Stevie Ray Vaughan
Many people remember Stevie Ray Vaughan for his guitar playing
skills and the many albums that he produced. Few people remember
him for the drug addictions. While the man was always able to
play for large crowds, he wasn't always able to get the help he
Stevie Ray Vaughan
Beginning in the mid-1980s, Stevie Ray Vaughan began using cocaine.
It would be the drug he turned to the most in order to get through
the day. He spoke with many of his fans prior to starting a song
about drugs. He talked about how there were days that he wouldn't
even be able to get up and it was because of the drugs.
It was nice that Vaughan was able to give advice to fans, though
he wasn't always able to take his own advice. He smoked pot, snorted
coke, and drank a lot of alcohol. However, it was cocaine and
Crown Royal whisky that were his favorites. In the mornings, he
would often dissolve cocaine into a glass of Crown just so that
he could get a morning pick-me-up (and upper and a downer at the
The morning ritual had created an addiction. It was also causing
severe ulcerations within his stomach lining. While he was working
through his drug addictions, he managed to put out an album and
go on tour. This happened during 1986 and 1987. While on tour
in Germany, he started to experience a lot of health problems.
Stevie Ray Vaughan Playing Guitar
Despite Vaughan's desire to continue, he was only able to make
it through a few more shows. He was admitted to a London hospital.
Dr. Victor Bloom told him that if he had not come in when he did,
he would have only made it one more month. This is the same doctor
that had helped other musicians with drug addictions, including
Pete Townsend and Eric Clapton.
Later, Stevie Ray Vaughan went to Atlanta, Georgia to check into
a drug rehabilitation center, Peachford Hospital. After experiencing
a full recovery, he spoke to Alcoholics Anonymous and appeared
on MTV Unplugged. He began living a more spiritual lifestyle and
no longer ordered that alcohol be left backstage during his performances.
Stevie Ray Vaughan died on August 27, 1990 after boarding a helicopter
headed for Chicago. Several members of Eric Clapton's band were
onboard as well and died instantly due to the crash.
Bonnie Raitt has credited Stevie Ray Vaughan with giving her
the courage to end her substance abuse issues.