John Taylor of the band, Duran Duran, says that “he never really enjoyed the taste of beer.” In fact, when he was growing up, most of his friends couldn’t wait to start drinking. But Taylor really become involved with alcohol when he was older and frequenting the night clubs with his band.
Taylor is the co-founder of Duran Duran, a pop band popular throughout the 80’s and into the 90’s. The group was formed in 1973 by Taylor who played the bass and Nick Rhodes who played the keyboard. Later, John Taylor joined them to play the drums, Andy Taylor played guitar, and Simon Le Bon was the lead singer.
Taylor shares in an interview with The Fix that alcohol didn’t always really do it for him. Although it was always a part of the nightlife, it wasn’t until he started doing cocaine that he found the energy to keep going all night. Initially, Taylor just though that his drinking and drug using was all a part of “being cool” and staying social. But little by little his habit with cocaine became more and more out of hand.
Although Taylor’s dreams of success were coming true, he admits:
“I started putting the cocaine before the gig. It became the juice that kept me going, and it made me a lot less consistent than I would have been, a lot more erratic.”
Over time, Taylor recognized that he needed to be a better musician and a better father. He wanted to become a better person. He slowly began to work on healing from drug use and drinking, starting with therapy. But Taylor says that although therapy helped, he needed more. At first, though, Taylor became dependent on therapy, arranging sessions in both LA and London, as he traveled back and forth. Finally, someone said to him that he needed to go to 12-step meetings. Taylor didn’t go right away, but he eventually went into a 30-day rehab program. And he’s remained sober ever since.
Today, Taylor describes his recovery as trying to remain responsible in his adult life. He explains that there is frequently a battle between the little boy in him who always wants to get away with things and the adult who needs to take responsibility for his actions. Taylor has become more and more responsible and mature because of the supports in his life and learning how to be more emotionally sober. He explains that his spirituality has helped him with that.
Taylor describes that having a Higher Power has helped him in his recent adult years. With help from a sponsor and other sober friends along the way, Taylor has found a way to be comfortable with spirituality, prayer, and moving at a slower pace. Taylor doesn’t have to have things “Now!” Instead, he knows he can slowly work toward the things he wants, without feeling manic like he used to.
Like most celebrity musicians, Taylor experienced the high of fame, fortune, and success which came at a cost – addiction and self-harm. But with the help of therapists, drug rehab, and 12-step meetings, he turned his life of fame into one of sobriety.