During the 1960s and 1970s, it seemed as if it was absolutely impossible to be considered a true rock star if you weren’t battling as many drug abuse demons as humanly possible – and still putting on the show of your life each and every single night out.
Performers like The Doors, The Who, the Sex Pistols, the Rolling Stones, Ozzy Osbourne, and others all have been pretty candid about their experiences with drug abuse and drug addiction, and that the decades mentioned above were some of the most drug fueled in human history, and also produced some of the greatest music ever.
Thankfully, the overwhelming majority of those drug abuse and substance-abuse issues subsided from the 1990s on, though some are nervous that those wild and crazy days are coming back into vogue today – especially with the amount of celebrities and musicians that are fighting serious drug addiction and drug abuse habits right now.
Musicians like Courtney Love, Jeff Tweedy, Jo Dee Messina, Scott Weiland, Kelly Osbourne (daughter of Ozzy), and more have all fallen victim to drug abuse and substance abuse issues, though they haven’t suffered the ultimate fate that some musicians like Whitney Houston have, thankfully.
Doctors, drug counselors, and other industry insiders argue that today things are a lot calmer now than they were in the past, but they aren’t saying that drug addiction is for the history books in the music industry. Musicians are still getting high, still abusing drugs, and still turning to substances to fight through whatever it is that allows them to become so creative and so inspired in the first place – and that’s why a significant amount of these celebrities have been arrested for a DUI or other drug-related crimes and punished along the way.
Musicians that have been caught – and punished – for DUI/drug abuse issues in the recent past
It isn’t all that challenging to find a list of a dozen or more musicians and celebrities that have been caught with substance abuse issues, many of them charged with a DUI, and some of them even having to spend a little bit of time behind bars because of these crimes.
Lindsay Lohan is a prime example of a musician/entertainer that has struggled with substance abuse and addiction over the last few years, and she was arrested for a DUI multiple times over the last four years before being sentenced to time in a real jail. Critics of the court system allege that her stay was considerably shorter than most anyone else would have been were they put in the same situation. In essence they believe she received preferential treatment, but in reality, she received the same punishment a non-celebrity would have.
Chad Kroger (lead vocalist of Nickelback) was arrested and convicted of drunk driving in June 2006, driving around with a blood alcohol level that was almost twice the legal limit. He was required to pay a significant fine, serve time doing community service, and commit to substance-abuse classes and therapy – and has thus far stayed out of the news for similar reasons.
Flo Rida (the rapper) was arrested in June 2011 for a DUI, and his arrest was further compounded after the arresting officer discovered that he was not only driving with a blood alcohol level twice the legal limit, but that he was also driving around with a suspended driver’s license. He was hit with a significant fine, had his license suspension extended, and was required to participate in community service and alcohol abuse classes.
Nick Carter (of the Backstreet Boys) was arrested in March 2005 while driving under the influence, though he fought his arrest and came to a plea deal before a conviction was put on the books. The details of his settlement weren’t released to the public. It’s likely that he had to pay a significant fine and commit to therapy sessions, and today he has publicly stated that he is completely sober – and has been sober since that incident.
Celebrity arrests for DUIs have fallen off significantly in the last few years
Though the media makes a major deal out of every celebrity arrest, and an even more significant deal out of every arrest related to drug or substance abuse issues, the truth of the matter is fewer and fewer celebrities are getting into this kind of trouble now than ever before.
Yes, celebrities, musicians, and entertainers are always likely going to have to battle substance abuse issues (it’s a major part of the “celebrity culture”), but more and more these people are realizing that the bottom line matters most – and they will be completely cut off from their business partners, managers, and their entire career if they are able to clean up their image, shoot straight, and stay out of trouble.