that, now it kinda hurts.”

Tyler’s History With Abuse and Addiction Cost Him Dearly

Tyler has guesstimated he spent approximately $20 million on illicit substances from weed to heroin. He equates heroin to putting on a warm fur coat in the midst of being “hen-pecked” by fans when performing Madison Square Garden. He actually used to hide a paper cup filled with cocaine and a straw in a drumhead on stage so he could takes hits while performing. And the band would always have a six-foot full-length mirror on their rider to be kept backstage so everyone could get high together.

Tyler’s recollection of drug use may, at times, seem almost inviting, but he pulls no punches in a recent interview with Matt Lauer when discussing the ramifications of his drug abuse by saying, “It took my children away, it took my band away, it took my marriages away, and I was on my knees.”

After a Long Period of Sobriety, Tyler Relapsed on Prescription Meds

After Aerosmith as a group made a commitment to staying clean and kept it for many years, Tyler fell prey once again following a few rough years emotionally and a painful medical condition that caused his doctor to prescribe painkillers and sleeping pills. After falling off stage during a concert and sustaining injuries that caused them to cancel tour dates, Tyler’s band mates publicly questioned if he was using again. Tyler entered rehab and soon after finishing treatment was offered a job as judge on American Idol. Tyler credits the natural “high” he gets from being in front of millions of people each night on Idol as helpful in staying away from drugs.

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