Top Five Teen-Idol Rehab Alumni
Checking into rehab is no laughing matter. That said, we at Rocks Off often find inspiration in even the darkest of corners.
So when it was announced, much to our surprise, that Dallas-born teen pop starlet Demi Lovato had checked into
rehab an inpatient treatment center, we pondered celebrities past who have struggled on the seemingly tumultuous road that is teen stardom.
5. Amy Winehouse: It's hard to remember this songstress wasn't always a train wreck. But Winehouse, who is now often (and aptly) referred to as "Wino," showed much promise in the early days of her career. After attending various London theatre schools for vocal training, the then 19-year-old released her platinum-selling debut album, 2003's Frank.
Though she achieved career success overnight, she encountered struggles along the way; in 2006, the once-zaftig singer gradually became emaciated due to her incessant substance abuse, becoming a regular in rehab throughout the latter half of the decade. Suddenly, her single "Rehab" seemed less comical and more autobiographical.
4. Lindsay Lohan: Considering Lohan broke into the business at the tender age of three, landing gigs as a child model and appearing in over 100 commercials, it's not surprising she has since struggled to independently find her own place in the world. After starring in a string of Disney flicks (The Parent Trap, Life-Size, Freaky Friday), the actress tried her hand in the music industry, releasing debut album Speak at the age of 18 in 2003.
Just three years later, Lohan's fast track to stardom hit a wall: More specifically, the wall of Wonderland Rehabilitation Center, where she completed her first 30-day stint for drug and alcohol addiction. After countless subsequent legal mishaps - including DUIs, misdemeanor counts for possession of cocaine, court appearances, SCRAM bracelets, nail-polish scribbles, and imprisonment - the wannabe pop singer makes us struggle to remember the innocent redhead we cooed over in her Disney Days. Or is it Disney Daze?
3. Leif Garrett: The '70s teen sensation signed a recording contract with Atlantic Records at the mere age of 15, releasing a stream of radio hits, including his cover of "Runaround Sue," and later, "I Was Made for Dancin'." But it was Garrett's endless misfortune with drug addiction that kept him a household name years later.
In 1979, at the peak of his pop stardom, Garrett crashed his car while under the influence of Quaaludes, leaving his best friend a paraplegic. Unfortunately, Garrett doesn't seem to be learning life's crucial lessons as he ages; just earlier this year, the now 48-year-old former teen star was arrested for possession of narcotics - black tar heroin, to be exact. Three decades after achieving such success as a teen sensation, Garrett found himself once again entering a court-ordered rehabilitation program.
2. Danny Bonaduce: Perhaps drawing inspiration from his Partridge Family TV character, Danny Bonaduce released his self-titled debut in 1972. Perhaps the only memorable track on the flop was the ironic "I'll Be Your Magician," in which the 13-year-old child star muses about seducing a grown woman.
But such irreverence would ultimately prove to be the least of Bonaduce's offenses; in his late teens, the former idol found himself homeless and drug-addicted. Eventually, said addiction would be responsible for the demise of his job (he was fired by WEGX-FM for drug use), and his second marriage. The lesson? We can't all be David Cassidy.
1. Britney Spears: In 1992, the 11-year-old aspiring singer was cast in Disney's revival of The Mickey Mouse Club. Just seven years later, her debut album ...Baby One More Time was released, hitting No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard chart, and eventually becoming the best-selling album ever by a teen artist. Spears maintained her wildly successful career into the new millennium, revealing a more mature, risqué version of herself on follow-ups Oops! I Did It Again and Britney.
Then after marrying (and, shortly thereafter, divorcing) dancer Kevin Federline in 2004, Spears began to display mysteriously erratic behavior. In 2006, she was photographed toting one-year-old son Sean on her lap instead of in a proper car seat, as she flippantly and one-handedly operated her vehicle. And who could forget her inexplicable 2007 head-shaving incident? Such curious behavior was capped off by a 30-day stint at Promises Rehabilitation Center.
Spears' transformation from child star to bubblegum pop princess to struggling adult has proven one of the most entertaining journeys we've witnessed. But perhaps most entertaining is the fact that despite her downfalls, Spears' career is endlessly tempered by the ultimate "carry-on" factor, proving no amount of flameout can disrupt her staying power.
Hats off to Lovato and the many other celebrities and musicians in her company who have actively taken steps to seek treatment and prevent the potential perils of the music business - not to mention those of general youth - from taking an ongoing toll on their mental, physical, and professional health.
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