Art often comes from the darkest of places, it is common knowledge. The Weeknd is definitely a much appreciated artist who also deserves his recognition. However, not everybody knows what the singer has been through because of substance usage before becoming famous.
The 26 year old recently sat down for an interview with The Guardian and decided to open up to his fans about his “dark” history with drug use.
Abel Tesfaye, his birth name, started to talk about his upbringing in Toronto, Canada saying:
“I didn’t have a father figure in the house. No boys around. Just me and my mom.”
He dropped out of high school at age 17 and moved out of his mom’s house and in with a friend; they lived in a one bedroom apartment in the Toronto suburbs. The two teenagers spend most of their little income on alcohol and drugs, especially cocaine, ketamine, MDMA, mushrooms, and cough syrup.
“When I had nothing to do but make music, it was very heavy. Drugs were a crutch for me. There were songs on my first record that were seven minutes long, rambling – whatever thoughts I was having when I was under the influence at the time. I can’t see myself doing that now.”
Unfortunately he never afforded to go to rehab.
“No. Definitely not. I think that’s more when you’re privileged, you know? Going to a therapist is not something you do when you’re growing up as a street kid in Toronto … Sorry, bro.”
Of course, all that drug use and underage drinking spiraled out of control, and by the time the hit maker turned 18 he already had had a few run-ins with the law.
The Canadian singer thinks he is in a far better place than he was in his early youth, however, he admitted that he still uses small amounts to help him create music.
“I’ll be completely honest with you. The past couple of albums, I do get back to that. Even on this new album. You have writer’s block. And sometimes you’re like, I can’t do this sober.”
However, he added that now it’s different because: “Right now, I feel in control. Where it takes me after, I don’t know.”