Lil Xan On Mac Miller's Death, His Own Sobriety: "I'm Not Completely Clean Yet"

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Lil Xan On Mac Miller's Death, His Own Sobriety: "I'm Not Completely Clean Yet"

By Paul Gaita 11/15/18

"You relapse. You don't want to. You get clean again. And you relapse. It's a process. You need treatment, and sometimes, that doesn't even help."

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Lil Xan discusses his fight for sobriety and how Mac Miller's death has affected him.

Hip-hop artist Lil Xan spoke candidly about the overdose death of his idol, rapper Mac Miller, and his own struggles with substance use, including a recent relapse.

In a conversation with TMZ on Nov. 5, Lil Xan (born Diego Leanos) said that while he wasn't surprised that fentanyl played a role in his fellow artist's demise, he remains devastated by the news.

"It's always fentanyl," Leanos told TMZ in regard to Miller's death on Sept. 7, 2018. He said that the synthetic opioid was among the primary reasons that he stopped dealing pills prior to his music career.

"I was selling Xanax before I was a rapper, you know, when it was real," he said. "And the minute it got to fentanyl, I was like, 'I'm not going to sell this.' My friends were taking it, they were puking. I was like, 'I can't… I'm out of the game.'"

In regard to Miller's death, Leanos told TMZ, "There's been so many people [who died from fentanyl overdose], but in particular, Mac hurt the most, because it definitely changed my everything."

Leanos had been left so devastated by Miller's death that in September, he considered retiring from music after fulfilling his recording contract. "When your hero dies, f—k that s—t," he declared during a podcast interview. "I don't want to make music no more." 

Most recently, Leanos has been recording a tribute album to Miller called Be Safe, which is reportedly due in December. He canceled a quintet of live appearances to focus his energy on completing the project, but added that he was also working on his sobriety.

"I'm not completely clean yet," he told TMZ. "I'm off Xanax, but narcos I'm still trying to wean off. " 

Leanos said that following his recent relapse, he sequestered himself in a forest and "detached from the world" to regain his sobriety. In regard to the relapse, he said, "Any addict would understand that s—t happens. You relapse. You don't want to. You get clean again. And you relapse. It's a process. You need treatment, and sometimes, that doesn't even help."

Change, said Leanos, can only come when the individual wants it. "It has to come from within," he said. "I've gone through periods of like, six months. And now it's because of me. It's because I want to be clean."

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Paul Gaita lives in Los Angeles. He has contributed to the Los Angeles Times, Variety, LA Weekly, Amazon.com and The Los Angeles Beat, among many other publications and websites. 

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