"I'm sober, I'm good," the rocker says before receiving an award in New York

By People Staff
September 27, 2007 02:00 PM
Gregory Pace/BEImages

Richie Sambora was all smiles Wednesday night as the rehabbing rocker stepped out with his fellow Bon Jovi bandmates to be honored by the Recording Academy’s New York Chapter.

Sambora, who’s been receiving ongoing treatment, declared, “Welcome to the record business rehab.”

Before accepting the honor along with the band, Sambora, wearing a black suit and looking rested and happy, told Foxnews.com’s Roger Friedman, “I’m sober, I’m good.”

Of his time at the Cirque Lodge in Utah (where Lindsay Lohan is also receiving treatment), he said, “I’m going back just to do finish this weekend. I figured, why not get to the bottom of this and really understand it?”

A source close to the 48-year-old musician told PEOPLE, “He has been sober since June and is doing really well. It’s always been planned that he would take some time away to continue on his road to health.”

Also honored at the event were Alicia Keys and gospel singer Donnie McClurkin. The bash also celebrated the 50th anniversary of the original recording of West Side Story.

Melissa Etheridge, a self-proclaimed Bon Jovi fan and friend of the band, was also there to help celebrate her pals. She performed her own versions of the band’s hits “Wanted Dead or Alive” and “Living on a Prayer.”

Asked about Richie’s treatment, she told PEOPLE: “It’s tough. You know when you are held up in that rock and roll lifestyle, you kind of have to grow up and get yourself better. But he is going to be make it okay. He’s a strong person and he’s going to be just fine.”


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