The Strokes say Ryan Adams was ‘a bad influence’ on Albert Hammond Jr’s past heroin habit

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Ryan denies the claims, saying he 'loves Albert'

The Strokes have described Ryan Adams as a ‘bad influence’ on the past drug habit of guitarist Albert Hammond Jr.

The claims come in a new book by Lizzy Goodman called Meet Me in the Bathroom: Rebirth and Rock and Roll in New York City, 2001–2011, which details the rise of 2000s NYC indie bands such as The Strokes, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, LCD Soundsystem, Interpol and Vampire Weekend.

In a lengthy excerpt from the book, the band open up about their battles with addiction during the early ’00s.

“I remember Julian threatening to beat Ryan [Adams] up if he hung out with me, as a protective thing,” said Albert Hammond Jr. “He’d heard that Ryan would come and give me heroin, so he was just like, ‘if you come to my apartment again with heroin, I’m going to kick your ass’.”

Hammond continued: “I hadn’t really been doing it in baggie form until Ryan showed up. He was definitely a bad influence.”

Meanwhile, Strokes’ frontman Julian Casablancas added: “Did I specifically tell Ryan to stay away from Albert? I can’t remember the details, to be honest. I think heroin just kind of crosses a line. It can take a person’s soul away. So it’s like if someone is trying to give your friend a lobotomy — you’re gonna step in.”

Responding to their claims, Adams denied ever giving Hammond heroin and said: “That’s so sad, because Albert and I were friends. If anything, I really felt like I had an eye on him in a way that they never did. I was around and we actually spent time together. He would show me his songs. It was like, “No one ever listens to my music, but do you want to hear it?” I would be like, ‘fuck yeah!’ I loved him so deeply. I would never ever have given him a bag of heroin. I remember being incredibly worried about him, even after I continued to do speedballs.”

“I didn’t do drugs socially, and I don’t remember doing drugs with Albert ever. I wanted to smoke cigarettes and drink, like, dark red wine or vodka and write all night.”

Ryan Adams

Ryan Adams

He added: “It was very dramatic, the way it all went down. I was asked to meet one single person in a bar and I got there and it was the whole band and Ryan. I was more or less given a lecture, a hypocritical lecture, and then they told me that I was not going to be part of their scene any more.

“It was very weird. It was easy to brand me as the problem. I would suspect that they soon learned that I was not the problem.”

NME has approached Ryan Adams for a further comment.

Adams and Hammond have been sober for many years now.

Meanwhile, as well as headlining Green Man Festival alongside Future Islands and PJ Harvey, Ryan Adams’ upcoming UK tour dates are below. Tickets are on sale here.

Fri September 08 2017 – BELFAST Ulster Hall Belfast
Sat September 09 2017 – CORK Opera House
Mon September 11 2017 – DUBLIN Olympia
Tue September 12 2017 – DUBLIN Olympia
Thu September 14 2017 – MANCHESTER O2 Apollo
Fri September 15 2017 – EDINBURGH Usher Hall
Sun September 17 2017 – GATESHEAD Sage Gateshead
Mon September 18 2017 – LEEDS O2 Academy Leeds
Tue September 19 2017 – BOURNEMOUTH O2 Academy Bournemouth
Thu September 21 2017 – CAMBRIDGE Corn Exchange
Fri September 22 2017 – LONDON Royal Albert Hall