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Lead singer Justin Hawkins exits The Darkness
UK glam-rockers The Darkness now find themselves without their dynamic frontman, Justin Hawkins, who told UK publication The Sun that being in the group isn't compatible with his new quest for sobriety.
"[Cocaine] affected every single decision I made," Hawkins told The Sun in a story published today (10/11), admitting that he's spent more than a quarter-million dollars on the drug over the last three years. "Everything was decided on the basis that I wanted to take cocaine at some point. I would demand that we were the first on at awards shows so that I could get on with my drinking and drugging.
"I feel like I've lost three years of my life. I'm only just coming to terms with what has happened because I was always off my face."
In August, amid rumors that The Darkness had broken up, the band posted a statement on its official website that said Hawkins had entered a rehab center earlier that month. While in rehab, he decided to quit the band.
"It would be damaging to my recovery to stay on," he told the newspaper. "I'm not blaming the band for my problem--I am an addict. There are people who can be in bands and stay clean, but I'm not one of them.
"I am going to do a solo record at some point and get into scoring films. But this is all new so the future is still uncertain."
As for The Darkness, the Sun reports that the band will probably continue, with bass player Richie Edwards, who joined the group last year, likely taking over on lead vocals. The other members of the band are Hawkins' brother Dan (guitar) and Ed Graham (drums).
However, a message posted today on the message board of the band's website was non-committal.
"We're sorry that you had to find this out through the newspapers, but we were hoping until the last minute that this--Justin's exit--wasn't going to happen," the message reads. "We--Dan, Ed and Richie--are still in total shock and can't say at this stage what the future holds. We would like to thank all our fans, partners and family for their continuous support. You will hear from us, once we know what we want to do...."