As one of country music's biggest superstars, it's no surprise Tim McGraw once enjoyed a hard-partying lifestyle. But the 47-year-old admits his behavior continued way longer than it should have.
"When your wife tells you it's gone too far, that's a big wake-up call," Tim, who's married to fellow country cutie Faith Hill recalls. "That, and realizing you're gonna lose everything you have. Not monetarily, not career-wise, but family-wise."
And it wasn't just Faith who took issue with his drinking habits. "It got to the point where my kids [Gracie, 17, Maggie, 15, and Audrey, 12] were getting older, and it was way past the point that they noticed it. And I noticed that they noticed. That's enough to straighten you out," he shares.
Now looking back on his past, the Grammy winner is well-aware of the mistakes he's made.
"I drank too much. I partied too much. And did other things too much. Chemically," Tim says. "No needles or that kind of stuff, but…use your imagination."
He adds, "It becomes a habit. Up until seven years ago, there were not a lot of shows that I didn't have something in my system."
The musician soon feared he was headed down the same path as late country singer, and personal hero, Keith Whitley, who died of alcohol poisoning in 1989.
"Keith Whitley taught me how demons can overtake you if you let 'em...You feel like you're supposed to be 'on' all the time. Then you drink and get onstage, and all of a sudden you feel confident and powerful," Tim explains.
Having since taken control of his life, the Louisiana-native is focused on his busy summer ahead, which includes a tour followed by the release of his new album "Sundown Heaven Town" on Sept. 16.
And Tim admits, while looking at old concert photos, that his style has greatly improved since he first began touring! "Man, my gut!" he jokes to Men's Health magazine. "I was up there in a see-through shirt – I thought I was lookin' good!"
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