Nearly a decade ago drummer Jeremy Spencer founded Five Finger Death Punch with guitarist Zoltan Bathory. What began as a budding hard rock hope turned into a massively successful heavy metal dream machine that today commands arena stages. In the midst of creating the Five Finger juggernaut, Spencer fell prey to the rock and roll lifestyle, with alcohol and drugs seemingly taking over his life. With a near death experience as a wake up punch, Spencer decided to tell his tale in the hopes that it may help someone else save their own life. This week, Spencer and publisher Harper Collins have jointly announced a September 2 release date for his autobiography Death Punch'd, Surviving Five Finger Death Punch's Metal Mayhem.
Spencer's personal journey through the wild highs and terrifying lows of the rock and roll lifestyle is told with candor, redemption and enlightenment. The first-time author offers a wry and rollicking tale of music, addiction and recovery, revealing the path that served as a catalyst to make him the man he is today.
The day I left treatment for alcohol and drug addiction, I decided to write my story. I was feeling raw and exposed and hoped just 'getting it all out' would be therapeutic. And, it was. Sitting on a tour bus with little to do, I found myself writing two or three thousand words a day. It didn’t occur to me until I’d written fifty or sixty thousand that my story might be helpful to others who need encouragement in pursuing their dreams and for those struggling with addiction. I sent that first draft to my dad who said, 'No parent wants to read about his son’s sex, drugs and Rock ‘n Roll exploits,' but he said there might be some benefit in sharing it with others, so he agreed to help me with revisions. What had begun as a way to help process my own 'stuff,' has resulted in the publication of Death Punch’d—Surviving Five Finger Death Punch’s Metal Mayhem. At first, I was apprehensive about the reaction I’d get from having the 'arrogance' to think anyone would want to read about my life. However, that initial apprehension has been replaced by knowing that if my story can help even one person, whatever criticism I might receive will pale in comparison. I’m not proud of many of the episodes in the book, but the person I was, under the influence, is not who I choose to be. A heartbeat away from death, I chose life. So, more than anything, I think Death Punch’d is a reflection of how far one can fall and still find a way back, a way to accomplish goals and dreams and more important...a way to live. I’d be the last person to say it’s easy. But, I’d be the first person to say there’s always hope.
Spencer has committed a percentage of his personal income from the book to support NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, which represents the professional interests of more than 75,000 addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused health care professionals in the United States, Canada and abroad. NAADAC’s members are addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused health care professionals, who specialize in addiction prevention, treatment, recovery support and education. An important part of the healthcare continuum, NAADAC members and its 45 state affiliates work to create healthier individuals, families and communities through prevention, intervention, quality treatment and recovery support.
Rock legend Alice Cooper shares:
Every rock star struggling with addition comes to the crossroads. Where he decides whether to live or die. It all comes down to that one decision. You're either going to stop everything and change your lifestyle and go on to make more music, or you die, it's that simple. Jeremy’s book is one of the best rock n roll, addiction and redemption stories since Nikki Sixx’s The Heroin Diaries. Jeremy, you're still here, welcome to the club!
Judas Priest's Rob Halford offers:
Jeremy is in a position to tell a unique story: FFDP are a band young enough that they had to navigate the new music industry, yet they did so with an approach and work ethic that was purely old school. That story alone would make for a good read, and Jeremy covers it. But thankfully he goes further-- he details how metal musicians are forged, and how metal bands either bond or break, and he tells us this in a matter- of- fact, unfiltered voice that is as raw and unashamed as his band's music.
Hailed by the New York Times as one of the most consistently popular bands on the rock charts, Five Finger Death Punch has become a heavyweight champ in music. But the band’s cofounder and drummer, Jeremy Spencer, did not have an easy ride to the top. Now, in Death Punch’d—Surviving Five Finger Death Punch’s Metal Mayhem (It Books; September 2, 2014; Hardcover; $26.99), Spencer opens up about how a mischievous boy rose from small-town Indiana to one of the decade’s top-selling bands globally—and how he nearly destroyed it all for a good time.
A detailed, in-depth account of the group’s origins and influences, as well as the infighting and tensions that, when channeled properly, result in the music fans love, Death Punch'd takes us onstage and behind the scenes, on tour and into the studio to tell the band’s story and his own story of remarkable perseverance and recovery. Told in Spencer’s unique, self-deprecating voice, filled with his twisted and humorous take on living the sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll dream-turned-nightmare, Death Punch'd is a lively, no-holds-barred ride and an inspiring cautionary tale that offers lessons for us all. Brimming with Spencer’s unique personality and ability to find humor in even the darkest situations, Death Punch'd is captivating throughout.
For more about the book, visit deathpunchd.com.