3 Doors Down Co-Founder Matt Roberts Dead of Apparent Overdose

By Keri Blakinger 08/22/16

According to his father, the late musician had struggled with prescription drug addiction and anxiety.

Image: 
3 Doors Down Co-Founder Matt Roberts Dead of Apparent Overdose
Photo: YouTube

Matt Roberts, the former lead guitarist for 2000s rock band 3 Doors Down, was found dead Saturday in a Hampton Inn in West Bend, Wisconsin. He was 38.

Officials have not commented on the possible cause of death, but the "Kryptonite" guitarist's father, Darrell Roberts, told reporters he thought a drug overdose was possible. 

"I was wakened at 8:50 this morning by some detectives beating on my door. It's always scary as a parent, they were in suits and that's when they told me. They asked me if Matt Roberts was your son, I said yes, and they said 'we have bad news to tell you, Matt deceased last night,'" he told CNN.

Initially, police responded to a call about a man “either asleep or passed out in the hallway of his hotel,” police said in a statement. Roberts was later declared dead. Darrell Roberts said his son had ongoing anxiety and addiction issues. "I know he had prescription drug addiction. He suffered greatly from anxiety. It's crazy as a performer; he never liked crowds or liked places he didn't know about as a baby, as a child, and this was his way of dealing with it and me and him talked about it often," said the grieving father. “I thought he had beaten it all.”

The star guitarist co-founded the rock group in Escatawpa, Mississippi back in the mid-1990s with bandmates Brad Arnold and Todd Harrell. The alternative band became a household name in 2000 with their first studio album, The Better Life, which went six times platinum. The rockers followed up their initial success with another multiplatinum album in 2002, Away from the Sun. Just before fellow bass guitarist Harrell was booted from the band following a 2013 vehicular homicide charge, Roberts also left to focus on his health. 

“3 Doors Down will always have a special place in my heart and it saddens me to take this time off,” he told fans in 2012. “But my health has to be my first priority.” The band’s website reported that Roberts' departure was due to “circulation problems” exacerbated by touring. It made no mention of any struggles with anxiety or addiction. 

Please read our comment policy. - The Fix
Disqus comments
Keri.jpg

Keri Blakinger is a former drug user and current reporter living in Texas. She covers breaking news for the Houston Chronicle and previously worked for the New York Daily News and the Ithaca Times. She has written about drugs and criminal justice for the Washington Post, Salon, Quartz and more. She loves dogs and is not impressed by rodeo food. Find Keri on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Disqus comments