Author Topic: 'It's So Easy': Duff McKagan Talks Addiction In New Book  (Read 2953 times)

Offline Velvet Revolver

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Location: Reality
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/24/its-so-easy-duff-mckagan-book_n_1029257.html

In It's So Easy: And Other Lies Duff McKagan, guitarist for the iconic rock band Guns N' Roses, shares his incredible story of playing bass for one of the biggest bands in the world. McKagan writes honestly about the band's early years and the deepening drug troubles suffered by most of the band, including himself.

In 1994, McKagan's pancreas exploded resulting in third-degree burns -- inside his body. Miraculously, he managed to survive and his path to sobriety is just as interesting.

Eventually, McKagan went back to school, got a business degree and is starting his own financial planning company. Now happily married with two daughters, McKagan is thoughtful, profane and sharp-witted, and it shows in It's So Easy.

First of all, I had no idea that you're the inspiration for Duff beer on "The Simpsons."

We played this show on MTV and Axl [Rose] introduced me as "Duff The King of Beers." The band was kind of blowing up and they called me to use my name. I thought it was an adult cartoon, like an art project, and that it was the weirdest thing that they wanted to use my name. I didn't know anything about branding or licensing. I was 23. I was like, "Yeah, cool."

I thought you would be meaner about Axl in the book. You were pretty fair.

That's life, and I think when we go through life, it's easy to demonize people -- especially over things that fell apart. It's not just a rock band; that's human nature. The truth lays somewhere else, probably.

What were you going through at the height of your addiction?

A f**k of a lot. To tell you that I drank a gallon of vodka a day would be right around it, but the thing is, days weren't days like they are now. They ran into other days. Drugs, a lot of cocaine, to keep up. I was self-medicating panic attacks and I always thought, "I'll address it when I get a break, I'll see a professional." Guess what? You don't get a break sometimes.

And your pancreas burst.

Yeah, acute pancreatitis and there's nothing "cute" about it. The pancreas expanded -- it was overtaxed and it burst. The enzymes that digest your food and are supposed to be inside were now on the outside. It burned everything outside. I don't wish it upon anybody. I wanted to die. I was pleading for them to kill me. The morphine that they had me on wasn't doing anything and they had me on Librium for the DTs [Delirium tremens, which include hallucinations and confusion], because you can die from that. The pain was so f**king brutal.

My mom came to see me and she was in a wheelchair with Parkinson's and she was crying. I was like, "Whoa Duff, you f**king f**ker, you f**king ass." I was so pissed at myself. She's taking care of her youngest son; the order of things is wrong. I just about blew it and let this lion of a woman down. That was my clarion moment, when I saw my mom. I wanted to change.

What was the hardest thing for you when you were newly sober?

Number one, the hardest thing to come to grips with was, if you're going to drink, you're going to die and I didn't have sober people around me. I didn't know anything about AA. I'm stubborn and I work hard, so those were the two things I relied on. The first time I went into a supermarket, it was like being on acid ... I was sweating on the verge of a panic attack. I bought cigarettes and BBQ sauce. I guess I just wanted to go into the store and buy something.

Why did you decide to go to college?

Because those first months started to go by, and I did things to fill my time. One of them was that I had all the Guns N' Roses financial statements and I tried reading them. Personally, I had made a good amount of dough for a 30-year-old guy, but I didn't know a thing about money. I'm not a dumb guy but I couldn't figure them out. I didn't know the difference between a stock and a bond -- too embarrassed to ask and I didn't trust anybody -- so went and enrolled in a course. Now I have a Bachelor's degree in business.

And now you have a financial planning company.

When I started going to business school, I started getting calls from my peers asking for my help. I thought, "Well, there are a lot of people like me who make a bunch of money and just get so scared of it and don't know what to do with it."' I just didn't want to be 60 years old and broke.

What was amazing to me was you were doing so well and then you had a relapse in 2005.

Yeah, 10 and a half years later. It wasn't a relapse on booze or coke. It was on Xanax. I think I felt like maybe I was a little bit bulletproof. "I'm good -- I kickbox, I do martial arts, I've got a spiritual center, blah, blah, blah." I carried Xanax for panic attacks. I had them in my backpack for years. I was under a lot of stress. I was the guy from Velvet Revolver -- everyone was coming to me. I took one of these pills for the stress and it just opened up a can of worms. My tolerance just went straight up the roof in no time. I tried to cold turkey-it at home; it was not cool.

There was shame and I guess that's part of your whole recovery. I wouldn't do it again, but I learned that the monster's there. It's not like I love to be f**ked up. Drinking a gallon of vodka -- you're way past loving getting f**ked up. It's something that's there. It's just something that wakes up.

Any chance for a Velvet Revolver reunion?

We'll see. We didn't call it a day. I don't think we'll ever do anything with Scott [Weiland]. I love that guy but I feel sorry for him.

Offline Velvet Revolver

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Location: Reality
Duff McKagan's (VELVET REVOLVER, GUNS N' ROSES, DUFF MCKAGAN'S LOADED) has announced via Twitter that his book, "It's So Easy (And Other Lies)", will be released in paperback later this month.

"It's So Easy (And Other Lies)" landed at position No. 17 on the New York Times "Hardcover Nonfiction" best sellers list. The book arrived on October 4, 2011 via Touchstone Books (formerly Touchstone Fireside), a division of Simon & Schuster.

The first 80 pages of "It's So Easy (And Other Lies)" can be read at this location.

In this raw, utterly candid memoir, McKagan, the rock legend and founding member of rock supergroups GUNS N ROSES and VELVET REVOLVER, shares his story of excess, angst, struggle and triumph. "It's So Easy" details Duff's rise to the pinnacle of fame and fortune, his struggles with alcoholism and drug addiction, his personal crash and burn, his phoenix-like transformation via a unique path to sobriety, and his success as a savvy business investor and loving husband and father.

In a voice that is as honest as it is indelibly his own, Duff one of rock's smartest and most articulate personalities takes readers on his harrowing journey through the dark heart of one of the most notorious bands in rock-and-roll history and out the other side.

Duff's VELVET REVOLVER/GUNS N' ROSES bandmate Slash has published his own book, as has ex-GUNS drummer Steven Adler, who released his life story, "My Appetite For Destruction: Sex And Drugs And Guns N' Roses", in July 2010.

Offline Slashba

  • Gunslinger
  • ****
Looks like Duff will be talking about his book the night before the induction at the House of Blues.  :headbanger:

From the Cleveland House of Blues:

    Presale opportunity to see Duff McKagan of Guns N' Roses

    Show Date: Friday, April 13th at Scene Stage at Cleveland House of Blues

    Presale Starts: Wednesday, March 7th at 10 am - Thursday, March 8th at 10 p.m.

    Promo Code: inductions

    Click here to purchase tickets
    (Rock Hall Members can also gain access to the Foundation Room for this show.  Contact Foundation Room concierge, Ian Atwood at (216)274-3366.  Please mention you are a Rock Hall Member.)

Offline Velvet Revolver

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Location: Reality
Wish I was going to be there...

Offline Velvet Revolver

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Location: Reality
http://legacy.roadrunnerrecords.com/blabbermouth.net/news.aspx?mode=Article&newsitemID=171237&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

  DUFF MCKAGAN's Cleveland Book Reading To Include Musical Accompaniment, Multimedia Presentation

Next Tuesday (March 20) see the paperback release of Duff McKagan's (VELVET REVOLVER, GUNS N' ROSES, DUFF MCKAGAN'S LOADED) critically acclaimed memoir, "It's So Easy (And Other Lies)", a raw, utterly candid autobiography that chronicles the unlikely story of the formation and rise of GUNS N' ROSES to the pinnacle of fame, fortune, and excess. With great candor, charm, and introspection, Duff details his twelve years as the bass player for GN'R as well as his nearly fatal struggle with alcoholism and drug addiction, his unusual path to sobriety, and his success as a savvy business investor and loving husband and father.

The book hits just a few weeks short of GUNS N' ROSES' April 14 induction into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. Duff, who recently told Rolling Stone that he plans to attend the event "with bells on," will celebrate with a book reading at the House Of Blues in Cleveland on April 13. His appearance is billed as "A Punk's Revue." McKagan will read selections from his memoir, with musical accompaniment by Mike Squires on guitar, Jeff Rouse on bass and Paul Huxtler on pedal steel guitar. The multimedia presentation will include photographs and video, too.

"I want to make my book come alive," McKagan tells Cleveland.com.

"I'm a book nerd. . . . I've been to readings. Henry Rollins is a great reader. But I'm not that intense, like he is.

"When I read Upton Sinclair's 'King Coal' or something, it's a 3-D story. You're on that mountain. And you're in that coalmine. And you smell the mules.

"I thought, 'How do I do this?' My story is 3-D, too, hopefully.

"So I got this band behind me. . . . These guys play music, little snippets from my whole career. Even punk-rock stuff that I read about. It's really interesting. Really cool. Really fun."

Fans in Los Angeles can look forward to a signing at Book Soup on March 24.

"It's So Easy (And Other Lies)" landed at position No. 17 on the New York Times "Hardcover Nonfiction" best sellers list. The book arrived on October 4, 2011 via Touchstone Books (formerly Touchstone Fireside), a division of Simon & Schuster.

The first 20 pages of "It's So Easy (And Other Lies)" can be read at this location.

Duff's VELVET REVOLVER/GUNS N' ROSES bandmate Slash has published his own book, as has ex-GUNS drummer Steven Adler, who released his life story, "My Appetite For Destruction: Sex And Drugs And Guns N' Roses", in July 2010.

Offline Captain Tophat

  • Sniper Assassin
  • *****
  • Official Stamper Out of Idiots
I wanna see that!  :o

Duff's book was seriously fucking awesome.