Flavor Flav Says He Was Spending Up to $2,600 a Day on Drugs for 6 Years Before Getting Sober

"I guess God wanted me to live," Flavor Flav said as he discussed the peak of his drug addiction, during which he spent between $2,400 and $2,600 a day on his habit for six years

Flavor Flav
Flavor Flav. Photo: Marc Stamas/Getty

Flavor Flav is opening up about how his drug addiction controlled his life.

After celebrating two years of sobriety in October, the Public Enemy founding member, 63, said he "never really let people know exactly" what was going on with him at the height of his addiction as he appeared last week on the Off the Record with DJ Akademiks podcast.

"There was a time that I was spending $2,400 to $2,600 a day... for six years straight, you do the math," he said. "That's how much I spent on drugs."

During the worst periods of his addiction, he was spending almost $1 million on drugs a year.

He was also dealing and dipping into his own supply.

"I ain't gonna lie, I sold a lot. But I was my best customer ... I had a lot of money at the time too, I was just doing the wrong things with my money," Flav recalled.

Flav, born William Jonathan Drayton Jr., explained that he "maintained myself very well" while using and "kept it hidden too," but he was ultimately able to quit abusing substances and start his sobriety journey in 2020.

"I guess God wanted me to live. And he knows that I'm a mouthpiece to the world," he said. "So, I feel that God let me live through that, so that way, I could teach people about the mistakes that I made. And hopefully, they won't make them later on in life.

"Drugs are easy to get on, and they're hard as hell to get off of," Flav added.

The Flavor of Love star, who wrote about his addiction struggles in his 2011 memoir Flavor Flav: The Icon The Memoir, also called on today's hip-hop artists to do better when it comes to depicting drug use in their lyrics.

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"Back in the days, when we used to make drug records, we used to talk about selling drugs," he reasoned. "Talking about who can make the most money off drugs, who's balling off selling drugs. It was a competition thing to all of the hustlers."

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"Now today's music, we're talking about doing drugs. So, there's a big change within the music ... It's giving younger kids the wrong idea," said Flav.

If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, please contact the SAMHSA helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.

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