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Should record companies start mandatory drug testing? Could Winehouse & Houston still be alive

There have been so many artists in the music industry plagued by problems with drugs and alcohol over the years.

Janis Joplin, Elvis Presley, Kurt Cobain, Amy Winehouse, Michael Jackson – the list goes on and on … and now, everyone’s talking about the death of Whitney Houston. Although the official toxicology reports have yet to be released, it’s no secret that the pop icon had a tough battle with her addictions as well.

Some are asking, can the recording industry do anything differently to prevent even more of these tragic deaths?

On Dr. Drew Monday night, R&B singer Nicci Gilbert, who was with Houston two nights before her death, came up with a possible solution.

“Everyone is in a frenzy to find out what these artists are taking after they die,” she said. “Why aren’t record companies doing the same thing that the NFL or the NBA [are doing] – mandatory drug testing. They have 360 contracts where they take everything else. Why can’t they say in that agreement: ‘You’re going to be tested randomly.’”

Gilbert added, “If you have an issue, why aren’t there doctors that record companies work with on a regular basis that they know. If you get sick, ‘you go to this guy, because he’s not just going to give you anything you want.’ And when you start taking anything you want as an artist or as a performer, then you should be held accountable for that then – not after you die.”

Dr. Drew responded, “I love that.”

Read on to hear from a rocker:,By Gary Stromberg, Special to CNN

  • Gary Stromberg says he easily could have died from addiction to narcotics, alcohol
  • He ran a famous rock star PR firm, with a large bowl of cocaine as centerpiece
  • Stromberg lost his house, business, wife, money, and blamed everyone but himself
  • He admitted the problem was inside himself and began his journey to recovery

My life with drugs, rock ‘n’ roll and addiction

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