THE PRIEST OF JUDGE frontman Rob Halford, who will celebrate the 36th anniversary of his sobriety on Thursday (January 6), spoke with Spain’s Mariskal Rock about how he has coped and avoided the urge to relapse since 1986. “I think about it all the time,” he said. he about. drink alcohol. “It’s an addiction. When I look at it Phoenix Cardinals playing on tv the other day, there are constant commercials for beer and for alcohol and stuff like that. And I know it’s there. And that’s a temptation. So you need to have all the mental tools ready to get you through that case. Because it’s about cases. And I live one day at a time. I have lived one day at a time for 35 years now. And that’s all that matters. That’s the moment. You are living in the moment – not yesterday, not tomorrow; it’s snowing. And you should be ready when the little beer devil comes on your shoulder and says, ‘Come on, Rob. Have a little beer. ‘ “Fuck off.” [Laughs] Because I do not want it that way again, man. I do not want to be that person. I was miserable. I was not happy. I was bad at people. I will not go through that again. So it’s also part of me finding a balance in my daily life. “
Rob previously talked about how he manages to stay clean on the road in a 2020 interview with “Across the board” podcast. “It’s not easy,” he said at the time. “It’s a lot one day at a time. You get all the tools and resources from your rehab experience. I use them every day. A lot of it’s like mental notes – talking things through. Sometimes I talk to them a lot of it is internal, so it is really important on a daily level of sobriety.
“When I was in rehab [in 1986], there is anonymity in rehab, but at the same time, tell everyone your life story so everyone knew what I was doing. And I remember we talked about going back to this world of sex and drugs and rock and roll and booze. I do not know how to cope, because it will not be a gradual immersion in society, so to speak. I will not be able to take small steps; I go straight into the deep end. I can not go to work and say to my bandmates: ‘You can not drink. You can not do this. You can not because it is control. Accept your powerlessness.
“I never think we in the band had a seated conversation about this, but I think there was care and understanding – as there still is.” Halford went on. “But I would be the last person to say that I have to set a set of rules, because then this whole business of living my life is on my terms. [turns into something] you push on to other people: ‘Well, now you can not do this,’ ‘You can not.’ It’s just hypocrisy at the highest level.
“Even now when we’re flying for a show and the guys have to have a beer or a cocktail or whatever, man, I would love the cold beer. I would love a sip of Jack and Coke. I can smell it because we is in a plane together.It’s like this little angel on one side and the devil on the other side.My instant thought is that I will never be sick again.I will never ever feel so bad ever again.I have never want to be in that awful, dark, lonely place ever again.So it’s fleeting.But again, it’s always there.
“When I’m home, especially [during] this COVID thing, [my longtime partner] Thomas do not drink. When I first met Thomas, he stopped drinking. So that’s a support for me. I’m never really around alcohol that much or drugs when I’m not working. But yes, when my fans, or when PRIEST fans come to see us, yes, they need some drinks; they may have a few spliffs [and] do everything else recreationally. They have a right to that. And they live their lives, and they party, and they have the time of their lives that they should. They do not have an alcohol problem; they do not have a substance abuse problem. There are people who can enjoy these things in life and that [has] no effect on them, in the physical and mental sense.
“So it’s an absolute miracle,” Halford added. “I can only say that it’s a miracle that I have come this far from 6 January 1986 to 1 December 2020 without slipping once. And I’m not bragging, because it’s the whole past – it’s the past ; it’s gone. I live in the present. I do not think of yesterday or tomorrow; I live now. But I am grateful that I have been able to reach this far without fail. Not to fail – that is the wrong word.Without a drop of the wagon – no matter what the expression is.I am grateful that I have been able to reach so far and stay clean and sober.Because if I did not, who knows where I had gotten off , and where I would have done it. ended? “
Halford previously credited his belief in a higher power to help him in his recovery. “When I got clean and sober, it was a big change in my life,” he said during a performance on HATE GROWTH frontman Jamey Jasta‘s official podcast, “The Jasta Show”. “And part of my recovery is just having this higher belief in power. And it works. It works, man. It’s really, really important.”
Halford added: “There will probably be people listening [this] podcasts that have nothing like it in their lives and it’s amazing; it’s about acceptance. But I always tell people, if you think about it, the simplest thing I do is pray. I actually pray a lot. And even if you do not believe in prayer, just give it a try. Pray for a good day, or just pray for your friend, or whatever it may be. And that’s great, man, because it’s definitely working. I guarantee it really works. And now I sound like [American evangelical Christian evangelist] Billy Graham“but I’m just trying to express some of the things that are important to me in everyday life and that enable me to go out on stage every night and do my job.”
In an interview with Classic rock reunion, Halford said he stopped using drugs because he “was tired of feeling sick and tired. I will always remember the first show I did clean and sober … It was in New Mexico, in Albuquerque,” he remembered. “I literally felt exalted when everything came with such clarity. I was able to really … enjoy the performance of THE PRIEST OF JUDGE without having all the other things in front of him. Since that day, it has been a miracle. “
Halford added: “Everyone needs to see things in their lives at some point [doesn’t have to] be splashes and drugs. You can eat too much, or you can not exercise, or whatever it is … It’s not easy to stay clean and sober in rock and roll. There are plenty of temptations from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep, especially when you are on the go. [But] I think we are some of the strongest people, my friends and my sober brothers in metal. “
Rob has spent much of the last year and a half promoting his autobiography, “Admit”, which arrived in September 2020 via Hachette books. It was written with Ian Gittins, co-author of “The Heroin Diaries” by Nikki Sixx.