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Paul Williams Is Big In Recovery

by James Heller 28. September 2009 08:29
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles is participating in Recovery Month 2009, in part, with articles about recovery during the month of September.  Most individuals suffering from alcoholism and drug addiction begin their recovery with alcohol and drug treatment.  So it is our pleasure to help bring awareness to the general public about the benefits of recovery to individuals, their families, and everyone with whom they interact.

Stories about the negative behaviors of famous people have been increasing in recent years.  The reason may not be that more of the famous are getting into trouble, but that there are more media outlets that gain from the promotion of negative stories.  In either case, this is a good time to give credit to three people of fame who exhibit positive behavior to help others in need; John Whitaker, Paul Williams, and Rip Taylor.

Paul Williams’ contributions to music and film are big.  His musical accomplishments, as noted on his website, have made him an Oscar, Grammy and Golden Globe winning Hall of Fame songwriter.  “We’ve Only Just Begun,” “Rainy Days and Mondays,” “You and Me Against the World,” “An Old Fashioned Love Song” “I Won’t Last a Day Without You” and “Let Me Be The One” are among his timeless standards.  

Who can forget his performance as Little Enos in the Smokey and the Bandit trilogy? His incredible sense of humor also made him a big hit on the talk show circuit.  The list of Paul’s work is so long that we can’t fit it here, so visit his website for more information at http://www.paulwilliamsconnection.org.

But Paul’s fame could not protect him from alcohol dependence.  He explains the severity of his experience on his website, saying, "You know you’re an alcoholic when you misplace a decade."  As the disease of addiction goes, Paul says “There was something inside my chest saying ‘It isn’t enough’” and “Alcohol made me feel big enough to deal with the rest of the world”.

Bigger than his feat in show business (a statement he would answer with a height joke), and more important than his lost years, Paul has made life in recovery a labor of love helping others who suffer.  He is a graduate of the UCLA Addiction Studies program, and soon after began what he jests as the “Pauli Lama” period of his life.  Soon after, he settled into a balanced life of recovery and service.

He was very active in the early days of the Musicians Assistance Program, now covered by MusiCares.  Quoting Buddy Arnold, Paul says that “Musicians are traditionally over-medicated and under-insured”.  He saw a chance to help his peers in the music business, and has now expanded that to all in recovery.

Paul now lives his life following the principles of a system of recovery, “…through this amazing connection of one alcoholic talking to another”.  He speaks to groups in recovery, and recently was the main speaker at the San Fernando Valley Rally for Recovery in support of National Recovery Month 2009.  Publicly, he is always willing to discuss the positive role recovery has played in his life.

Sober almost 20 years, Paul is still making hits and was recently honored by his peers in the industry with an Emmy nomination for his song "I Wish I Could Be Santa Claus" from a Muppets Christmas:  Letters to Santa! But today, with his continued success in show business, he is an example of positive behavior that all should be aware of.  We wish Paul continued success and continued recovery.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment, as well as an alumni association to help ensure long-term recovery.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcoholism or drug addiction, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.