Tom Araya, the vocalist and bassist of Slayer, admitted that he regrets ever using the drugs and said that it was really a stupid thing to do during an interview he gave to Metal Hammer.
Araya revealed the mistake he and his guitarist bandmate, Jeff Hanneman, did back then in the early days of Slayer. He talked about their bad habits and said that they were both rather fond of cocaine. Tom Araya confessed that it was the best decision to quit the drugs.
Both Araya and Hanneman realized in these years that they could not go any longer by using that stuff. When asked about the picture of the band with a line of white powder in the inner sleeve of the ‘Hell Awaits‘ album, Araya said that it was actually salt and they did this kind of thing for the joke.
Here is what Araya said about the times he and Hanneman decided to quit drugs:
“Yeah, we used to do that stuff all the time. We stopped it when we were doing ‘South of Heaven’ , or in that timeframe anyway. It was pretty stupid… it was real stupid.
We just looked at each other one day and we were like, [exhausted voice] ‘We can’t be doing that shit anymore!‘, so I and him made a pact that we’d quit.”
He continued and explained the white powder issue, which was salt:
“That’s salt! A big line of salt. That picture was taken in Canada. A lot of stuff we did for a joke. Especially stuff like that, where people would see the picture and go, ‘Oh my God! Oh no! That’s real!’ [Laughs]”
Tom Araya also talked about the first time they played in Europe and tried to use drugs before the show. He said:
“I remember the first time we played in Europe. Our last show on that first tour was supposed to be held at a place near Rotterdam, somewhere in Holland. That show had got moved three times though, so we figured that no one was going to show up.
When we drove up to the place, the venue we were playing at was just a little hall – it was some kind of community hall for I don’t know what. I remember looking at that place and thinking, ‘You know what? Nobody’s gonna find this place.’ So we got ripped!”
“We got so fuckin’ wasted thinking, ‘Hey, they won’t show, let’s get fucked up. After all, it took us forever to get here, no one else is gonna come…’ But in the end, the place was packed. Packed! We were so fucked up that day…
Somehow the gig actually turned out OK, but we looked at each other right after the show and said, ‘We’re never gonna do that again. No more fuckin’ off, or getting fucked up, before a performance.’
Afterwards we were like, ‘That was so stupid – what were we doing?’ I suppose we were smart enough to think about what we’d done, at least, and change our ways.”
You can check out the source for the rest of the interview.