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Russell Brand on addiction, fatherhood, & Trump

Larry King NowJul 24 '17

At once brilliant and wild, Russell Brand regales Larry with stories of fatherhood, opens up about battling addiction, and offers his incisive take on politics in this fascinating interview.

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Larry sits down with the brilliant and wild Russell Brand in London to discuss the spontaneous comedian’s wild past and promising future. Brand, who is currently amidst his tour ‘Rebirth’ in England and Ireland, also has a new book due in September called ‘Twelve’. Russell shares that his new book uses the 12 steps commonly used to cure addiction to drugs and alcohol, in a way that is applicable to all areas of life. Russell, who says he stopped taking drugs through an abstinence based recovery program, recalls having problems in other areas of his life such as his sex life, appetite, and seeking approval from others.While Russell states that he is not a Creationist or particularly Christian himself, he does believe in “a powerful conscious force”. Russell seeks to find out the mystery behind consciousness, and wants to discover what is under the human need for material objects. When Larry asks Russell what led him to write this book, Russell replies that it was his realization of a need and a hunger that couldn’t be fulfilled without a spiritual component. This leads Larry to delve deeper into Russell’s psyche, asking what led to Brand’s recovery. Russell responds honestly, describing his path to rock bottom through the use of crack and heroin while recalling the steps it took to free himself from addiction. Brand wholeheartedly admits that it was through other people helping him. Despite his early blossoming success in the media, he says he hung out and used with homeless drug addicts often.

When Larry asks why Brand’s drug use began, Russell describes his adolescence as lonely and lost. Despite his recovery, Russell longingly explains to Larry that he still feels as if there is something missing, a mystery that is difficult to contact while being caged and grounded by materialism. He still feels that addiction is wrongly diagnosed as the symptom rather than the tendency to do something. For Brand, his current happiness now stems from connection and living in the moment. All dark things aside, Russell cheerfully speaks about his newborn daughter, and how fatherhood has changed him for the better. Russell claims he once had a personal devotion to self centeredness, but realized his purpose and meaning upon his daughter’s arrival. Russell agrees with Larry that fatherhood has also changed his comedic style. Larry and Russell move the conversation towards politics. While Russell does not agree with Trump’s policies, he finds the U.S. President to be one of the most authentic political personalities. However, Russell is firm on the point of diminishing the divide between the elite and the ordinary. Larry reads a review of Brand’s comedy, and Russell agrees that he has made a change for the better due to his more content point of view and healthy mindset changes. Larry plays a quick game of ‘If You Only Knew’, and ends the discussion with a round of Twitter questions by fans.