Darryl “DMC” McDaniels has recently shared some insight on his battle with alcoholism. In a new episode of Will Smith’s Class of ’88 podcast, he explained that his journey has been very lengthy and it even led him to contemplate suicide.
In the interview, DMC said his increase in drinking began while Run-DMC was evolving into the New Jack Swing era in the late ’80s. ’
“[Jam Master Jay] got me wearing a green, yellow, purple, and green suit doing the running man,” he said. Jam Master Jay was often credited for giving the group their style, however, the shift took a toll on DMC. This prompted him to look for some sort of escape from it all.
“There’s nothing wrong with Jay bringing New Jack Swing into Run-DMC,” he added. “It just wasn’t for me, but I did it anyway, not realizing it was going to affect me mentally later.”
Due to the mental toll, he began drinking beers during the day and then transitioned to hard liquor at night. He would upkeep this routine daily until his drinking habits resulted in vocal spasms, challenging him to be able to do his job properly. The rapper underwent a very risky surgery to his vocal chords that did not work, leading him to wanting to kill himself.
“After nothing worked, now I’m thinking of killing myself,” he expressed. “Because I’m thinking, I can’t do the thing that I was put here to do. So I don’t want to disappoint Run and Jay, I don’t want to go tell them I can’t do this no more, so let me just kill myself. My life ended, so I thought, when the Run-DMC thing quieted down and I lost myself. So now, I’m really gonna kill myself. I have to kill myself.”
Eventually, he turned to a life of sobriety and for a more happy life, allowing him to continue performing.