The Weeknd opens up about his once "heavy" drug use.
The 26-year-old "Starboy" singer, whose real name is Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, recalls to The Guardian that upon leaving his mother's house at 17, he and his pal La Mar Taylor moved into a one-bedroom in a suburb outside of Toronto, Canada. It was there that The Weeknd started frequently doing drugs, including ketamine, cocaine, MDMA, mushrooms and cough syrup, according to the publication.
“When I had nothing to do but make music, it was very heavy,” he says. “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."
The Weeknd also admits that he sometimes reverts back to creating music the way he did when was younger. “I’ll be completely honest with you, the past couple of albums, I do get back to that,” he says, referring to his prior drug use. “Even on this new album, you have writer’s block. And sometimes you’re like, 'I can’t do this sober.'"
As for whether he's ever sought treatment for drug use, he responds, "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."
The Weeknd also alludes to having run-ins with the law when he was a teenager. "A lot of people don’t get that second chance. But around that age, you usually get one second chance after a slap on the wrist. And you either take the experience and think, ‘This is it, final straw’, or you don’t," he explains. "And the next move after that? It’s your entire life. You become who you become because of the next move you make."
"The mind of a 19 year old is very different from the mind of a 26 year old," he adds. "You grow. You get into better relationships. You experience more, meet more people, better people. But when you’re in a dark hole, at an earlier point in your life -- you write about the mindset you’re in at that moment."