Chaka Khan Talks Past Drug Use at Essence Music Festival

Chaka Khan Talks Past Drug Use at Essence Music Festival

At this year’s Essence Music Festival, legendary singer Chaka Khan not only shared with her fans many of her numerous feel good grooves, but opened up about her past drug addiction and how it influenced some of her most beloved hits.

According to The Boombox, during her Saturday, July 2, show at the New Orleans Superdome, the former Rufus & Chaka Khan front woman ran through a cadre of classic hits including “I Feel For You,” “Through the Wire,” “I’m Every Woman” and “Ain’t Nobody.” But when it came time to perform the song “Trouble Little Angel,” Chaka talked with fans about her past struggle with drugs and how after years of battling her addictions, she’s finally sober.


“This next song is a song I wrote, but I don’t remember writing it because I was high,” she admitted of the song ‘Trouble Little Angel.’ “That was then, this is now, I’m seven years clean.”

In January, Chaka spoke candidly with popular blogger B. Scott about her drug use, explaining that her addiction has left her with a hazy memory of her music heyday as well as offering advice to others dealing with drug abuse.


“Go to rehab … if you want to stop, if you want to live,” advised Chaka. “I would really appeal to them to choose life. And it hurts. It’s not easy because self-medication is about escapism and not wanting to feel. And it doesn’t feel good all the time, but at least you’re feeling and that’s what life is about.” – nicholas robinson

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