Country singer Keith Urban has opened up about his battle with drug and alcohol addiction – and how “lucky” he is his career is still intact.
The Australian country singer first entered a Nashville rehab for treatment in 1998. Nearly a decade later, shortly after he married “Eyes Wide Shut” star Nicole Kidman in 2006, he spent more months at the Betty Ford Center — at his wife’s urging.
“Everyone does what they want to have a great time. I just realized I’m allergic [substances]. Someone said, “You have an allergy? What happens when you drink?’ And I said, ‘I’m breaking out in handcuffs,'” Urban, 54, said in a profile for the Sunday Times.
“I had to find another way to be in the world,” Urban said of how his sobriety transformed his life — and his career.
“I’m glad it didn’t change anything about my music. I wrote a lot of hits while drunk. I’ve written a lot soberly,” he continued. “I’m glad it didn’t define my creativity.”
In 2016, Urban told Rolling Stone that Kidman, 54 – with whom he has daughters Faith, 11, and Sunday, 13 – at one point staged an intervention for him to deal with his demons. Last September, he continued to talk about the couple’s rocky start after their wedding.
“I caused my fresh marriage to implode,” he said said the Australian version of the magazine. “She survived, but it’s a miracle that she made it. I was spiritually awakened with her. I use the phrase “I was born into her,” and that’s how I feel. And for the first time in my life, I was able to shake off the shackles of addiction.”
Urban described his wife’s encouragement in helping him get back on the road to recovery in 2009 song “thank you”, the texts of which include:
And I thank you for my heart
I thank you for my life
And I thank God for grace and mercy
And that you became my wife
In an interview with the New Times, he noted that his father – who died in 2015 — was an alcoholic and he “grew up in an alcoholic home and it took me a long time to believe I was wired the same way.”
Urban also doesn’t talk about his sobriety because he wants his fans to have fun at his concerts.
“I don’t talk about it much because I love that my audience can just come and have a great time,” he added. “I have nothing against drugs or alcohol.”
In the interview with the Australian version of Rolling Stone last year, Urban revealed that it took him “a long time” to understand that he had a problem.
“It took me a long time to recognize my alcoholism. A long time because I didn’t drink like my father, so I compared everything to him. So for me it just took a long time. But I was finally able to make the right decision in my life that I wish my father had made,” he said.
https://nypost.com/2022/04/18/keith-urban-im-thankful-my-alcoholism-didnt-destroy-my-music/ I’m thankful my alcoholism didn’t destroy my music