This week brings more theatrical releases than American audiences have gotten in ages — and possibly more than they’re ready for now, as vaccine rollouts…
Rapper Abz, 38, opens up about his booze and drugs addiction in Channel 5's new documentary Me And My Addiction on tomorrow night at 9pm.
He reckons his love of party drugs stemmed from being in 5ive from 1997 to 2001, but worsened when the boyband were dropped at the height of their fame.
Abz said: “There was cocaine everywhere in the music industry, it was one of the things that came with the job. There's addiction everywhere.
"I would see people doing it in parties, restaurants, clubs, it was an everyday thing.
“In the band I would have highs and lows, but I don’t think my rock 'n' roll addiction really kicked in until after the band, when we were dropped. I was in a downward spiral because I'd been around the world twice and eaten in the finest restaurants and then there was nothing.
"There should be more in place from record companies. There should be popstar insurance."
Abz lost all his money have he left the band – claiming he was given little advice.
He said: "Our record label wanted to end it on a high when they dropped us. They took us in, wrapped us in cotton wool, chewed us up and spat us out. We weren't given any good advice about tax or finance or putting money away. Everyone just cares about their piece of the pie.
"I'd never had that much money before, I was a boy from Hackney, one of the poorest parts of London. It was too much, too quick.
"We made the record company four or five million off the first album and we were being paid £100 a week – where's that money?
"I was thinking about opening up a little popstar retreat where they've been chewed up and spat out, giving them advice. There should be a rehab for them before they're dropped to help them deal with life again.
"The music industry is still crawling with drugs, cocaine is always going to be the music drug, plus loads of new ones I've never heard of. People are going to come out a shadow of their former selves. I met Prince and Mohanned Ali and I don't even remember. It's messed up."
Abz has appealed to Zayn to stop smoking marijuana to help his well-documented struggle with anxiety.
The former One Direction singer previously admitted to using the Class B drug to help him with his music in an interview with NME in 2016.
At the time he said: "It helps sometimes with the creative process, if you’re smoking a good weed.”
And last year he opened up about his anxiety in an interview with Vogue after cancelling his appearance at 2016's Capital Summertime Ball, telling fans: "Unfortunately my anxiety that has haunted me throughout the last few months around live performances has gotten the better of me."
Abz said: "I worry about Zayn and his anxiety, I've suffered that and I know that where you don't want to be around people.
"You're anxious and you start worrying. Cannabis doesn't help anxiety either, I've been there. He needs to give it up. I know what they're all going through.
"I hope my message reaches him."
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