DJ Drama shared details about beating a costly opioid addiction.
The Gangsta Grillz mastermind sat down as a guest on the Broken Record Podcast and opened up about how he spent a sizable portion of his career as a “functioning junkie.”
DJ Drama, born Tyree Simmons, revealed that his opioid “journey” began in 2015, and poor sleeping habits led to him using Percocet. Around 2018, Simmons said he vowed to himself to “never go a day without” the drug after experiencing painful withdrawal symptoms.
At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Mr. Thanksgiving made his first attempt at rehab but relapsed towards the end of the year and spent 2021, including his Grammy-winning collaboration with Tyler the Creator “Call Me When You Get Lost” revisiting his old habits.
Simmons reflected on “the feeling of euphoria” that initially came with a 5 mg dose and how, over time more was needed to chase that high, with “the next step” being heroin. “Next thing you know, I’m taking a 120 mg to have that feeling.”
The Clark-Atlanta University alum credits therapy and being hospitalized after an overdose as the catalysts for getting clean. After being asked to join Wiz Khalifa and Logic for 2022’s “Vinyl Verse Tour,” DJ Drama thought ahead to what life on the road would be like while experiencing withdrawals or “ending up like Michael Jackson and Prince” after potentially buying percocet from dealers he couldn’t trust.
DJ Drama reentered rehab and successfully completed detoxing before touring. Friday marks 14 months without opioids. This year he has collaborated with a number of artists and his most recent album “I’m Really Like That” was released in March.