October 19, 2006

Keith Urban checks into the Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, California, to cope with a recurrence of substance abuse. In a statement, he says, "One can never let one's guard down on recovery, and I'm afraid I have."

This wasn't Urban's first trip to rehab however.

Before striking out as a solo act, Urban was part of a trio known as The Ranch. The band recorded the song “Some Days You Gotta Dance.” When the Dixie Chicks heard it, they recorded it as well, asking Urban to play on the tune. When it was time to go into the studio, Urban was busy elsewhere.

“I got on a bit of a three-day bender and couldn’t come to the session and had to call them and tell them I’m going to be a bit late,” Urban remembered. “Then I would call them and say, ‘I’m going to be a bit later.’ And then I would call them and be a bit later.”

“And I completely missed the session,” he continued. “I lived like a street away. It was ridiculous. I could have walked there with my guitar in hand, and I couldn’t make it. I remember just feeling so ashamed and disgusted at myself. I finally showed up the next day.”

Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

The second time around, Urban and Nicole Kidman were still newlyweds, married for about four months, when he checked into rehab for drug and alcohol addiction.

Urban, worried that the time away would wreak havoc on their new union. "I thought, 'Surely let's give it a few years so we've got some solidity, because this kind of thing could tear us apart,'" the singer said. "'This could just destroy us.'"

But it was Kidman herself, plus a few close pals, who staged an intervention for Urban, who was hooked on cocaine and other substances.

"It was really a profound moment in so many ways," the crooner said of the intervention. "The way in which Nic handled that moment was just perfect...Everything was just designed, I believe, for that moment to fuse us together. I had to make a decision which road I was going to take, once and for all," he said. "I'd been at that crossroads before and always taken the wrong road."

What was different this time?

"Love," Urban quickly responded.

Urban left for rehab the same night as that intervention, he said. "I didn't care about anything else."

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