Not only did Elton John’s new book Love Is the Cure: On Life, Loss and the End of AIDS hit shelves today, but the Sir himself also hit the Today show this morning.
In the first half of his two-part interview with Matt Lauer (the other portion will air on tomorrow’s program), the 65-year-old musician admitted that he’s made a number of regrettable decisions in his time, many of which took place during the AIDS epidemic.
“I wasted such a big part of my life, when this epidemic was beginning to happen in the early 1980s and I was a drug addict and self-absorbed,” John told Lauer from his home. “You know, I was having people die right, left, and center around me — friends. And yet I didn’t stop the life that I had, which is the terrible thing about addiction. It’s that bad of a disease.”
John’s memoir further describes his ’80s misadventures: “I was consumed by cocaine, booze, and who knows what else. I apparently never got the memo that the Me generation had ended.”
But John is grateful that things didn’t turn out worse for him. “You know what?” the singer said to Lauer. “When you take a drug and you take a drink and you mix those two together, you think you’re invincible.”
“I came out of this HIV negative,” he added. “I was the luckiest man in the world.”