After opening up about his former OxyContin addiction nearly two years ago, legendary superproducer Timbaland is shedding more light on his battle with substance abuse.
In a new interview with Tamron Hall on her eponymous talk show on Wednesday (Feb. 12), Timbo explained the process of beating his demons to overcome his reliance on the pills. He recollected that his addiction first began after he was prescribed painkillers following a dental procedure sometime in 2007. Although he didn’t want to “glorify” his addiction, he admitted the pills made him feel “amazing” and more “confident” in himself.
“It’s one of those things, it’s like something that takes over you. It feels like something that takes over your body,” Timb confessed. “It makes you feel like a superhero.”
The four-time Grammy-winning producer grew so reliant on opioids to the point that he was taking up to 180 milligrams of Oxycontin a day. Admittedly, Timbo added that he was also partly dependent on opioids because he thought the pills were helping his creativity flow more organically.
“The pills make you function but then sometimes you would nod off if people were talking to you because it will make you feel asleep. But it’ll make you function because everything feels great. It could be a bad moment going on but the pill blocks all of that out,” Timb explained. “I thought that the pills were making me create. But as I went back and listened to some of my music, I was like ‘Oh, this isn’t creation. This is a hot mess.’”
The Virginia-native said that he eventually went “cold turkey” when he realized his addiction was damaging his relationship with his ex-wife, Monique Mosley, and his children. This awareness gave him the push he needed to beat the addiction. “My marriage was new and I was scared of it. I think the pills helped me deal with the marriage at the time,” he said. “But when I had my daughter and my son, I kept looking like, ‘I want to be here for my kids’ and it just hit me one day. I didn’t go to rehab; I cut cold turkey. My kids were my backbone to living.”
Timbo also shared that he was able to overcome his drug dependency after he found the strength and humility to be honest with himself about his addiction. He recalled a startling vision his mother once saw from God while he was in the throes of his addiction. Music legend Jimmy Iovine, one of his closest friends in the music biz, also tried to caution Timb against becoming reliant on pills.
“I think it’s part ego and you don’t want to admit that you have a problem because everything in your life is going to a certain high but everything is falling apart,” he acknowledged. “I think people forget that we are still human. I had to realize I’m still that guy from the country, Virginia Beach. I’m just great at music. I felt like I was abusing my gift that God gave me. When I was on the drugs, he took that gift away.”
Listen to a clip of Timbaland’s interview with Tamron Hall below.
(Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile via Getty Images)