When it comes to the world of comics, plenty have been known to have had at one time or another this problem called substance abuse. Saturday Night Live Alum Darrell Hammond expresses in his soon-to-be-out memoir some pretty heavy memories that may be darker than any of us suspected. Just like other former SNL cast members such as Chris Farley and John Belushi, Hammond had fallen victim to the habits of drugs in the mid to late 90′s and on into the 2000′s.
Hammond’s book, God, If You’re Not Up There, I’m Fucked: Misadventures In Stand-Up, Saturday Night Live, and Other Mind-Altering Mayhem was dispersed to Saturday Night Live offices late in the week and The New York Post excerpted a couple lines.
Probably most famous on SNL for his impesonations as Sean Connery on Jeopardy, former president Bill Clinton, and Donald Trump, he really seemed to have it made as an actor. Who would’ve realized that there were so many demons he was trying to defeat.
In 1998, Hammond had hit an all new low for himself and ended up in an NBC infirmary where he was then put in a straitjacket and sent to New York Hospital. In his story he writes, “My wife came but I didn’t recognize her…I kept a pint of Remy [cognac] in my desk at work. The drinking calmed my nerves and quieted the disturbing images that sprang into my head … when drinking didn’t work, I cut myself.”
And it doesn’t stop there. Hammond goes on to elaborate on his cocaine addiction in 2002 where he admits, “I’d started adding an obscene amount of cocaine to my binges … I had to be creative about how I did it without other people catching on or letting it interfere with the work. At least too much.”
He had spent some time in rehab but unfortunately relapsed in 2009 and began using crack. He literally stated,”I had the brilliant idea I should try crack,” which soon led him to hanging out in crack dens in Harlem.
Now the 56-year-old comic has sought out treatment and is sober and clean. His book doesn’t just sound like a memoir, but a deep encounter of overcoming one’s demons. He illustrates a traumatizing event during his childhood that consequently led to an addictive personality. I of course don’t know what that is because the book doesn’t come out until November 8. I suppose we’ll just have to wait until next month to find out this interesting psycho-analysis of Hammond.
Check out Hammond imitating former President Bill Clinton (right in front of him), courtesy of YouTube: