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Shocking Revelations

KORN Frontman Jonathan Davis Recalls Meth Use & How He Sobered Up

The Korn frontman has made no secret of his past meth use, but says it wouldn't have been possible to tour on meth.

korn frontman jonathan davis
Photo: Steve Thrasher

Korn have made no secret of their past dabbling with hard drugs, namely methamphetamines. Frontman Jonathan Davis was recently a guest on Steve-O's podcast, Steve-O's Wild Ride and the former Jackass star couldn't help but ask Davis to reminisce about his past meth use.

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Steve-O asked when Davis' drug problems started and Davis responded "It started before Korn blew up. I started doing meth when I moved to Huntington, and there's a lot of meth there from Bakersfield, and I got hooked up with someone that was giving me tons of it there.

"So on the first album [1994's self-titled], we have a title called 'Helmet in the Bush' – it's about meth. [Laughs] I started doing meth there, that was the first record.

"And then I got sober right after we did the third record [1998's 'Follow the Leader']. So I stopped meth when we started touring because I couldn't function; there's no way I could be up for two days and tour and keep it together, and I had to stop."

As for how Davis kicked the habit, he just needed some old fashioned sleep "So the day we took off on tour, the first tour with House of Pain and Biohazard, we got in our trailer and we built bunks, and I just got on that bunk and I slept for five fucking days, got up and played a show, and that's when I kicked it."

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Steve-O pressed Davis if he ever toured while on meth, and Davis said it would have been impossible. "No, it was impossible; I couldn't do meth and fucking tour, it wouldn't work. So I started drinking, and then I became a raging alcoholic – and cocaine occasionally when I could find it. But yeah, they go hand in hand."

Steve-O followed up by asking if Davis ever had any psychosis or hallucinations while on meth or cocaine. "I was always smart enough to know when to put it down. [Laughs] When I start getting paranoid or weird, I'd just go to bed, but I saw a lot of people do that shit.

"One of my meth dealers, I went to his house and he had holes on the walls where he's like, 'There's cameras in the walls, man!' And I start talking to people, they're like, 'They're following me in helicopters and I could see the agents in the bushes!'

"And it's like, 'Oh my god, you need to go to sleep.' I never got the weird, crazy psychosis, but I met a lot of people that did, and that was when it gets scary."

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You can view the whole interview below, or see some more transcriptions over at Ultimate Guitar. In a 2014 interview with Rolling Stone, Davis didn't mince words about the time period of their debut record, "I was a meth addict when I was doing that fucking record."

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