Rapper and singer Mac Miller has died at the age of 26-years-old from an apparent drug overdose following a long battle with addiction, reports TMZ. Miller struggled with addiction for much of the later years of his life, something which led to the end of his relationship with singer Ariana Grande. While he had made many efforts to maintain sobriety, these efforts ultimately failed.
Miller told Complex that he first turned to drugs following the release of his 2011 debut album, Blue Side Park, coupled with a grueling tour that saw him play 53 shows in just six months, 20 of which were in Europe. The album reviews and constant touring caused Miller to start using promethazine mixed with codeine, two ingredients commonly found in perscription-strength cough syrup. The high use of cough syrup as a recreational drug has birthed many slang names, including ‘lean’.
“I was not happy and I was on lean very heavy, I was so f*cked up all the time it was bad. My friends couldn’t even look at me the same. I was lost.”
While that was the first time Miller began heavily using drugs, it wasn’t his first experience with narcoatics, having admitted to being a drug dealer in high school, albeit a bad one.
Met Mac Miller back in 2012. Super sweet guy. So many lives lost to mental health and addiction. Please reach out for help if you or someone you know is struggling. There are people here for you.
— Nev Schulman (@NevSchulman) September 7, 2018
In his 2014 self-released mixtape Faces, Miller rapped about his addiction, which had seemingly worsened since Blue Side Park. He spoke of having a “drug habit like Phillip Hoffman”, adding that it “will probably put me in a coffin.” It was a dark time for Miller, who admitted that he was worried about what he was doing to himself in a 2015 Billboard interview.
“I was doing a lot of drugs around that time, which is another difference now: I’m not doing as many drugs. It just eats at your mind, doing drugs every single day, every second. It’s rough on your body. That was the plan with Faces [Closing song] ‘Grand Finale’ was supposed to be the last song I made on earth. I don’t feel that way as much anymore.”
Faces reflected where Miller was emotionally at the time, and his 2015 release of Good A.M. gave hope that he was clean. While never admitting to being fully sober, Miller spoke out about his addiction, admitting that he was not in nearly as bad of a place as he was in years past.
Unfortunately, the truth was much darker, as Miller was never able to stay clean, and it was his addiction that caused the issues that eventually lead to his split with Ariana Grande. As reported by Refinery 29, he described their relationship as “toxic.”
Grande was criticized on Twitter following Miller’s recent DUI and car accident, but she hit back hard, saying that she supported Miller’s sobriety, and that she continued to wish he would get clean.
— Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande) May 23, 2018